irockhard wrote:If I have to choose between this thesis class or a grad course, which one will benefit me more?
grae313 wrote:I think it is highly unlikely that doing a thesis will effect your admissions outcomes. The important thing is that you do research, and publishing results is way, way more important that an undergrad thesis. If you are doing research and have the chance to publish, do that and take a grad class. Doing well in a grad class looks great on an application and gives you a head start in grad school. It can impress your letter writers, too. However, if you are already doing research with a publication potentially in the works, then a thesis won't really require much extra effort so you might consider doing both.
I'm saying the opposite of cato88 because I think he was assuming that you wouldn't do any research unless you were writing a thesis. I'm assuming you are already doing research.
Research >> grad courses >> undergrad thesis.
they are pretty much the same thing. I think more research is better than grad courses. Instead of taking grad courses use the time to work on your research (finish your paper and present it then present it again ) and when presenting get to know professors at schools youre interested in. The extra time gained by using the thesis units and time presenting/networking and devote more time to your research >> grad courses. Essentially if youre taking grad courses realize they dont matter at all for grad admissions (ie. you are taking them for your own pleasure) since they really never more than a passing thought for admission committees like you being treasurer of SPS but getting to know the professors at APS meets >>>>>>>>>> grad courses.
grae313 wrote:I think you are misunderstanding what the nature of a thesis course as part of an undergraduate degree is about. It is for student who are already doing research--there is no research that you do as part of the course credit--it's only a vehicle for students who have already done or are in the midst of doing research to submit a thesis and get credit for it. You write a thesis, submit it to your adviser/department chair or whatever, and it then goes down in the records that you wrote a senior thesis. It does not entail presenting at meetings, meeting people from outside the school, or anything like that. It doesn't entail any more research. It sounds like he's doing research, may be publishing, may be going to conferences and meeting people and presenting, all independent of whether he submits a thesis to his university for credit. And I disagree, taking grad classes is not at all comparable to being a club president. First of all, even if the committee didn't care about grad classes, you are still going to benefit hugely in your grad school career from having been exposed to some of the material, or you may not even have to retake the class. Second, if you do well, you impress your instructor greatly and demonstrate that you are capable of besting people that are older and more experienced then you and that you are capable of excelling in high level physics.
The only thing he would gain by writing a thesis is having it say on his transcript that he wrote a thesis. Or sometimes, like at my school, you can graduate with the words "with honors" printed on your degree if you get a certain gpa and submit a thesis.
grae313 wrote:It does not entail presenting at meetings, meeting people from outside the school, or anything like that. It doesn't entail any more research.
grae313 wrote: Second, if you do well, you impress your instructor greatly and demonstrate that you are capable of besting people that are older and more experienced then you and that you are capable of excelling in high level physics.
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