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How to study Physics.

  1. Sep 10, 2008 #1
    I'd like to know how they teach Physics in reputed universities? For example, let's take Classical Mechanics. Is it taught in a single semester (talking about undergraduation)? How many lectures? Do they have humanities subjects (optional) in undergrad Physics? etc.etc.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 11, 2008 #2


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    It depends on the school you go to.

    At a liberal arts university, you will probably have to take a good deal of GE humanities/sociology/arts credits along with all of your physics courses.

    At a university which does not focus on liberal arts, the GE requirement may be less.

    For instance I am a physics major at a medium sized Jesuit liberal arts University.We make it into the Northeast Top 10 Undergraduate Universities list in US News and World Report every year. The university is not elite, but it is known. My university also focuses HEAVILY on liberal arts education. I had to take 9 credits of philosophy, 6 of history,6 of foreign language.humanities, 6 of sociology, etc. along with all of my physics math and engineering courses.

    So, yes, a school could require humanities and GE courses along with physics.

    For my classical mechanics class( by which I am assuming you are talking about a 300 level mechanics class, not an intro mechanics class), we met 3 days a week for an hour for one semester.

    My 200 level "Modern Physics" course was one semester for 3 hours a week lecture.

    My 400 level E&M courses covered two semesters with 3 one hour lectures a week.

    My Quantum course was one required semester (300 level) with a second semester (400 level) as an optional physics elective, which I am taking now.

    There are other physics courses that I had to take, but this should be enough to give you an idea of how my school runs it's physics courses. Whether my school falls under your definition of "reputable" i do not know, but it should give you some idea of university physics courses and what else may be required of you.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2008
  4. Sep 11, 2008 #3
    Do you have specific universities you are looking at? Best thing to do would be to visit the physics department section for each and find out.

    IF the university has an OCW (although not many do) you could look up the physics course and find out how long they spend on each subject.
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