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

Senior college search

  1. Feb 10, 2007 #1
    high school senior here looking to major in mathematics/physics; in a dilemma and looking for assistance (I have a few questions).

    I haven't taken my SAT yet. Would it be benificial for me to take it now in my senior year in hopes of being able to attend a different school - even if it is a semester late?

    I've been accepted to MSU (Michigan State), is that a good math/physics college?

    My AP Calc and AP Physics tests are in May. Should I wait to get these scores, along with SAT scores, before I apply??

    I know that I seem very unprepared for my senior year and I know that it would be very possible to find out these answers on my own, but I want to know your opinions. Thanks a lot :smile:
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2007
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 10, 2007 #2
    you better start sending out applications now, some of the deadlines have already past, and by may most schools are sending their decisions out to students.

    If you haven't taken the SAT then it would be a good idea to take them now, bu apply to various schools now, as you can always update your application once they've recieved it, you can't send one in after the deadline.
  4. Feb 10, 2007 #3
    I have to ask if it is your senior year, why are you just now starting to think about taking the SAT and looking at schools to apply to? Most schools have deadlines in January or February for applications excluding some schools that have rolling admission and probably local state colleges, if you wait until May to start applying to schools you will find that your choices are severely limited because most deadlines would have been up a long while ago.
  5. Feb 10, 2007 #4
    Have you take the ACT? This test is accepted by most schools in the midwest. If so, then you might be able to use your ACT score to apply to colleges which you think have good physics and math programs.

    Not that MSU's program is bad. I don't know much about this school, but I've never heard anything particularly bad about their physics or math programs (or course, I haven't heard much at all about their program, so certainly investigate). My advice is to not take a semester off. If you don't get accepted anywhere else, then go to MSU. You can always reapply next fall, and transfer to a different school after your first year. Remember, it's the school you graduate from that matters, not the school you transfer from. And besides that, there really aren't that many "bad" schools in America; you're bound to get a good education wherever you go. As long as you didn't get your physics degree from Bob Jones University (believe it or not they have a physics program) or something of that nature, you won't be disqualified from graduate programs on the basis of the school that you attended. Your grades, research experience, and GREs are much more important than the name of the school on your degree.

    Furthermore, you might get to MSU and find that they have a great physics program, in which case you wouldn't need to transfer at all.
  6. Feb 10, 2007 #5
    I did my bachelors at MSU so I might be able to help a little bit. MSU is a leader in nuclear physics programs as they have a cyclotron lab ( http://www.nscl.msu.edu/ ) located right next to the physics and chemistry buildings. A potential disadvantage of going to a school and department as large as MSU is that you'll have a lot of students in your classes, even at the advanced undergrad level. That never bothered me though as professors always have office hours so if you have questions you can go ask then.

    Of course, there are advantages to having a large program too. For one, they just built a new building in ~2003 to house the physics and few other biomedical science programs. Also, the funding is always good so that the things you use will typically be top notch. A large department also means a large amount of faculty doing a wider range of research activities.

    If you have any more specific questions I can probably answer those too, either by PM or posted here. I don't know as much about the math department but since I had to take courses there, I can try ;)

    Good luck in your applications
  7. Feb 11, 2007 #6
    In your current status, I would take your ACTs, you SATs and your AP tests, and hold onto those score. Then I would be planning ong attending a community college for the next year, along with working.

    Your a little late to the game at this point, being that many of the application deadlines were due in january and this month (some are due in march; however, so there is still hope). Pick a few schools that have applications due at the end of March, and get those tests done now (don't worry about the AP tests, if you get into a college, you will be sending those score in directly to the school you decide to go to when you take your AP test).

    Sorry to be the one that has to say the bad news, but for the up coming fall term, you are probably out of luck.

    Another thing you might want to think about is looking and seeing if the colleges you are interested in have admissions for the winter term of the coming school year. Better to have a late start, than no start at all.
  8. Feb 11, 2007 #7
    There you go Ryo. It looks like MSU would be as good a place as any to get your physics degree.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook