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Hi,I am an EE student and I'm nearing the end of my first year from

  1. May 19, 2010 #1

    I am an EE student and I'm nearing the end of my first year from a 3 year course. I am quite sure that I want to continue studying after I obtain my degree, however I'm not sure what I want to study just yet. Is this normal for someone at my stage? Or should I already have a clear picture of what I want focus on after I graduate?

    As for my first year at university, it was pretty much full of introductory stuff, nothing specialised, so I guess I haven't got a good idea of what options there are for me as an EE student after I graduate - I'd love to know about some paths normally taken by EE students.

    Also, recently I have talked to a professor about pursuing further studies and I mentioned that I intend to go for a masters after I graduate. She said that usually when someone is studying for a masters degree and he's doing quite well, he normally gets offered to stay and obtain a phd. Is this something that happens very often?

    Thank you in advance for any replies that could shed some light on all these doubts I have :)
  2. jcsd
  3. May 20, 2010 #2
    Re: Uncertainties

    Yes, completely normal. Though I thought I knew what I was going to do in year 2 of my 5 year degree, I changed my mind completely in my final year. Thus, I always tell early undergraduates that I feel it's better if they don't make a mental commitment to any particular area of study so early on - if you did you'd potentially miss out on many other things you might enjoy.

    Are you in the UK? The answer to this question isn't straightforward. First off, there are almost always many times more Masters students than there are PhD students to be had - my department takes ~20 Msc students per year and maybe 3 PhD students. Some professors do prefer to take from the pool of Msc students if there are any willing, simply because they know the student and are familiar with how they work. This can be a big advantage since interviews do not always tell the full picture. Building up good relationships with staffers during an Msc year will be great for your chances, but it's also very important to keep your grades up.
  4. May 20, 2010 #3
    Re: Uncertainties

    fasterthanjoao, thank you for taking the time to reply.

    As for your question, no I'm not in the UK. However that's where I intend to pursue my studies once I obtain my degree. The professor who I mentioned read for her phd in the UK as well, so I guess what she told me applies mostly to UK universities.
  5. May 21, 2010 #4
    Re: Uncertainties

    Yes. I didn't find my major until my 3rd year. Yes, it took me another year to finished school, but I finished. Science/engineering majors will find out that they won't be able to completely decide their major until they past their first 2 years of gen ed courses. If you are truly a science oriented person, your natural curiosity will take over you to check out other science courses/majors. I went from Chemistry to Mathematics to a Physics major.

    All my relatives finished with a different major/area of study than what they originally planned.

    It didn't happened to me nor my fellow RAs I worked with when I was pursuing my Masters. We all just went for Masters thesis and ended there. It might be more common in higher tier schools in the U.S. but that's a complete guess
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