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Double Degree - Does it make sense?

  1. Oct 18, 2010 #1
    I'm doing a double/dual degree (Physics BS and History BA with an emphasis in the history of science and technology). Everyone is telling me that it's a waste of my time to get the history BA, but I've always loved history and I think it could come in useful at some point, although I do plan to do my graduate work in theoretical/quantum.

    I guess my question is: What are your opinions on this? Is the dual degree (different from a double major) worth my time if I plan on focusing on physics after undergrad?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 18, 2010 #2


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    If it interests you, then yes- it is worth your time.
  4. Oct 18, 2010 #3


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    I think that's an interesting combination, and it could very well come in handy. Who knows?

    At the very least, it will make you a solid writer - that's an asset to any employer.
  5. Oct 19, 2010 #4
    I think it sounds interesting, too. Like lisab says, the writing skills you'll get from extra reports/essays in history is always going to be a good thing. Good writing is one thing many post-grads struggle with, and for employment it's great to use the history part of your degree as evidence that you can do it.

    If you do go on to graduate work, the dual degree will also put you in a place where you can hopefully add some anecdotes to make lectures/tutorials a bit more interesting - you'll also be in a good place to carry out some outreach work (advertising physics with shows in schools and the like) which is good if that's something you'd like to do.

    Are you adding years on with this degree or? If you're having no problems with the workload then I don't really see it as a problem. Sure, in terms of pure physics abilities it isn't going to be as worth as maybe taking some extra math + physics classes - but your choice has it's assets too, and if it's what you're interested in then you just need to remember to keep on top of what you can advertise as your marketable skills.
  6. Oct 19, 2010 #5
    Are also adding math and physics courses to your course workload?
  7. Nov 14, 2010 #6
    I am actually undertaking a double degree myself as well. I know exactly how you feel, the indecisiveness of whether it is worth the time, money and effort, given that you might not use it in your field.

    I am an electrical engineering/philosophy student. Its a weird combination, but I think that the diversity and having the ability to think in completely different mindsets would be very helpful after we graduate!

    I also think that its never really a waste of time, if you are doing something that you enjoy. It doesn't matter if you are not going to use it later in your career :)
  8. Nov 14, 2010 #7

    And yes it is incredibly useful once you get of academia.
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