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Things to Know.

  1. Dec 30, 2012 #1
    My Question is
    1.What are the things one [Physics, Mathematics or Engineering Major] must have to know except their Academics.
    Some commonly are English & Russian. Typing. C or C++.
    2.When one are completely able to Research Papers/Journals.and understand them.
    or, What are the things to Know before reading Research Papers.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 30, 2012 #2
    1. For what purpose? Grad admissions? Employment? You may not need to know how to program for either, but programming is useful.
    2. Unless you are already a specialist in the field you probably will need to do some extensive research before you can understand many papers. I guess it also depends. I was reading a paper on biophysical simulations and it only took me a few hours to really digest it with limited background, but most papers published in particle or mathematical physics are beyond me.
  4. Dec 30, 2012 #3
    Arsenic, Thanks For The Reply.
    My Purpose is not for the admissions. Purpose is to know what are the essential things that should must be known by all PME Majors. As example Knowing the LaTeX is not required for Maths Major but if they Know it then its Better.
  5. Dec 30, 2012 #4


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    Staff Emeritus
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    I'm afraid these questions are somewhat confusing.

    In order to be able to understand a research paper or journal article, one should be familiar with the particular field of research, beyond an understanding of the basics in the particular field. Ostensibly, that understanding comes from an academic program including upper level courses, or beyond.

    In order to produce a good research paper or journal article, one should understand how to write (compose/construct) a scientific paper, which normally comes from practice, often writing one's thesis or dissertation, and perhaps being a co-author on various research papers and journal articles. Researchers also often write progress reports on their research.

    It does help to have skills in programming languages, analytical software, typing, use of software like LaTeX.
  6. Dec 30, 2012 #5
    Astronuc, I am an Engineering Major[Mechanical] with Physics minor. Since last year I an Reading Nature Physics & Physics Today and most of the articles are confusing to me (because I only have knowledge of Classical Physics) but I read them completely.
    So My question is If you are a Physics Major (Undergraduate) and Read that Journals and you don't understand that but you want to understand that then what you do? (If my Academia (i.e.I already read that topic in textbooks) is Perfect)
  7. Jan 1, 2013 #6


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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    If one only has a background/experience in Classical Physics, then one needs to learn quantum physics and relativity.

    One should indentify the points that are confusing and then find an appropriate text or texts that provide the necessary background material.
  8. Jan 2, 2013 #7
    I have a bit of an addendum to the OP's question.

    How does one make the intellectual jump from senior level undergraduate classes into research? I am doing a senior project research in Differential Equations this semester, and the papers that I am reading are FAR beyond the academic level of difficulty of any "normal" upper-level class that I have taken. Is there a secret to making the big step into big-boy (big girl) research?
  9. Jan 2, 2013 #8
    Self-study, pretty much. A lot of content in research will not be taught in courses at school
  10. Jan 2, 2013 #9
    Well, I found the solution,Ask the Professors or Post here on PF.
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