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Courses Course Selection for 2nd Year (Applied Maths, Physics, etc.)

  1. Oct 19, 2007 #1
    This is a very long story; please bare with me!

    I am a first year undergrad student nearing the end of the year. I am from South Africa (at the University of Cape Town). The way it is here, is that for your undergrad degree, it is standard to take two or one majors. In first year you take 4 full course, second year you take 3 full course, and third year one full course. Two half courses make one whole course. (I mention this because most people here are not South African, and the structure of the universities is probably different). I can give you more information on these details if you wish.

    I am certain my first major is going to be Mathematics, and would like to do post-grad in maths, although that might change. I am also quite certain my second major will be Applied Mathematics. I might instead have a second major in Physics, or, less likely, Statistics; my first year course selections in the first year allows this.

    Being likely that my secon major will be Applied Maths, I would rather have a physics emphasise on my applied maths, rather than a modelling/numerical methods/dynamical systems etc. emphasise, although I do very much enjoy those parts too.
    This will sound weird; I enjoy the applied maths physics, but I do not enjoy physics itself! Does that make sense?

    So in my second year I will take a full course in maths, and a full course in applied maths. I am undecided as to what should comprise my third course. I could take a full course in physics, but the first year course in physics has really put me off doing any more physics.
    Would it be a good idea to take second year physics to complement applied maths, knowing I will drop physics in third year?
    If I don't take second year physics, I will only have first year physics. Instead I could take a full course in statistics. Would statistics complement my maths or applied maths?
    I could also take any combination of two from {an extra half-course in maths; a half course in statistics; a half course in physics} to make up the third course (note, if I took the half course in maths, I would be doing 1.5 courses in maths).
    I have given serious thought to a half course in statistics, and one in physics, or stats and maths, or maths and physics.
    What combinations should I take?

    If I major in Applied Maths, I have the possibility in doing post-grad in Astrophysics and Space Science or Mathematical and Theoretical Physics. Neither of them require a major in physics, only a major in applied maths, and could possibly be something I would want to do. Like I said earlier, as of now, it is likely I will do post-grad in Pure Maths, but these are also options.
    In light of this, would it be a good idea to take second year physics? Even though I really am not enjoying it? But I enjoy the applied maths physics.

    I can give you more details on the courses I am taking (like content), and the ones I can take in 2nd and 3rd year.
    Thank-you very much.
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 19, 2007 #2
    Oh yes, just so you know, I have tried contacting curriculum advisers, but I have got no response, probably because I am a first year. I also o not feel my lecturers are approacheable- I am a very shy guy.
    Which reminds, part of the reason I don't like physics is because I truely am a very shy person, to the point that it is socially debilitating. And in physics you always have to work in groups, which I hate. But mostly I really did not enjoy the material in the first year physics course.
  4. Oct 19, 2007 #3
    Well heres a bummer. You will more than likely work in groups in a great many jobs, especially in science (which includes math). Get to work on getting over that shyness ;)
  5. Oct 20, 2007 #4
    :(. But I need advice on courses!

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