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RunSwimSurf

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I initially planned on taking a summer programming course (if not, then next fall) but it seems as though I'd have to take 2 or 3 classes (due to prerequisites). I do not want to delay graduating. Also, these are programming classes in the Computer Engineering/Computer Science department.

The physics department (upper div) has these:

1. Physics With Symbolic Algebra Software (3)

Learning symbolic algebra programming (e.g. Mathematica) to enhance the problem-solving abilities of students in physics, engineering and mathematics. Interpolation and fitting of experimental data. Sophisticated graphics, animations, analytic calculations, and numerical solutions for a variety of physics problems.

2. Computational Methods in Theoretical Physics (3)

Symbolic (e.g. Maple/Mathematica) and numerical (e.g. Fortran 95/C++) programming, and their applications: e.g. classical mechanical Hamilton equations, quantum mechanical bound and scattering-state problems, Schrodinger equation, Lippmann-Schwinger equation, Dirac equation.

3. Computer Interfacing in Experimental Physics (3)

Modern data acquisition and analysis methods using computer-based equipment and high level software. Physics experiments performed with standard personal computers, research-quality data acquisition hardware, and programmable instruments. Computer use as tool in execution and interpretation of experiments.

My question is: would these physics classes be enough programming or would I need to supplement them with CompSci or CompEng classes? My undergrad advisor suggested I should take a programming class if I was interested, but that it was not truly necessary.

If self-taught programming is a good idea, any recommendations on which language(s) to learn (also any books)?

Thank you for your time.

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