1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Getting back to physics

  1. Nov 14, 2013 #1
    Physics research caught my interest right from some time in middle school/high school. I was a brilliant student and top of my class when I graduated M.Sc. in Physics from a top ranked university many years ago. (In India M.Sc. and Ph.D. are separate programs). I and my family were financially weak. After M.Sc. I made a halfhearted decision to go into a CSE program and take a job instead of going into a Physics PhD program. Not liked it much, kept slogging on. Now I decided that I will get back to physics, getting started on it with a self study.

    What text books would you suggest for a self-study course?
    Context: Should be good enough to get me started on the research part of Ph.D., more than sufficient to get past the MIT or CalTech qualifying exam. I did physics before and did well so I have some advantage, even though that was looooong years ago. Many of the courses/profs had no prescribed textbook, instead we went by lecture notes.
    What books have answers to problems so that I will be able to check my worked out solutions ? Independent solution manuals would also be helpful.
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 14, 2013 #2
    Keep in mind that you also have an option of going straight into a European-style PhD program, which in many cases does not require passing any qualifying exams. A number of research groups may even consider your programming experience to be a substantial advantage. The are quite a few universities in Europe, which would be on-par with MIT and CalTech, if you are interested in getting a PhD in Physics. If you decide to follow this route, then I'd suggest focusing on books that are closely related to the area in which you want to specialise.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook