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Master of Science help

  1. Aug 8, 2010 #1
    This thread is probably half career and half academic guidance I am seeking. So here is the trouble:
    I completed a Bachelor of Science in 2006 in maths in Australia at UNSW, and since then have been helping out with the family business, which is totally unrelated to math and do not wish to continue in the family business. My interest lies in mathematics and physics but I think it might be already too late to apply for some graduate positions unfortunately. So I was considering doing a Master of Science Preliminary at Monash University in Australia by distance education, since the closest uni is about 6 hour drive. The reason I was deciding to do the MSc Prelim at Monash Uni was because it combined coursework and a little bit of research in areas which sound of interest to me; astrophysics and computational maths to name a couple. They offer a Master of Science but it is 6 years part time and fully by research which doesn't sound too practical at the moment and very expensive, I'd prefer doing some coursework. They also offer some graduate certificate thing which is coursework but to me it sounds just like what I did in my undergraduate studies. Just wondering if anyone knew much about MSc prelim and would it be useful for putting on my resume and getting some maths related job since it doesn't come very cheap either at about $23000?
    Monash appears to be about the only Uni which offers distance education in maths.

    I emailed Monash asking if the MSc prelim (which I suspect it is) is just a build up for the Master of Science by research and got no response.

    Thanks for your time.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 8, 2010 #2
    if you're interested in getting the knowledge to prepare yourself not the degree, why don't you use MIT's and Stanford's open course wares and save those $23000 ? While MIT OCW has an excellent list of math courses, Standford's has a wonderful one of advanced theoretical physics topics, including Leonard Susskind's lectures on relativity, quantum entanglements, cosmology, statistical mechanics, and recent advancements in particle physics.
  4. Aug 8, 2010 #3
    I have completed a physics open yale course but that isn't official. Like I could just say I have watched every youtube clip on every subject in maths and physics but doesn't necessarily show how well I understood it and whether I actually did complete it or not. When I do an award course I will get a mark which will provide proof of my level of understanding.
  5. Aug 9, 2010 #4
    I'm not sure about the system in Australia, but I don't think that a master degree by distant learning would help you having a career in Math. Since you are passionate about math and physics, the optimum road is to go for grad school and then try to have a position in Academia. I know that you have ruled this option out, but I would give it a second thought if I were in your place.

    Putting myself in your shoes, I would give myself a year or so preparing myself using OCW's (since you graduated 4 years ago). After that I would apply for a master of science by research FULL TIME which I believe could be finished in less than 2 years. (there is also a chance that you get partial funding from the university when doing master by research, I did a similar one and I got a full tuition waver scholarship, though that was in Malaysia not Australia). After completing the master by research it would be easy to get a PhD scholarship and enjoy being in the math and physics business without costing yourself that much, specially if you managed to publish one or two journal papers during your masters. Anyway, those were my thoughts. I hope they could help.
  6. Aug 10, 2010 #5
    OK Thanks for the tips I will take what you said into consideration.

    Even though a job in academia would be nice, a math job of any sort would be nice. I was thinking that after 3 or 4 years potential employers will think I am no longer interested in maths and physics so by doing some award courses that will keep my knowledge up to date and show I am still interested in these areas.

    Anyway thanks for your help.
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