Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Studying Recommended mathematics classes for studying solid state devices/physics

  1. Feb 28, 2010 #1
    I recently completed a degree in Computer Engineering and am looking to pursue a Masters and eventually a PhD in Electrical Engineering; specifically in solid state devices. One of my concerns is the potential lack of knowledge in mathematics I may have. As a Computer Engineering undergrad I took the classes in Calculus, Ordinary Differential Equations, Linear Algebra and Finite Math (CmpE obviously not being as mathematics intensive as a degree in EE).

    I'd like to know from fellow physics/EE graduate students if there are any advanced mathematics classes/disciplines you would recommend knowing.

  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 1, 2010 #2
    partial differential equations, modern/quantum physics
  4. Mar 1, 2010 #3


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    I'd highly recommend taking taking some numerical analysis courses (complex and real number systems). My boss has an M.Sc. in EE and he has mentioned on a number of occasions just how beneficial his (complex & real) analysis courses were. There may be a course which is more introductory; covering the theory of calculus of functions of one variable. Check with your maths department.
  5. Mar 1, 2010 #4
    Wait, are you recommending numerical analysis or real analysis?

    Numerical analysis is certainly important (I recommend it too), but I have a hard time seeing how anything in an abstract real analysis course taught by a math department has anything to do with engineering.
  6. Mar 1, 2010 #5


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Sorry for the confusion! :redface:

    When he said 'numerical analysis,' I assumed he was talking about complex and real analysis. The mistake is mine.
  7. Mar 1, 2010 #6
    It's cool, I just thought maybe I was missing something. I know that the theory of Fourier series is taught in real analysis, and that can most certainly be applied, but...

    Numerical is definitely important. My course covered numerical ODEs, PDEs, non-linear systems, numerical linear algebra, etc. It was required for MEs and a couple other engineering majors.
  8. Mar 1, 2010 #7
    Thanks for all the replies! I am teaching myself PDE at the moment. My next task is to enroll in a class that delves into numerical analysis. Reading a number of solid state/semiconductor physics textbooks I can already see the value of having knowledge in numerical analysis.

    Keep those suggestions coming!
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook