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The right mindset for an undergraduate physics student

  1. Oct 22, 2012 #1
    I see a lot of comments or threads by people who are looking to take Physics at university for some particular reason or another. I'm generally interested in Physics, I don't know what I want to be at the end of it, I haven't got some sort of theory I want to prove and achieve this by undertaking a degree, I just want to learn as much about the universe as I can and be a part of whatever discovery, whether it's through an applied route or theoretical, and whether discoveries are a direct result of my contribution or indirect (of course acknowledging that 9/10 it won't have contributed to anything). My question is: what is the most appropriate mindset to have when I start my first semester at university, and throughout the course, that would serve me best?
     
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  3. Oct 22, 2012 #2

    MarneMath

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    Isn't that enough? Add the desire to work hard and learn that knowledge and you'll be well on your well to starting a physics major.
     
  4. Oct 22, 2012 #3
    Cheers. I don't know really, which was my reason for asking, is it enough (with added attributes as you say)? If so, that's great. I don't know if maybe it would be better to concentrate on one field from the outset, but this might stunt my interest in all the other fields, but at the same time I'm worried that if I try and concentrate equally across the board, I'll end up averaging in everything with a lack of focus.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2012
  5. Oct 22, 2012 #4

    MarneMath

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    You can't know if you like a field or not until you get more real information about the field. Go in with an open mind, the way things usually work is that some things will appeal to you more than others. You will tend to focus on those things more and more. I didn't know for a while what aspect of mathematics I liked, I ended up going the more 'applied route' but I didn't start college saying that was my goal. I was clueless, but I liked taking mathematical ideas and seeing how they can relate to 'real problems.' That appeals to me.
     
  6. Oct 22, 2012 #5
    That's fair. I guess I'm more of an applied person too, by nature, but I don't really know what sort of things this entails, seeing as physics is just so broad for potential career paths, I don't know where theoretical and applied diverge.
     
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