Caltech transfer exam and chances of getting in....

In summary, the person is interested in studying physics at Caltech in California, but as an international student, they are unsure of their chances of being accepted. They have strong grades in physics and math, and have self-studied calculus and trigonometry. However, their school does not offer advanced courses or research opportunities in physics. They are also not strong in other subjects like Italian and history. They are considering applying for transfer to Caltech after completing a year of university in Europe, but are looking for advice and sample exams. They have a backup plan for studying in Europe, but are intrigued by the different education system and college life in the USA. However, they are aware of the high cost of studying in the USA and are
  • #1
physics user1
Hello everyone, my dream is studying physics in California at caltech but I want to know what a international student accepted to caltech looks like, that's my situation: i have perfect grades in physics and good grades in math, I studied calculus and trigonometry (trig at the second year of high school and calculus at the second and third year, during summer ) on my own (watching videos on youtube and reading on internet, sometimes I watch the mit lessons on you tube) before doing them at school (we have not done calculus yet since we are in 4, just some easy limits) did it because I liked it and I did want to have something more than my classmates, having a different prospective while studying physics, I was inspired by Einstein and Feynman.

We don't have ap courses, research or things like these in our high school so I'm studying physics also from university books (now I'm studiyng on the halliday), I have read part of the feynman lectures on physics, at school I am just doing a course were we have 4 hours of math and 3 of physics a week, we do 5 years instead of 4 and we are at school on Saturday. I passed the first part of physics olympiads (5 students of my school including me passed)

I am weak in others subjects like Italian and history or art because i don't like them could this be a problem? I know I have little chances of getting in just after high school so I'm going to have a year of university in Europe and try to transfer, someone can give me a transfer exam sample to caltech? I didn't found it on the Internet, can someone give me some problems that are similar to the ones of the exam? What can I do to increase my chances? also the transfer students have to take the sat tests? Is the TOEFL hard in your opinion? Thanks

Ps: i also done C++ programming at school, chemistry, biology, and this year geo science
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Physics news on Phys.org
  • #2
I don't know what your odds are, but my advice would be: don't stake your future on getting into Caltech, because it is hard, especially for an international student. For reference, there were 174 applicants for transfer last fall, and only 2 of them were accepted. If you feel you have a strong application, apply now instead of counting on being able to transfer.

I'm not saying don't apply. It's great to have a goal of getting into Caltech. I'm saying have a backup plan for if you don't get in.

I will throw in that Caltech is very expensive--according to their website, each year costs about $63,000.
 
  • Like
Likes physics user1
  • #3
axmls said:
I don't know what your odds are, but my advice would be: don't stake your future on getting into Caltech, because it is hard, especially for an international student. For reference, there were 174 applicants for transfer last fall, and only 2 of them were accepted. If you feel you have a strong application, apply now instead of counting on being able to transfer.

I'm not saying don't apply. It's great to have a goal of getting into Caltech. I'm saying have a backup plan for if you don't get in.

I will throw in that Caltech is very expensive--according to their website, each year costs about $63,000.

I have a plan B naturally, i will do university in Europe and possibly i'll try to transfer to another university in USA because I think studying in America is amazing, I just want to have a sample of a caltech test to know what am I going to deal with, and I want an opinion on my achievements, is there a chance for me? I didn't took the toefl and the sat yet but if my profile is OK for you I can take them, I've done some sat sample test in math and physics and they aren't difficult at all, I also do physics in English in my free time because I like it, if i exercise i can get high scores on them, I'm worried because my average that isn't high at all due to the others subjects, is just normal
 
  • #4
Cozma Alex said:
I have a plan B naturally, i will do university in Europe and possibly i'll try to transfer to another university in USA because I think studying in America is amazing,

I don't really get why. A lot of universities in Europe are on par with the universities in the USA. Furthermore, studying in the USA is extremely expensive. I don't understand why you would waste ten thousands of dollars when you could get a very similar education in Europe for only $1000.
 
  • #5
micromass said:
I don't really get why. A lot of universities in Europe are on par with the universities in the USA. Furthermore, studying in the USA is extremely expensive. I don't understand why you would waste ten thousands of dollars when you could get a very similar education in Europe for only $1000.

I would like to live in the USA and have an education there because universities in America have a different System of education, they are also more funny, i won't have a college life in Europe as i would have there, on top of all i would love to live in the USA (Hopefully California) someday and that is how i thought to start
 
  • #6
Cozma Alex said:
I would like to live in the USA and have an education there because universities in America have a different System of education, they are also more funny, i won't have a college life in Europe as i would have there, on top of all i would love to live in the USA (Hopefully California) someday and that is how i thought to start

If you think a more fun university education is worth tens of thousands dollars in debt, go ahead.
 
