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Physics or Computer Science? Starting college late and I welcome your opinions

  1. Jan 8, 2013 #1
    Hi all!

    BLUF: I'm starting school rather late (I'm 25) and I'm very interested in Physics and Computer Science. Logically, CS seems like a better fit for me due to my hobbies, but my heart is set on Physics.

    BACKGROUND: I'm just now starting school at 25 after being in the Air Force for the past 6 years and 4 months. I'm "good enough" at math but after 6 years away from it, I'm being forced to pretty much start over at the Algebra level. I love Physics but I also love computers (hence, the interest in CS as well). I'm afraid that if I pursue Physics, I'll end up with my PhD at some point in my mid-thirties (it might take me an extra semester or two just to catch up on my math). This isn't necessarily a problem but it doesn't sound ideal either. I know work with a B.S. in Physics is possible but, again, not ideal since I'm interested in original research.

    As far as CS is concerned, I spend quite a lot of time playing with computers and other technology, so logically it seems to line up w/ my hobbies more than Physics does. I feel like the benefit of CS is that it would be easier for me to get a decent job doing what I want with just a B.S. in CS vs just a B.S. in Physics.

    Sorry for the long post, but your feedback and opinions are welcome and greatly appreciated.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 8, 2013 #2
    Maybe you could talk to someone wherever you are applying to find out if you can structure your first year so that your options remain open until 2nd year of your degree? That way you'd be able to make a more informed choice.
  4. Jan 8, 2013 #3


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    Do a double major. Go through 4 years majoring in Physics and Computer science thus keeping your option open. If by the end of your degree, you feel that getting a job is more important, then you'll have your CS degree to help you out. If you feel that you really want your PhD, go that route.
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