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Undergraduate Math for Quantum Optics vs Particle Physics

  1. Dec 16, 2015 #1
    I'm halfway through my junior year and I'm hoping to do Quantum Optics or Particle Physics in graduate school (I'm doing the recommended courses for both since I'm still undecided).

    Besides the math required from the physics major (ie. Calculus, linear algebra, ODEs, PDEs, complex analysis), what advanced math courses should I take for each respective field (Quantum Optics and Particle Physics)?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 16, 2015 #2


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    Don't think the two fields have strongly different accents in this respect (*) ; your toolkit is already quite impressive. If you want to go the experimental way, some numerical analysis is good to have. (Perhaps for theoreticans too, but I don't really know :smile: )

    (*) do they differ math wise in your 'recommend' list ?
  4. Dec 16, 2015 #3
    Well, my toolkit isn't entirely full; I'll be doing PDEs next semester.

    That's the problem; the recommended courses for each field only lists physics courses, no math. Which is why I'm asking for people's insight/advice.
  5. Dec 16, 2015 #4
    I'm not in advanced classes for physics yet, but I've discussed what math classes are good to take for a physics major with one of my professors. For some reason at the university I plan to attend after college, they only really have four required math classes, Calculus I, II, III and ODE, for a physics major. But if you want to be good with physics you should take more than that, so I'm probably going to be doing a dual major in mathematics or get a minor in math.

    My professor told me he wished he had taken more statistics classes, like Advanced Statistical Theory. I've read that Probability and Statistics classes can help you with, but are not necessary for, Quantum Mechanics classes and the like. So if you go the Quantum Optics route, maybe taking some advanced Statistics and Statistical theory could help?

    Again, just a suggestion, I'm only in my sophomore year right now. :P
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