Introduction I'm currently a sophomore electrical engineer in college, and I'm trying to decide if I should stick with the major or switch to physics. More importantly, I'm concerned with what the decision would mean for my long term future. Executive Summary Right now, I'm not too far into the electrical engineering curriculum, but I do like the course work so far. What I'm not crazy is about is the general engineering courses my school requires. They make up about 1/3 to 1/2 of the required classes from here on out, and I really hate them. I'm completely uninterested in the projects so far. The projects have no electrical engineering components, and are generally so guided that the only freedom you get is how well you do the documentation and procedure. Now I understand that those are likely to be critical elements of being an engineer...but I hate the rigor. I hate having to detail every decision that was made and why, I hate that the classes are really nothing more than forced groupwork on projects that are not complex enough to require it and grade us more on if we put the staple in the correct location on the report than the actual technical merit of the work we did. Maybe it'll get better as classes go on, but I can't see myself enjoying the working environment if that's representative of how a real engineering job would be. Statement of Design Problem Now on the other hand, if I look at the Physics curriculum at my school, I'd say I'd enjoy nearly all the classes in it, instead of despising 1/3 to a 1/2 like engineering. Still, ultimately I can't imagine a job in some physics related career having any less red tape than engineering does. Not to mention it could potentially make job prospects much worse (or at least very few people have the title physicist). Theory There are a few more reasons I'm considering switching as well. Every semester so far, my school has administered a test to determine your suitability for engineering. It ranks your personality traits and interests in certain areas, and generally I score exactly opposite of how an engineer is supposendly supposed to score. While I do extremely well in classes, I do not like to break problems down into small steps before solving them, apparently I have what I believe they termed destructive thinking, where I can stare at a problem for a while and make no progress and then suddenly understand it completely and thoroughly as opposed to slowly building my knowledge bit by bit, and prefer to figure things out on my own rather than recieve directions. While those are probably fairly meaningless (at least matter equally for physics), I don't seem to fit in all that well with my fellow engineers and tend to have much more in common with the physics majors at my school. Perfectly fine working relationship, but the engineers are generally more interested in tuning up their cars or strengthening their skateboards than discussing quantum theory. Proposal As for what I'd like to do in the future, well I'd preferrably like to do research and probably pursue a doctorate. I know that doctorates aren't easily earned, so I'm not saying it's a definite. I can't see myself really working on an individual product design, but would prefer to work on the general architecture or concept behind something. I'm pretty sure I do want to work in the computer industry, which makes the idea of switching majors to physics seem fairly dubious to me. It doesn't seem related enough that I could get into the field without dual majoring. Conclusion Anyhow, I'm having trouble deciding. If it was just about enjoyment of classes, I'd switch to physics in a heart beat, but I'm not sure if I'd be happier in the long run. My ego won't let me switch without thinking that maybe I did it because the engineering was too hard, but honestly I feel like I'm wasting my time in many of the engineering classes, and would much rather be learning theory. In general, I much prefer the theoretical side of things and wouldn't mind being a theorist, if I could find a job doing it. Audience Participation So, can anyone offer some ideas of the types of jobs a physicist and an electrical engineer could have, and what choosing one path over the other would offer?