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Physics or Astronomy/Astrophysics?

  1. Jun 23, 2012 #1
    I intend to study astronomy/astrophysics during my undergraduate study at college. However, I have heard some people say that its better to first get a solid undergraduate foundation in physics and then go to graduate school for studying astronomy/astrophysics. I'll be applying to US universities this year.
    I cannot figure out what is better for my future. Can anyone please shed some light on this matter?
    Your help is highly appreciated

    Thank You
    Kamaljeet Dhiman
    Chandigarh, India
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 23, 2012 #2


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    If you're doing college in the US, plan to major in physics and take courses in astronomy, math, and computer science. Go to a school that has opportunities for undergraduate research. Graduate schools in astronomy in the US require you take the physics GRE, and you need to major in physics to do well on it. Astronomy graduate programs include a great deal of physics. If the school offers a double major in physics and astronomy, go for it, but most don't because astronomy by itself is not all that useful of a major.
  4. Jun 23, 2012 #3
    I agree that astronomy as an undergrad major is pretty useless, from what I've seen. Major in physics at a school that has astronomy classes/research available. My school doesn't offer an undergrad astronomy major, however they have an astronomy grad program and a lot of the faculty works on astrophysics projects and some work with NASA.
  5. Jun 24, 2012 #4
    Alright...so i'll apply for physics for undergrad study.
    Thanks everyone!
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