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Triple major in EE, Math, and Physics?

  1. Apr 4, 2009 #1
    First of all, I don't come here that often so I didn't know where to post this. I'm still in High School so my question is not really of big importance (yet).
    I just wanted to know if a triple major in Electrical Engineering, Mathematics, and Physics is possible (And is it hard?).
    Thanks for the responses.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 4, 2009 #2
    What are you planning to do with 3 degrees once you graduate after all those years? With the EE major, I had to minor in math. If you wish to do R&D in the field of electronics, but not device fabrication at the sub-atomic scale, then I'd recommend EE with a masters program. An MSEE, or Ph.D. EE would be more marketable than 3 BS degrees. Likewise, if pure science is what you seek, then an MS phy or Ph.D. phy is better than 3 BS degrees.

    Just my 2 cents.

    marcus e
  4. Apr 4, 2009 #3
    Well, it's just that I want the knowledge. What does this mean? I want to take physics classes not offered by an EE major, and I also want to take some math classes not needed for EE or Physics majors. However, it is just for pure gaining of knowledge, not for my career. I want to get a Masters in EE and work for some company.

    Should I just do a double major in EE/Physics, with a Mathematics (applied) minor?

    Again, I'm only in High School, so this is not of great importance.
  5. Apr 4, 2009 #4


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    Staff: Mentor

    Welcome to the PF, pablos. I think you will enjoy your time here.

    I definitely encourage you to continue to pursue all of your interests and passions in math, physics and engineering. That is definitely a great path to go down, and you really don't have to make any big decisions about which one to focus on until near the end of your sophomore year in college. That's when you would decide if you still want to double major, or if you want to focus on one path. The "lower division" courses (first 2 years of college) are very similar for EE ahd Physics, and not that different from Math.

    In the mean time, definitely keep pursuing your interest in math and physics and science in general. What year are you in HS? What science fair projects have you done so far? Does your HS have a physics club, a math club? Have you put together an electronics project kit or two yet? There are lots of things you can do now, that will help you learn more in the sciences, and also help you get ready for your undergraduate degree decisions.

    For the record, I was planning on an EE/ME double major when I entered undergrad, but quickly found out that my main passions were Physics and EE. I ended up deciding to get the BSEE and MSEE degrees for financial reasons, but Physics was still my first love...
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2009
  6. Apr 5, 2009 #5
    ^Thank you
  7. Apr 5, 2009 #6
    Your last question, "And is it hard?"

    Yes, a triple major will mean that you will have an awful lot of requirements to fulfill, specifically the major requirements for all three degrees. You could find that taking a lot of time and not leading to what you really want.

    You might want to take the engineering degree and simply take all the math and physics courses that would have been in those degrees, for example. This can be done, without having to fulfill the degree requirements for those degrees. It can also be played other ways. The point is, you don't have to get three degrees to get all of the major courses that you want.
  8. Apr 5, 2009 #7
    I agree with this. There is too much redundancy here. Two degrees is OK if you really feel passionately about it, but grad school is a much better way to go. In grad school you are expected to broaden your knowledge base. I did MS and PhD in EE and took so many Physics and ME courses (ocean engineering too). I never felt the need to take any math courses because engineering and physics covers applied math so incredibly well. However, if you are interested in areas of math not covered with engineering and physics, by all means study those areas too.

    Another point is that you don't need to take courses and get degrees to study things you are passionate about. One of the key benefits of college is that you learn how to teach yourself. After that you can pick up any book and learn on your own.

    Also, if you get the right job, you can get paid to learn every day. I've learned much more on the job than in school. Undergraduate work is just the launching pad that gives you the fundamentals. I'd recommend that you get through undergrad work with either a physics or engineering degree and then to a job, grad school, post-doc etc. as quickly as possible.
  9. Apr 6, 2009 #8
    Wow, thank you guys. I really appreciate the comments and suggestions
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