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Getting back to physics

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  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.
     
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