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Schools Undergrad university course advice

  1. Feb 7, 2013 #1


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    Ok I've basically narrowed my choices down to physics, maths, computer science or electrical engineering.

    I'm not intending to go to a top university since they'd involve me having to move to england or scotland and even ignoring the economics of it (The course will be about x3 the price Just under 10k away compared with only 3.5k roughly here), I also have medical issues which means I need regular hospital visits so I can't really manage that if I'm out of the country.

    Also I think if I stay at home I've got more opportunities for scholarships and also extra classes such as foreign languages.

    I'd really love to study Maths / Physics (or possibly something like applied maths and physics) but since its not a top university I feel this would give a bad outlook for both jobs and / or for postgrad study.

    EE is sort of my good compromise, interesting and varied fields but good job prospects afterwards. Computer science I think would be pretty similar but I probably would be less inclined towards it because some of the modules are a bit, meh, in my opinion.

    If I was to study EE would I be able to do any of the four above at postgrad level afterwards, possibly allowing me to move to england or scotland at the same time?

    Also by going to a less highly ranked university is this going to massively affect both postgrad or career opportunities or could this be off set by doing things like additional language modules or gaining a scholarship and work experience?

    I'm sure I've got other stuff I want to ask but I just can't think of it right now.
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  3. Feb 8, 2013 #2


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    Ok I'm bullet point my problems as that might make the general point of the question clearer.

    *I would like to go to a good university but due to other factors, it wouldn't really be feasible. So I'm intending to go to the university closest to me which is ranked about ~25 - 30 (depending on the league table) in the Uk.

    *I feel that going there will allow me to achieve a better degree level (1st against a 2:1) and also would allow me to do extra stuff like a foreign language class or 2 that I wouldn't really have the time for if I was away.

    *Will these extras as well as hopefully a better degree classification off set the university's lower reputation for both jobs and postgrad entry to another institution?

    *I'm currently deciding between EE, Comp Sci or Maths/Physics, however I'm leaning towards EE as its got good career prospects (unless someone says that any of the other 3 would be better) and also its one of the best courses offered with a top 20 ranking and also loads of bursarys, scholarships and also work / industry experience as well.

    *However while I'm interested in the theory and applications of EE I'm not sure if a career in it would be right for me since although there's a wide range of fields most of them seem to move quite slowly due to all the legislation and regulations that have to be followed.

    *Comp sci, maths and physics however at my local university are not very well ranked and come about high 30s, would make them worse to take for undergrad if I wanted to continue on to postgrad study or to gain employment?

    *However if I studied EE would this still allow me to apply to postgrad courses in other fields like maths,physics, computer science or even something like materials science and nanotechnologies?
  4. Feb 11, 2013 #3
    Don't put too much emphasis on league tables. An ~25 uni is still a good uni and a good degree from there will still give you good job opportunities. For example my first bash at uni I concentrated on league tables and ended up at imperial studying Chem Eng which was a year of hell. I realised my love was physics and needed to go somewhere I felt comfortable. Now I'm in third year of an ~25 uni and enjoying every minute.
    In summary go where you feel comfortable and only study something you really want to do. Employability for maths and physics graduates is good anyway.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2013
  5. Feb 12, 2013 #4


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    EE vs Maths and Comp sci / physics

    I've already made a post similar to this but I think I got the focus of my question wrong and focused too much on course / university reputation.

    Basically I've got my options narrowed down to 3 different options:

    *Electrical and Electronic Engineering, or
    *Maths and Computer Science, or
    *Applied Maths and Physics.

    I'm currently studying Maths, Physics, Chemistry and Computing at sixth form (Uk equivalent of US high school)

    I'm most certain about EE because of the good job prospects (although is this trend going to continue or is there a saturation point looming), however its not maybe the most exciting of fields (yes it can be interesting but something like power factor correction isn't exactly exciting material), and also its quite highly regulated and stuff takes ages to move forward(well as far as my experience with family members that are EEs is concerned).

    So I've been thinking about doing something involving maths and specifically maths and computer science since the comp sci should make it a more desirable degree for businesses or postgraduate organisations?

    Then applied maths and physics is probably what I'd ideally want to do but after some of the horror stories on here and elsewhere I've sort of turned against it due to the fact the outlook is pretty grim after graduation for jobs.

    Overall I'm also wanting to do a degree that leaves me open for as wide a range of things as possible afterwards, for example theres several different areas (specifically stuff to do with cybersecurity or nano / materials science) that I find very interesting and I think I would probably want to try and get into after I graduate, but which of these degrees if any leaves the widest possible spectrum open?

    Anyone got anything else to add or comments about those degrees or similar please feel free.

  6. Feb 12, 2013 #5


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    Re: EE vs Maths and Comp sci / physics

    I don't keep track of the fine details of the UK A level/uinivesrity entrance these days, but if you want to do a maths-focused degree, wouldn't you be better off doing Maths + Further maths, amd leave out Chemistry?

    Remember that A level maths has suffered more from grade inflation than some other subjects (44% getting A or A* grades in maths and 57% in further maths) so universities don't have much to work with in selecting applicants.

    Assuming you have a good grade in GCSE Chemistry, I would be surprised if a Chemistry A level would count as muich as Further Maths for any of your university options.
  7. Feb 12, 2013 #6


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    Re: EE vs Maths and Comp sci / physics

    Two threads merged. My fault that there were two threads on his similar questions.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2013
  8. Feb 13, 2013 #7


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    Re: EE vs Maths and Comp sci / physics

    I'm going to do Further Maths next year (I'm taking all of the A level Maths course this year)
  9. Feb 13, 2013 #8


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    Re: EE vs Maths and Comp sci / physics

    So I'll end up with (hopefully)

    A2 Maths
    A2 Further Maths
    A2 Physics
    A2 / AS Chemistry
    A2 / AS Computing (I'm not sure whether to keep both chem and comp or which one I should drop at A2)

    Aleph is there any good statistics out there on employment % for maths / computer science graduates as although most of them seem poor compared to EE I think there may be an element of statistical skew in them (ie. do they count post graduate studies since far more maths people do this than EEs)
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