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I'm about to go to college and, well I'm good friends with physics

  1. Feb 13, 2013 #1
    So here is my current state: I am int the 12th class (that is senior), in Romania.
    My connection with physics is good, certified by me participating at national physics contests, having some notable results(of course, this is not an absolute argument).So I thought about aiming for a career in physics(theoretical or applied).

    However, most of our physics colleges are not too serious(this also should be reevaluated). So the best alternative would be studying abroad.
    However, there is a second problem, as I do not have any language certificate(right, shame on me for not being foreseeing), and by this time, many application deadlines have been passed. So here is my first question: what are my current options for applying at a University without a language certificate, or assuming I could still get one(my English is ok).

    The second thing I have thought about was applying to a computer science college here(as, the way I found out, these are the most serious math-based colleges), then aim for a physics (graduate) degree.(I actually thought(based on some true facts), that I could also learn physics during my undergraduate studies(as a free learner))

    My question about this is: how realist do you think my approach is?
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 18, 2013 #2
    Interesting article here:


    The author also has a blog & is on twitter...

    I think trying for computer science undergrad, then physics postgrad isn't a good idea. In practice it may prove impossible. In twenty five years as student and staff in UK universities I never came across anyone who did this. The reverse situation was very common! There has been an over-production of physics students, but a great demand for computer science expertise, so it was very common for people (like me!) to convert from physics to CS, and (indeed) there were many universities offering MSc conversion courses to allow this to happen.

    In the UK we have had several media-savvy physicists (Stephen Hawking, Brian Cox...) who have sold physics as a "wonderful" subject. This has led to many wonder-struck students entering physics, meaning not many can get a postgrad position or career in physics. No reason not to do physics, if you love a subject I think you should do it. Just do it with both eyes open, and "wonder shades" on....

    Why not check out a few UK university web sites? Start here:


    A few universities, Cambridge especially, might be more flexible when it comes to "English certificates" if your academics are outstanding (notable results in national physics contests would certainly count with them... if they are *really* notable...) In the application letter/interview just make sure to filter out daft ideas like doing CS first! You have to show overwhelming, one tracked, interest in physics above all else. (But as you are thinking of CS, why not do that - more jobs & money there!)
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2013
  4. Feb 25, 2013 #3
    You can probably study in Germany if you can afford the rent, I don't think they have entry exams for Physics, but you should see if you can find an international program taught in English. The German university system used to be unfriendly to foreigners because very little guidance was given to all students, but that might be changing. I know people who have studied computer science in parallel, but they always said, that the computer science courses were a joke in comparison, and they spend all their weekends on Physics homework.
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