  • #7
Cozma Alex said:
I have a plan B naturally, i will do university in Europe and possibly i'll try to transfer to another university in USA because I think studying in America is amazing, I just want to have a sample of a caltech test to know what am I going to deal with, and I want an opinion on my achievements, is there a chance for me? I didn't took the toefl and the sat yet but if my profile is OK for you I can take them, I've done some sat sample test in math and physics and they aren't difficult at all, I also do physics in English in my free time because I like it, if i exercise i can get high scores on them, I'm worried because my average that isn't high at all due to the others subjects, is just normal
I have heard some not-so-great stories about being an international student in the US. I am not sure of how this is outside of the U.S.
 
  • #8
It's interesting you are focusing on Caltech if you want a fun undergrad experience. That is definitely not the reputation they have.

Are you going to apply to places like Cambridge? It's obviously as outstanding as any of the top schools in the US and I believe it costs the same for people anywhere in the EU.
 
  • #9
radium said:
It's interesting you are focusing on Caltech if you want a fun undergrad experience. That is definitely not the reputation they have.

Are you going to apply to places like Cambridge? It's obviously as outstanding as any of the top schools in the US and I believe it costs the same for people anywhere in the EU.

Well, I want I high education because I want to be a top physicist and for sure have a bright career, and caltech inspire me more than anything, the most important thing is education, but I really like America, all I want to have is an high education and if possible also having a college experience in the US, I'm saying US because I particularly love the idea of living in California it's also a matter of the place where to study (in know we have top schools also in Europe ), I want to study in America because I'm fascinated by this country, I like california, caltech is one of the best schools in the world and on top of all it's also in the place that fascinate me, Pasadena is near to los angeles, in my opinion a wonderful city. About the costs I thought at scholarships

I'm having fun studying physics and I'm competitive, it's just that America fascinate me
 
  • #10
Have you considered graduate school in the US? Many, many international students attend US Universities as graduate students and often the Universities provide some or complete funding, even for international students. You're not likely to get a scholarship as an international student in undergrad (a lot of universities here treat their undergraduate international students as cash cows).

I live in California and love it, and agree that Los Angeles is a wonderful city. But there are a lot of wonderful places to study physics here, just to start UCLA, USC (both in LA), UCSD, UC Irvine, UC Santa Cruz, UC Berkeley, UC Davis, Stanford, the list goes on and on.

And a comment to the folks saying the OP should stay in europe because the education is more or less equivalent and much cheaper: I completely agree, however if the OP's goal is to stay in the US for work after graduation, that will be much easier to do if the OP goes to graduate school in the US.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Likes physics user1
  • #11
analogdesign said:
Have you considered graduate school in the US? Many, many international students attend US Universities as graduate students and often the Universities provide some or complete funding, even for international students. You're not likely to get a scholarship as an international student in undergrad (a lot of universities here treat their undergraduate international students as cash cows).

I live in California and love it, and agree that Los Angeles is a wonderful city. But there are a lot of wonderful places to study physics here, just to start UCLA, USC (both in LA), UCSD, UC Irvine, UC Santa Cruz, UC Berkeley, UC Davis, Stanford, the list goes on and on.

And a comment to the folks saying the OP should stay in europe because the education is more or less equivalent and much cheaper: I completely agree, however if the OP's goal is to stay in the US for work after graduation, that will be much easier to do if the OP goes to graduate school in the US.

I think that going as a graduate is the best way, thanks :)
 
  • #12
Caltech will not provide you with a typical undergrad experience like Stanford and Berkeley would. It is a very serious place. You would get a great science education, however, I know several people who went to Caltech for undergrad and not one of them has described it as fun.
 

Related to Caltech transfer exam and chances of getting in....

What is the Caltech transfer exam?

The Caltech transfer exam is an exam that is required for students who wish to transfer into the California Institute of Technology. It is designed to assess the student's knowledge and academic skills in order to determine their readiness for the rigorous coursework at Caltech.

What does the Caltech transfer exam consist of?

The Caltech transfer exam consists of two parts: a math portion and a science portion. The math portion covers topics such as calculus, linear algebra, and differential equations. The science portion covers topics in physics, chemistry, and biology.

What are the chances of getting into Caltech after taking the transfer exam?

The chances of getting into Caltech after taking the transfer exam vary depending on the individual student's performance on the exam and other factors such as their academic record and extracurricular activities. It is important to note that the transfer exam is just one aspect of the application process and does not guarantee admission.

Can the Caltech transfer exam be retaken?

Yes, the Caltech transfer exam can be retaken if the student is not satisfied with their performance. However, there are limitations on how many times the exam can be retaken and it is recommended that students carefully prepare before attempting to retake the exam.

Are there any resources available to help prepare for the Caltech transfer exam?

Yes, there are resources available to help students prepare for the Caltech transfer exam. Caltech offers practice exams, study guides, and workshops to help students familiarize themselves with the content and format of the exam. Additionally, there are online resources and tutoring services available to help students prepare for the exam.

Similar threads

  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
6
Views
301
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
13
Views
2K
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
26
Views
1K
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
12
Views
828
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
17
Views
1K
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
11
Views
620
Replies
23
Views
1K
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
1
Views
2K
Replies
20
Views
613
Replies
4
Views
1K
Back
Top