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Schools Taking biochemistry at university

  1. Oct 30, 2008 #1
    Im thinking about possibly taking biochemistry at university but im not sure if I need to take physics as well. The program doesnt require u to take it, just biology and chemistry but is it best to take physics as well? It is a bachelors degree in biochemistry.
     
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  3. Oct 30, 2008 #2

    Ygggdrasil

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    Re: biochemistry

    It depends what you want to do. A lot of exciting research is going on in the areas of physical biochemistry/biophysics and many cool tools in biochemistry rely on basic principles of physics (e.g. light microscopy, optical tweezers, x-ray crystallography, NMR, electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, etc.).

    That said, I went through an undergrad biochemistry degree taking only the 1st year freshman physics courses. I did, however, learn most of my physics-related info from physical chemistry courses.

    I would recommend definitely taking at least the freshman introductory physics courses, as knowing the fundamentals of physics will be important. Anything afterward depends on your own interest in physics (although I would also recommend taking thermodynamics and other physical chemistry courses through the chemistry department).
     
  4. Oct 31, 2008 #3
    Re: biochemistry

    cool, and overall are u happy with ur choice of taking a biochemistry degree? and its all about chemical composition and reactions and all that, that make life possible right?
     
  5. Oct 31, 2008 #4

    Ygggdrasil

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    Re: biochemistry

    Yes, I enjoy studying biochemistry. It is very much about understanding the molecules of life and the chemical reactions that occur in cells. At a more fundamental level, I like biochemistry because it seeks to dissect the complex processes in biology, identify the molecules involved, and understand them in terms of basic chemical and physical concepts.
     
  6. Nov 1, 2008 #5
    Re: biochemistry

    very interesting, when it comes to math, do you advise taking calculus or is an advanced algebra course good enough to do well in biochemistry at uni?
     
  7. Nov 1, 2008 #6

    Ygggdrasil

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    Re: biochemistry

    Becuase I'm interested in the more biophysical side of biochemistry, I actually minored in math as many new areas of biochemistry involve a bit of math. I would suggest taking 1.5-2 years of math covering calculus, multi-variable calculus, linear algebra and differential equations. Certainly, no one should be allowed to receive a degree in any science without at least one year of calculus.
     
  8. Nov 1, 2008 #7

    Moonbear

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    Re: biochemistry

    You may not need the additional math and physics courses, but as ygggdrasil hinted, it really broadens your background to include that. Also, you never know what you might want to do with the degree once you have it, and if you have calc I and II under your belt along with an intro physics course, you'll be covered in case a graduate or professional program you apply to later requires it. If you have not taken calculus yet, and if these are not required courses for your program, take calculus I and II first, THEN take physics since you don't have to complete them in any time limit to take other courses. Physics will make a TON more sense if you take calculus first.

    Likewise, I'd recommend anyone getting a physics degree to take at least one intro bio course, just to have a well-rounded education in the sciences.
     
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