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Will a masters in physics broaden or narrow job possibilities vs. ME?

  1. May 27, 2013 #1
    I recently graduated with a bachelors in Mechanical Engineering Technology and I want to pursue a masters in an actual engineering discipline (not technology) or possibly physics. I know that a large majority of physics majors go on to work as engineers but they also have other options like physics and astronomy and natural sciences. With this in mind I have been wondering if a masters in Physics would increase my possibilities more so than a Master's in Mechanical Engineering would.

    Also can Physics majors get licensed as PEs?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 27, 2013 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Welcome to PF;
    Every higher education choice from now on will narrow your job opportunities - the idea is to improve your chances in a career which calls for an advanced degree. Decide what you want to spend your life doing.

    Note: engineers can also go on to have a career in physics too ... but if the job description calls for am Mxy and you are applying with a Myz, then applicants with the Mxy will be usually be considered ahead of you.

    MSc(Physics) is more general than ME - but also in less demand.
    It used to be that a physics degree would get you in anywhere - these days there are specialized degrees for everything. OTOH: I've known people who went from MSc physics to study Law and got careers as litigators.

    Licensing is subject to jurisdiction - you should ask the licensing body.
  4. May 27, 2013 #3
    Thanks Simon, I feel I made a mistake in getting a bachelors in Mechanical engineering Technology instead of Mechanical Engineering I've heard that the MET guys hit a glass wall as compared to the ME guys. This is another reason why I am considering getting a masters in Mechanical Engineering in hopes that it will remove that glass wall.
  5. May 27, 2013 #4


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    One needs to determine if one can get into a ME masters program with a MET bachelors. The fundamentals (for instance the math) are different for these degrees. Same applies for physics.
  6. May 27, 2013 #5
    You're right, I am completely aware of that and have already been declined once but I think that I can still get accepted some how either elsewhere or by taking extra coursework and I am working on getting accepted.
  7. May 27, 2013 #6


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    Also, it is not really necessary to get a PE license to practice engineering in most industries.
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