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Courses Most useful elective undergrad courses for a physics student wanting to diversify?

  1. Jun 24, 2012 #1
    i.e. anatomy 101, biochem 101
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 24, 2012 #2

    marcusl

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    Re: Most useful elective undergrad courses for a physics student wanting to diversify

    English literature and writing classes. Not only are they enjoyable, not only do they present new and different thoughts and experiences, but there is a professional payoff, too. The ability to clearly express yourself in articles, reports, proposals and even monthly status updates is nearly as important as the quality of physics you do.
     
  4. Jun 24, 2012 #3

    chiro

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    Re: Most useful elective undergrad courses for a physics student wanting to diversify

    I don't necessarily think that this will meet this goal in general for these kinds of classes.

    Expressing yourself to a literature teacher or lecturer is a lot different to talking to a bunch of unfamiliar faces when having to give a report, presentation, pitch or proposal. It's a completely kind of context, communication expectations (both you and your audience) and requires a different kind of communication skillset.

    For the OP, if you want to improve your communication ability, go to your local Toastmasters: they should have one in your university hopefully, but definitely at least one nearby.

    Toastmasters requires you to do a lot of different roles including many speeches, impromptu answers to questions, and evaluations of other members activities.

    The main benefit of Toastmasters over the literature teacher is that the club will have a range of viewpoints, a variety of tasks, and most importantly, a lot of valuable insight and experience that you can tap into.
     
  5. Jun 24, 2012 #4

    marcusl

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    Re: Most useful elective undergrad courses for a physics student wanting to diversify

    Written and verbal skills are complementary, but different. Do both if you can!
     
  6. Jun 24, 2012 #5
    Re: Most useful elective undergrad courses for a physics student wanting to diversify

    I second this, good writing skills are essential and is not necessarily attained by verbal speech.
     
  7. Jun 24, 2012 #6
    Re: Most useful elective undergrad courses for a physics student wanting to diversify

    Learn a new language. Language courses are a very nice break from heavy math and science oriented courses. They also tend be a lot less stressful (at least that is my experience), and are quite enjoyable.

    It also opens up opportunities for working/studying abroad, meeting new people etc.
     
  8. Jun 24, 2012 #7
    Re: Most useful elective undergrad courses for a physics student wanting to diversify

    It depends on what field of physics you want to specialize in. A good knowledge of biochemistry is very useful in biophysics, chemistry is useful for nuclear (i.e. diffusion out of targets in ion beam facilities) or solid state physics, anatomy is useful in medical physics and so on. :)
     
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