Programs Experimental data in theoretical PhD?

  1. Hi all,
    I was wondering if PhD students in theoretical aspects of cosmology,gravitation, black holes... etc do any/much analysis of experimental data, and just mainly omit observational technique, or if their entire education is in learning physical theory and making predictions and solving problems using it.
    The reason I ask is that I'm applying for an undergraduate research bursary for a project that will involve analysing redshift data to make deductions about the large-scale structure of the universe, and I need to know if I'm getting valuable preparation for my intended PhD in a few years, or if I'm rounding out my skill base :biggrin:
    Many thanks in advance.
  2. jcsd
  3. mgb_phys

    mgb_phys 8,809
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Without the experimental data how do you create the theory?
    How much you actually analyse raw images/spectra etc compared to using published values or results of collaborators varies with the group.
    But without any experimental data it's not physics it's either maths or philosophy.

    ps. It's always useful to know about the raw data - so you know how far the experimentalists conclusions can be trusted.
  4. The degree of raw data analysis was the point I was looking to address, thanks.
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