1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Physics Levels

  1. Oct 21, 2009 #1
    At what level (graduate, PhD, etc...) do people start learning theories, such as String Theory and Loop Quantum Gravity?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 21, 2009 #2
    Depends what you mean by theories....you start learning Newtonian Dynamic Theory your first semester of undergraduate physics. By senior year of undergraduate, you should have a basic grip on EM Theory, and basic Quantum Theory....as far as String Theory and Quantum Gravity, I don't think you get into these until the graduate level, but I believe some schools have intro courses for these fields available at the upper undergraduate level.
  4. Oct 21, 2009 #3
    I see...so does that mean that when someone applies for an assistant-ship when applying for a graduate school under the intentions of working in those two fields, they take under consideration an adviser who does research in the particular areas (meaning that you can start work in String Theory or Quantum Gravity at graduate level)?
  5. Oct 21, 2009 #4
    If we're only talking about the two "Theories" you've mentioned, yes this seems to be something first studied at the graduate level, possibly though research under a professor researching this field.
  6. Oct 21, 2009 #5
    I see...now let us say that someone who only did the minimum physics courses (on the basis that physics isn't his/her major) required for graduate school of physics and does relatively well in GRE (this isn't me, this is hypothetical)...what are his chances of working under a professor for these two particular fields (String Theory/Quantum Gravity)?
  7. Oct 22, 2009 #6
    Those requires a huge amount of maths, quite a lot more than what most maths major takes, in addition to require most of the modern theoretical physics so I guess that it would get really rough if you have a poor background like that.

    Those subjects are usually not studied at the masters levels either by the way.
  8. Oct 22, 2009 #7


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    I consider this to be extremely unlikely, unless "minimum physics courses" includes a lot more than most people would consider to be the case.
  9. Oct 22, 2009 #8


    User Avatar
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    The minimum ammount of physics courses needed for grad school is such that if you were going to take them as electives in order to prepare for the GRE, you might as well just double major in physics.

    Four years of undergraduate physics is needed if you want to be prepared for physics grad school.
  10. Oct 22, 2009 #9
    I see...those were well brought answers...thanks.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook