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Retired and looking for low cost Physics Undergrad

  1. May 17, 2015 #1
    I retired Last year and have been traveling for a year now. I have decided I would like to go back to school and study Physics or Cosmology. I am looking for a physics undergraduate program that is "low cost", in English and in an area with a cost of living that is affordable for someone on a fixed income. For example Latvia University has a Chemistry program in English where the tuition is 4000 euro a year (international student) and living expenses in the area are about 600 Euro a month. This is well with in my budget but they do not have a physics program in English, just the Chem. Google has not been to helpful to me in researching this topic. In advice would be greatly appreciated.

  2. jcsd
  3. May 17, 2015 #2

    Vanadium 50

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    I think you're probably going to have to give us a rough idea of where you are willing to go. US? UK? Europe? India?
  4. May 17, 2015 #3
    anywhere except India :)
  5. May 17, 2015 #4
    If you consider 4,000 euro (~$4500 USD) to be cheap, then you should have no issue finding an undergrad institution in the US which can accommodate you. Since you also need to live in an area with a low cost of living, I'd check out the Midwest. In a lot of state schools here (Illinois, Michigan, etc.), you can take 3 or so classes and be under $4500.
  6. May 18, 2015 #5
    4500 will pay for three classes in the US or an entire 2 semesters or 12 courses in Latvia. Cost of living in the Midwest is much higher. For example I am from Columbus Ohio, One can rent an Apartment for about $800 a month in the university area. (In Latvia you can rent a room for $200 Euro a month. Food prices in Eastern Europe are a quarter of the prices in US.
  7. May 19, 2015 #6
    Heyy Brady, I think I know something that you are going to find perfect.
    There is a Physics program at Leipzig University (Germany) which offers Physics undergrad as well as postgrad program in English. The name of the program is International Physics Studies Program (IPSP).
    The best thing about the program is that there is absolutely no tuition fees at all. You just have to pay a small amount of semester fees which is around 200 EUR per semester. You can travel for free in the city with the semester card that you get after paying the semester fees.
    Moreover, Leipzig is considered to be one of the cheapest city in the whole country. Therefore, you can expect to spend roughly 600-700 EUR per month for living.
    Therefore, for three year of studies, it will cost you around EUR 26,400 at max.

    I hope this helps. All the best for your future endeavours.

    -A proud Indian
  8. May 19, 2015 #7
    That is fantastic. Thank you Sid0123.
  9. May 20, 2015 #8
    Welcome :) All the best!
  10. May 20, 2015 #9
    Always heard Norway was cheapest(like no tuition at all), but that's probably for EU people only and I donno if they naturally have a BSc in English.

    There's probably other cheap places out there, but those must be way down the Human Development Index(former second or third world countries) while Norway ranks no.1 each year.

    Of course living expenses are a different issue. Better not buy alcohol there.
    Last edited: May 20, 2015
  11. May 22, 2015 #10
    What's the max yearly tuition you're willing to pay? You never said. I know of a LOT of low cost universities in the US, even for out-of-state students. But, I need to know what your cutoff is. I can tell you now, though, that if you're looking for dirt cheap you're not going to find it in the U.S. unless...

    You move to Wyoming and establish residency. The U of Wyoming will cost $4891 for full-time WY residents for the 2015-2016 school year. The whole year, so it's probably not going to skyrocket before you establish residency if you go this route. You can move to the Laramie area and take the freshman and sophomore general education, math, and physics courses at a community college for little money.

    Then, as soon as you establish residency for tuition purposes (different from regular residency), transfer to UWYO. The community college courses will either automatically transfer to UWYO or there will be an articulation agreement in place for the B.S. in Astronomy major that will get the same result as long as you met all the requirements. The U of Wyoming is the least expensive public university in the country. When you transfer, you may also be awarded a transfer merit scholarship (if you have a high GPA), if they give them (a lot of schools do). Check the transfer admissions section of the website, there should be info or links. If you're a veteran I don't think you have to live there a year first to establish residency, IIRC.

    Again, UWYO is as cheap as it gets for full-time study in the USA going full pay with no scholarships or grant aid. Low cost tuition today generally means under $10,000 a year. That's the reality we're living in. But, there are quite a few public universities that I can refer you to that are at or under $8K a year for full-time out-of-state students. There are a few private colleges, too. Let me know if you want the list.


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