Master in engineering after BSc Physics?

  1. I was wondering if it is possible to study for a masters in an engineering field after completing a BSc in Physics? I'm trying to decide what to study in uni and I love physics, but the thought that it would be all theory and absolutely no hands worries me a little. I'd like to be able to apply the knowledge I gain and actually be part of designing and building things, but I'm not sure if a physics degree will allow me to persue the designing/building part.

    If this isn't possible then which branch of engineering would allow me to study and use the most physics? My main interests lay in astrophysics at the moment.

    I appreciate any advice :)
     
  2. jcsd
  3. stewartcs

    stewartcs 2,284
    Science Advisor

    It depends on the school and the program. Most programs should allow it, but you might have to take some bridge courses to close the gaps from your Physics degree to that of the Engineering degree. Check with some schools and see their requirements.

    CS
     
  4. mheslep

    mheslep 3,574
    Gold Member

    You might look for a program that has a short course bringing BS Physics grads up to speed on the fundamentals on the particular engineering discipline. The University of Virginia used to have one in its engineering school - ran during the summer before the first Fall graduate courses began. For instance if the MS is in EE, you have some basic circuit design, but you'll have to gain some more specific knowledge in the discipline - say familiarity with the basic transistor parameter model and digital integrated circuits.
     
  5. I got a Master's in nuclear engineering following a Bachelor's in physics. It isn't uncommon. Personally, I think physics is an excellent basis for almost any later studies, formal or self-guided, throughout the rest of your life.

    Depending on where you study/practice engineering, you may have to come to terms with unit systems long forgotten in physics (gallons, pounds, factors of 32.2, etc.) - trust me, this is not insurmountable. Another thing seen in engineering is reliance on 'correlations' - which are empirically derived relationships that allow you to estimate values of parameters (like heat transfer coefficients or friction factors) that would be difficult/impossible to obtain from the kind of 'first principles' calculations that physicists like to make.

    Just my two cents.
     
  6. Does anybody know if it's possible to from a bachelor's of math degree to a masters in mechanical engineering? If not, what kind of courses should i take to bridge the gap and enable me to get accepted into a masters of mechanical engineering degree?
     
  7. stewartcs

    stewartcs 2,284
    Science Advisor

    Depends on the program, but most all of them will require fundamental bridge courses for an MSME. So you'll need things like statics, strength of materials, dynamics, thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, etc...

    Check with the program director and they will advise you on what is required.

    CS
     
  8. Actually one of my cousins wants to do that =) i'll tell him to check. Thankz.
     
  9. it would be much harder with a bachelor degree in mah than in physics my advice is go for applied math
     
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