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Choosing between Universities for Physics undergrad

  1. Apr 27, 2012 #1


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    I am a Canadian Grade 12 high school student (in the GTA) and I plan on pursuing a career in theoretical physics academia. I have been accepted to the University of Toronto and to UC Berkeley and am trying to decide between the two.

    From what I understand when applying to a graduate school for an MSc or PhD, not much attention is paid to the name of your undergraduate school although I have also heard the exact opposite. In that vein I have also been told that the curricula of undergraduate schools are too similar to warrant going to another university on the basis of "recognition". Berkeley is of course significantly more expensive than UofT but finances are not too much of a problem for me at the moment.

    I was hoping I could get some opinions from people who are already in university or the field so I can get a better understanding of the reality is really like. So is there an advantage to going to Berkeley rather than UofT keeping in mind that I wish to pursue a Doctorate and that finances are not too much of a concern for me?

    Thanks in advance
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 27, 2012 #2


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    Go to U of T. It's a great school, and while you might not care about how much it costs, chances are good your parents are the ones paying for it, and they are going to care.
  4. Apr 27, 2012 #3


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    Thank you for your response eri. Could you elaborate on your recommendation for U ofT ? I know its a great school but I would like to hear what you or other members have to say specifically regarding its (mathematics with) physics program, especially if you have had experience there.

    Also, when I said that finances are not too much of a problem, I meant that I have discussed the financial aspect with my parents and they have a plan to pay for either university. I just wanted to know if there are any academic benefits of going to Berkeley over U of T, not taking into consideration finances.

    Thanks again
  5. Apr 27, 2012 #4
    I think Berkeley is better than U of T in the field of physics, however you also need a comfortable place which you can found your best advisor and colleagues.
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