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!

Courses Going to Physics from Computer Science

  1. Apr 2, 2016 #1
    My situation is this: I graduated with a B.S. in Computer Science in 2011 and have been working ever since. Now I'm thinking of returning to school for physics, with the ultimate goal of going to graduate school for physics. I think it's safe to assume I am not well prepared for graduate school, so I'm planning on taking under graduate courses. As part of my computer science degree I did take some physics classes, but it was so long ago I am effectively starting from scratch.

    I've noticed that physics programs tend to have a set of required classes that cover the introductory material, classical mechanics, electricity and magnetism, statistical mechanics, and quantum mechanics, in addition to some electives.

    My question is this, if I take the required undergraduate courses but forgo taking any electives, would that be enough to get into a graduate school (assuming I also have some research experience and recommendations) ? Would it be advisable to go into graduate school with this minimum knowledge?

    I realize this will be a long process no matter. I'm just trying to get a sense of how much time would be involved.

  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 2, 2016 #2
    Depends on the situation. But it's definitely possible to get in a grad school with this, but it might not be a top 10 school.

    No, definitely not. The more knowledge and experience, the better. Why? First of all, you must select a subject you like. If you only did the required courses, then you will not have a clear idea of what you like and what you're good at it. Second, of course, you'll need to be catching up a lot of stuff in grad school and won't be doing research for some time.
  4. Apr 2, 2016 #3


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

    Check your knowledge against what I recommend that you do in this thread:


  5. Apr 3, 2016 #4
    Thanks for the replies!

    I guess I'm not surprised to learn there are no short cuts. Though the time commitment doesn't discourage me, so I guess that's a good sign :smile:

    I think I will try out the Physics GRE. I was initially thinking I had forgotten everything, but now that I've been watching various videos on you tube I realize I remember more then I realized.

    Thanks again!
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?
Draft saved Draft deleted