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Admissions Do I have enough classes completed to go to grad school?

  1. Apr 10, 2016 #1
    So, I want to apply to a graduate program in physics in the fall. I have a decent 3.5 overall gap (3.8 upper level physics), but I feel like my course work is light. I'm graduating this semester and am contemplating coming back for a few more courses (maybe graduate) to strengthen my application although I would prefer to work in the Fall to pay off loans while studying a lot for GRE. Advice?
    My classes taken:
    General I; General II; Math through ODE and a class on proofs; Mechanics, EM (only one semester), Thermal Physics, Modern Physics, Quantum Mechanics, Electronics lab, Modern Physics Lab, Dynamics Lab.

    Was thinking about taking a math programming class in summer and maybe grad mechanics or math methods in fall. Unless that one semester of EM is really bad and I should take another at some school?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 14, 2016 #2


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    You need to check the level of your courses against those a physics major would have taken at the schools you are considering. A physics major typically studies each topic twice. In any case you need a full year of junior-level E&M class. I suggest you talk to the undergrad counselor at your physics dept. for advice.
  4. Apr 15, 2016 #3


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    I went from a PhD in Nuclear engineering to a physics post doc at MIT, so it can be done.

    Considerably more important than what courses you have taken (since these can be taken during a gap year, or Fall of your first year in grad school or even online) is the question of what research have you done? Do you have research interests? Have you ever worked in a lab? Or do you prefer theory? This is what the admissions committee is going to want to know.
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