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Do I wanna do physics?

  1. Dec 1, 2007 #1
    Ive been thinking..lately I stopped working on my physics books and just been doing alot of math. For the past couple of weeks Ive been thinking and wondering whether I actually would like to do physics or not..I was thinking well to be a physicist you have to really love your job. So I was wondering do I really like it enough to study it for so many years in school? I like physics, Im interested, but Im more interested in math. Just pure mathematics thats what I really love to do. So, that brought into my mind theoretical physics..and I haven't the slightest clue what that is. Isn't theoretical physics all math or basically all math or something similar? Did anybody else feel this way about physics when they were planning on going into it as a major?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 2, 2007 #2


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    It is very much math, yes, but you still have physics. And there are many branches of theoretical physics. For example theoretical particle, nuclear, condensed, astrpnomy, string theory etc.

    But you still need ALOT of physics, and programming and scientific computing.

    What kind of math are you intresseted in? Have you looked what math reasearhcers do nowadays?
  4. Dec 2, 2007 #3
    Then do pure math with a physics minor. Near your graduation decide where to go from there. Nothing wrong with switching to pure math.

    You know, if you want to lose touch with all of reality, that is.
  5. Dec 2, 2007 #4
    What level are you taking in both? I was having the same debate at the end of my sophomore year, mostly because I had had 4 math classes (Calc I-III and ODE) vs 2 physics classes (Phys I and II). The next year I took some upper-div classes in both math and physics, and since they were both much more in depth, I could tell which one I preferred more easily.

    If you are still a freshmen/sophomore, you haven't gotten to the meat of either subject, and you should see what they're both like in upper-div. If you're already taking upper-div then you should probably listen to your instincts.
  6. Dec 2, 2007 #5
    Ahh stop worrying.

    Here's a basic little plan that may help you. In your first year, odds are, you'll take 1 physics class a few math classes and a lot of other random classes that hopefully you'll enjoy. During that time, see if you really like math or if you really like physics. If you cannot decide by your first year, then take more classes your 2nd year. If you still cannot decide, get a freakin double major!
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