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How to choose math electives for a physic student

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Main Question or Discussion Point

Physic is my major and there are some electives of math units
now...I am in trouble with choosing one pair from these two options:
【MATLAB】+【Advanced ordinary differential equations】
or
【Algebra and number theory】+【Real analysis】

can anyone tell me which one is better for me if I plain to do theoretical physics or particle physics(theoretical) and why

I feel all math are important for theoretical physics but I have to choose one..

thank for help...


ps:
【MATLAB】
Synopsis
Topics covered include error analysis, the solution of algebraic equations; approximations of functions: curve fitting, least squares and interpolation; analysis of data by Fourier Transforms and FFTs; numerical differentiation and integration; ordinary differential equations.

【Advanced ordinary differential equations】
Synopsis
Boundary-value problems: Sturm-Liouville eigenvalues problems and orthogonal polynomials, shooting and direct matrix methods for the numerical investigation of boundary-value problems and iterative matrix methods.
Dynamical systems: analytical and numerical methods for planar autonomous systems, classification of critical points using eigenvalues and eigenvectors and perturbation methods for periodic and nearly periodic motion.


【Algebra and number theory】
Synopsis
Groups in geometry, linear algebra, and number theory; cyclic and abelian groups; permutation groups; subgroups, cosets and normal subgroups; homomorphisms, isomorphisms and the fundamental homomorphism theorem. The Euclidean algorithm, prime factorisation, congruences, the Euler totient function; the theorems of Fermat, Euler and Wilson, and the RSA public key cryptosystem; Chinese remainder theorem; rings, fields and abelian groups in number theory.

【Real analysis】
Synopsis
Real numbers, countable and uncountable sets, paradoxes of the infinite, the Cantor set; compactness and convergence; sequences and series; continuous and differentiable functions; fixed points and contractions; applications to Markov chains, branching processes and integral equations.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Simon Bridge
Science Advisor
Homework Helper
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It's basically applied vs pure math.
I ended up needing a lot of DEs and computer modelling ... but I'm an experimentalist.
I hear theorists do some of that other stuff.

Do what lights you up.
If they are about equal, then:

Which do you value more: grades or skills?
If grades - do the easier one, otherwise do the hard one.
 

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