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Should I do a masters?

  1. Oct 3, 2009 #1
    Hello, well I'm on my third year in a UK University doing Physics with Astrophysics, and I'm wondering whether I should proceed to do a Masters on it, Im currently enrolled in the undergraduate masters but how different is this to a MSc (normal masters), in terms of difficulty, learning approach etc.

    My ambition in life is to be a spacecraft engineer and be involved in the space industry. Even though the salaries are not as appealing as other jobs, I would enjoy what I would be doing. Currently I'm thinking of getting some experience else where and earn some decent amount of money then later move on to what I would like to do. Im a bit worried to find out that I would be overqualified if I were to go for a Masters, when I decide to apply to be an actuary or something else.

    How many job opportunities will be left open for me if I proceed with the masters?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 3, 2009 #2
    Why do you major in astrophysics if you want to be a spacecraft engineer?
  4. Oct 3, 2009 #3
    Good question. There is a degree called Physics with space science and technology, but If I am to apply to jobs such as actuary or medical physics by any chance in the future it will be less appealing to employ me rather than having astrophysics. Perhaps astrophysics is applied in more places such as aerospace and so on and seems less specialised?
  5. Oct 3, 2009 #4
    I study astrophysics. It has absolutely nothing to do with aerospace. If you're interested in manned or unmanned spaceflight, you'll want to go into engineering. A two-year MSc in engineering would be a good idea, and would be fairly easy of a transition with your physics BSc (I'm in the USA, so I don't know anything about the undergrad master's programs in the UK). I don't personally recommend a physics master's though. If you want to work in industry, you can do this with a physics BSc. If you want to be an astrophysicist, you'll need a PhD in physics or astrophysics. The problem with a physics master's is that it's in a gray area. You're sort of specialized, but not enough to be an academic physicist. I know people with physics MS degrees who are having trouble finding jobs. So I wouldn't recommend a physics MS unless you want to do something like community college teaching in the states.
  6. Oct 4, 2009 #5
    Yea, I've actually heard both sides of the argument, which is a Masters can make you overqualified or too specific for most jobs. But then I hear people say that nower days its very competitive, and a MS in physics looks very attractive to employers, because of how good you are at problem solving. I know people that have MS in physics with space science and are working in an accountancy firm. The carreer route Id like to eventually go to which is spacecraft engineering at a specific company also welcomes both BSc and MS in physics, and I would probably have a better chance of getting employed if I had a MS.

    If I were to go for a MS in engineering i think that would be more specific than one in Physics, a business firm would not employ an engineer? but will employ a physicist for many reasons.

    I suppose it depends which jobs I am applying too at the end of the day, I wouldn't like to think I would be overqualified once I'd finish my masters.
  7. Oct 5, 2009 #6
    Any feedback will greatly be appreciated thanks!
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