Admiralrewd wrote:So I am currently a PhD Astro student, at a top tier school. I enjoyed it for a while, but recently I have had some misgivings about moving into academia. After talking to my advisor, as well as a few fellow students, friends, and professors, I don't think it is worth finishing my degree, especially since I am not working in instrumentation or some field which will get me a significantly better job than just my undergraduate physics/math degree.
However, after one of my professors suggested that I might do well in applied physics, since I had a love for physics as well as astronomy, and since "applied physics will almost always lead to a real job and almost never to academia." I am only considering this, but I wanted to get advice on the subject from as many sources as possible before making any decisions.
What is an applied physics program like? Similar to normal physics?
I assume within applied physics there are lots of fields, what are some of the major ones? C-M I assume, what else?
How hard is it to get into a good applied physics school?
What kind of jobs does it lead to?
What are the top schools?
Any good sources of general information, since I am just learning now.
And any useful information anyone can offer.
Thanks in advance.
zxcv wrote:Berkeley has an applied physics program?
Maybe you were suggesting Stanford...
I suppose you are referring to the Applied Science & Technology program? From the few folks I've met here doing it and what I've it, it seems like it has the advantages of potentially being an easier way to get into Berkeley and also having far fewer administrative hurdles like required courses. On the downside, funding may be more difficult. And it may not have quite the prestige of completing a "physics" degree, although that could be just my resentment coming out... no 14 cumulative hours of prelim exams for AST students.grae313 wrote:Oh, yes, I forgot about Stanford (and I almost went to their applied physics phd program... yeesh!) but I did mean Berkeley. It's really hard to find online and and it's an extremely small department and it's called by a funky name but Berkeley has what is essentially an applied physics program.
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