1. PF Contest - Win "Conquering the Physics GRE" book! Click Here to Enter
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Where to apply for undergrad.

  1. Jul 26, 2013 #1
    Hi, this fall I'll be a senior in high school and with the Common Application nearly out, I need to finish my final college list. The reason I'm posting on this forum is because my goal is to ultimately attend grad school for a PhD in physics. This is my current list that I've come up with after doing a good amount of searching:

    Strong interest
    -Harvey Mudd

    Decent interest
    -UT - Austin

    My 2 backups are cheap state schools.

    When I was looking through schools, I mainly looked at the physics faculty, courses offered, and PhD production rates. This turned up a lot of LACs like Williams, Carleton, Reed, HMC. However I have heard that LACs tend to not offer some higher-level classes (and even some important ones like Thermo) some years due to lack of student interest/lack of faculty. Would this be a problem at the LACs on my list? Everything else about them seems so great, though: smaller class sizes, great faculty, no grad students taking up research opportunities. How are these schools looked upon by grad schools in comparison to larger research universities like UT - Austin and Cornell?

    Also, is it worth it to apply to Caltech/MIT for undergrad physics and would they suit me better than the schools on my list?

    My transcript is decent (35 ACT 36 Math, 800 SAT Math 2 + Chemistry, 3.8 UW GPA) so feel free to suggest other schools.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 29, 2013 #2
    You might as well apply to Caltech or MIT, those are fantastic scores you have (unless you had low scores in other subjects not listed) and with a degree from either school you open up a lot of opportunities elsewhere (whether it's grad school like you said or a career).
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook