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Physics Post-Bac

  1. Dec 9, 2014 #1
    Hi PF! I have a B.A. in Philosophy, but later in college I developed more of a passion for physics, and would like to return to school. The idea right now is to study independently for 2 years (I'll need at least that much time to save up some money), and then enroll in a post-bac program that can prepare me for grad school. Can anyone offer an opinion on the program at Columbia? They're the only school I've been able to find with a post-bac program that actually caters to physics. Any other advice on how to pursue this goal would be appreciated. I didn't take any physics in college, and only a little bit of math. However, in the last year I've learned trig, differential calc, integral calc, and little multivariable calc. I'm hoping I'd be able to place out of as much of the pre-requisite math as possible. Currently, my biggest concern is making sure that I use the next couple of years wisely, in terms of making the most thorough preparations I can, and that's where I could use the most guidance. Thanks!
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 11, 2014 #2


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    I've never heard of a post-Bac position, so this is a new one on me.

    You are in an awkward position with respect to math and physics at the undergraduate level. Why not simply enroll for a BS in Physics, with the idea that you can advance place out of many general ed requirements? This would allow you to look at a broad spectrum of colleges.

    Why are you doing this? What goal do you hope to reach?
  4. Dec 11, 2014 #3
    Thanks for your response! I thought a post-bac may be more tailored to someone with a B.A. already under their belt. That being said, I'm definitely interested in a B.S. program, too. I know the physics post-bac is kind of a singular thing, which is why I was hoping someone might be able to provide some info on whether it actually could be the better option for my education/career, which is really the important part. I'm doing this because I am fascinated by physics, and I want a career in science. Unfortunately, I made other decisions with school and work, and achieving this goal is now going to require some more creativity.
  5. Dec 15, 2014 #4
    How about you work full time and take calc and physics 1, 2, 3 (and possibly Differential equations and linear algebra) at a local community college as a part time student? That way, you can enter a university as a junior and take the core physics courses and graduate in 2 years.
  6. Dec 15, 2014 #5
    It's funny you say this, because I just found that the nearest CC has calc classes early enough to take before work, and programming classes on weekends. The classes with labs are really hard to work into my schedule, but I'm taking it one step at a time, and perhaps a solution will materialize. Thanks!
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