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Programs Physics phD with engineering degree?

  1. May 23, 2008 #1
    Is it possible (common) to proceed to graduate studies in Astrophysics starting from a Masters degree in Engineering or Earth Sciences?

    Also is it too old to start studying for a physics phD at 30 after having worked some years outside academia?
    Last edited: May 23, 2008
  2. jcsd
  3. May 23, 2008 #2


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    We have an person who was previously engineering in our graduate program here. He is doing quite well. So, at least for him it works fine.

    As far as age is concerned, I don't believe that to be a big issue. There are several people here who are older than you are working toward their Ph.D. in physics. I am on of them, and I am currently writing my dissertation, have presented at multiple conferences, published papers etc. Actually I am avoiding writing my dissertation by writing this post.

    I am located in the US. I can not speak for other countries.
  4. May 23, 2008 #3


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    Yes to both.

    With respect to admissions, you need to contact the specific department and be sure to meet their admissions standards. You may be required to upgrade or take a few additional courses, but I know of several engineers who've easily made the cross over.

    With respect to age, you're only too old when you're dead. I think the bigger question is really one of financial stability. Grad students don't usually make a lot of money and their studies often demand a lot of their time. At 30ish lots of people are at a point where quitting a full time job just isn't economically feasible - especially when a family is involved. If you're in a position to make the kind of sacrifices needed, age itself isn't a problem.
  5. Jul 23, 2008 #4
    Hi Link,

    Did you make it to a PHysics PhD? I need to know because I am also an engineer planning to do a PhD in Physics.
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