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Switching to physics

  1. May 7, 2005 #1
    I'm studying electronic engineering - the first year, but the only subjects I really like are Math, Physics and C programming. I'm really bored of all the EE stuff - like circuits, measurements, etc.. I wanted to study optoelectronics, but now I found out that it's too technically oriented and I'm more interested in fields like quantum and nonlinear optics, which I can't study on EE. Now I'm thinking about switching to physics, which would not be a big problem, but I'm not really sure if it is a perspective field and if I will find a good job having it as major.
    Do you thing studying quantum optics is a good choice?
    Should I switch to physics?
    Thanks a lot.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 7, 2005 #2

    Dr Transport

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    Who says that you can't study nonlinear optics and quantum optics in EE???? The university where I got my PhD had both of those courses taught in the EE and cross-listed in Physics. Remember that the best engineers will have a good handle on their physics. If you want to learn physics, take it on as a minor, a friend of mine did that years ago, ultimately got a PhD in Low Temperature Physics but in his case he needed his EE degree to help set up the experimental apparatus and its associated electronics.
     
  4. May 8, 2005 #3
    Absolutely. Nonlinear optics and quantum optics (quantum electronics as well) are both very much in the realm of Electrical engineering.
     
  5. May 8, 2005 #4

    Dr Transport

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    A quick look at EE and Physics web-sites shows about 50% or better of the EE graduate programs will have some type of photonics concentration.
     
  6. May 8, 2005 #5
    Well - in my EE program there is only the possibility of studying optoelectronics - but it's focused mainly on optical communication systems and microwave electronics, which i find not as interesting. I will not even have courses of quantum physics or nonlinear optics in this program. And the only program giving the opportunity of studying quantum and nonlinear optics is physics.
    I could also continue to study EE and then choose physics as a graduate program, but there would be the problem that I will not have the required theoretical basis.
     
  7. May 8, 2005 #6

    Dr Transport

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    Take a minor in physics, you should have most of the courses that you would need and could learn the rest. My friend who did a PhD in low temp physics had exactly two undergrad quantum courses and did very well. If you intend on studying in nonlinear and quantum optics and your school doesn't do that kind of work, go someplace for grad school that has what you want.
     
  8. May 8, 2005 #7

    cronxeh

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    I dont see the big deal here

    If you simple want to take those courses (because nonlinear/quantum optics is at most 2-3 courses) you dont need to change your whole major - but if you seem to want all the courses in another major then you should. Look at the curriculum for EE and Physics and read course descriptions up to and beyond senior years - first year grad year of that major, and if you dont understand what the descriptions mean just go to wikipedia.org and find out
     
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