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Career problem - Please help me

  1. Nov 24, 2007 #1
    Dear friends,

    I have several problems regarding selection of major field and subfields. I greatly appreciate your help by answering the following questions. (I have done Physics, Chemistry and Com. Science and specialized subject is Physics. I did my final year research in material science - Advanced ceramics).

    1. What are the most popular/competitive fields and least popular fields ( for Astronomy/physics) in US universities for PhD (chances of getting selected)?

    2. Astronomy/astrophysics is my dream, but no astronomy/astrophysics courses was offered in my college undergraduate level (I was able to do only special relativity - 300 level and got A+). Will there be still a chance to get selected to do astronomy/astrophysics in USA?

    3. I got good grades (A's or A+'s) for nuclear and particle physics areas but lack of research knowledge (as I'm from a developing country) might be a problem. If I get selected to nuclear, particle or high energy physics , is there a chance to do astrophysics in PhD.?

    These are the universities that I'm going to apply. Would you mind, please provide the most popular/competitive fields for each university (this will be a great help).

    Georgia state university
    Iowa state university
    University of Kansas
    Kansas State University
    Univ Of Massachusetts At Amherst
    University of Mississippi
    Ohio State University
    University of Houston
    Wayne State University
    Colorado State University
    University of Missouri Columbia
    Vanderbilt University
    Brown University

    Thank you very much. I hope to hear from you soon.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2007
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 24, 2007 #2
    Please help me. I'm totally lost. Please........
  4. Nov 24, 2007 #3

    Chris Hillman

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    Let me see whether I understand the question. You have finished up an undergraduate degree in physics/engineering in some country other than the U.S., and now wish to apply to graduate programs in the U.S? Preferably astrophysics but you'll settle for physics?

    Others can address your questions better than I, but regarding this:

    You should study the websites of the Physics/Astronomy departments at those universities. Look for "research interests", pages describing affiliated institutions. If you spot something which looks interesting (e.g. a chance to leverage a materials science background in astrophysics research), try to obtain arXiv eprints/papers by the faculty members involved and read them carefully. If you still think you might be able to contribute, write a letter to the Admissions Committee making a specific inquiry whether they might be looking for a new graduate student next year.
  5. Nov 24, 2007 #4
    Thank you very much friend. Your help is highly appreciated
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2007
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