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Math Advice!

  1. Apr 1, 2009 #1
    Hi, I am new on this site and actually was a biochemistry major starting out, but have always had a thing for physics so I saw an adviser and will be adding it as a second major next semester. I have done plenty of searches on this site regarding suggested math classes and I just wanted to get a quick opinion from anyone able to comment.

    Considering my schedule is packed, it leaves little room for math which doesn't sit too well with me considering my plans for graduate school. I have decided to take the following as definite "needed" math classes from what I can gather reading past threads:

    1. Calc 1/2/3
    2. Applied Linear Algebra (using MATLAB, not sure if I should have gone with "pure" if anyone wants to comment)
    3. Modern Diff Eq (Using MATLAB again)
    4. A sort of "survey course" made for engineers and scientists which covers things like vector analysis, fourier analysis and partial diff eq. If anyone believes that any of these topics are important enough to be taken as stand alone classes please let me know.

    This is in addition to two classes in the physics curriculum which are called "mathematical methods in physics" which I am unsure will make any of the above classes superfluous. I rounded out this schedule with a class called "applied complex analysis" but I am getting a different opinion from a professor of mine who says "abstract algebra" may be a better way to go. Considering my tight schedule I really only have room for 2 additional math classes to the ones above, possibly just 1.

    For a person not so interested in the theoretical side of physics but more the applied side, such as chemical engineering, or possibly biophysics I was wondering if you could "rank" the below classes when considering my above math plans with regards to what you feel that you needed in the course of your physics career:

    1. Vector Calculus
    2. Complex Analysis
    3. Geometry (No experience with this since high school! But unsure if its needed)
    4. Advanced Calculus (Beyond Calc 3 and introduces "Real numbers, completeness, sequences/series, continuity, uniform theorems, derivative, Riemann integral, pointwise/uniform convergence, Taylor's theorem" as per course description)
    5. Numerical Analysis
    6. Abstract Algebra

    If anyone wants to add any additional comments on what I may be missing feel free! Thanks.

    TL;DR - Please choose 2 math classes from the above list that you believe are essential to graduate level applied physics.
  2. jcsd
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