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To Be Or Not To Be: Physics Major

mikey23smikey23s Posts: 141Registered User Junior Member
edited May 2010 in UC Transfers
I want to declare Physics as my major. Never had the raw talent in math and physics. But I love it and I'm determined to work hard. Is that enough to succeed in this major(as in get good grades)? On the other hand is this a good major to choose in preparation for Med-school. What were your experiences? Any comments are appreciated.
Post edited by mikey23s on
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Replies to: To Be Or Not To Be: Physics Major

  • JamesGoldJamesGold Posts: 496Registered User Member
    I'm interested in an answer to this question as well.
  • J'adoubeJ'adoube Posts: 2,046Registered User Senior Member
    Do you have raw talent at something else? Just being a Physics major because you like it and it would look good on your application to med school may not be enough of a draw. Think of it this way: why would you take all these classes that you don't really like and only get a lot harder every semester/quarter? What happens if Med School doesn't happen?
  • minilemonminilemon Posts: 222Registered User Junior Member
    I think you'll have a better idea once you start taking the required classes, calc, physics..etc.
  • mikey23smikey23s Posts: 141Registered User Junior Member
    @ J'adoube: It's more than just like. I love learning things on my own in physics like String Theory and Relativity. I never thought of it as an "i wanna look good" major for med-school. I'm just wondering if it's going to be too hard with all the other requirements. or that only "geniuses" do this:the kind that never study, that have that raw talent. I would say my strengths are in math and science. But I have to work really hard to do well. Biology tends to bore me(I know this has to change). But I can't see myself majoring in anything other than in the field of physics. I just don't want to mess up.
  • Coolaid317Coolaid317 Posts: 396Registered User Member
    Majoring in physics isn't the best idea if you are planning to attend medical school, especially if you are not great at mathematics.
    Why?
    You will have a much lower chance of getting A's when you are competing with mathematical geniuses at tier 1 schools.
  • mikey23smikey23s Posts: 141Registered User Junior Member
    How much harder is physics compared to bio or chem? considering study time and competition?
  • xelinkxelink Posts: 1,124Registered User Senior Member
    Med school is basically interested in your stats.

    test scores and GPA dominate. Don't do physics unless you'll do well in it.

    also, Bio and chem will prepare you better for med school(at least I'd assume)

    FYI, many physics majors are the math majors who got bored nd thought to themselves "hell why not?" this is your competition. These are the people who laugh at what you consider hard. If you have passion, you can overcome their advantage, but that's not always enough.

    I'm in the same boat, I don't like calculus but I love economics. I want to do econ in grad school so I'm forcing math down my own throat.
  • F4LCONF4LCON Posts: 156Registered User Junior Member
    Were you able to handle the General Physics sequence (Mechanics, EM, Optics, Intro to Modern) ?
    If you thought they were difficult, majoring in Physics might not be the best idea if your ultimate goal is med-school. The upper division Physics (Quantum Theory, Particle Physics, Astrophysics, etc) are a magnitude more challenging. Furthermore, the amount of math that physics majors need is crazy, right behind the Math majors. It's definitely doable with effort, but it will be very difficult to academically succeed if Math isn't the thing for you.

    If you havn't taken the General Physics sequence, take a look at ocw.mit.edu and see what's it like.
  • mikey23smikey23s Posts: 141Registered User Junior Member
    I guess I'll do Physics major in JC and if I'm not among the top students in my math and physics classes for 2 years then I will consider switching majors. Thats my conclusion.
  • girlyshoutgirlyshout Posts: 395Registered User Member
    you don't need to wait 2 years, most likely, you will have a good idea of where you stand after 1 or 2 semesters; especially after you see what B's in math and science classes do to your overall gpa.
  • mikeimikei Posts: 516Registered User Member
    I'd say no to Physics for med school but if you forget about med school and just love Physics, then go for it. You don't need raw talent and you don't need to be a natural genius if you have a good work ethic and are passionate about the subject. :)
  • mikey23smikey23s Posts: 141Registered User Junior Member
    @mikei: Why would you say no to physics for med-school? how was physics at berkeley? what was/is your experience there? (sorry for all the questions)
  • mikey23smikey23s Posts: 141Registered User Junior Member
    @girlyshout: good point.

    i'm kind of stubborn right now. i don't want to do anything else but physics. i think i'll understand better once i start taking classes at JC. It might sink in then.
  • mikeimikei Posts: 516Registered User Member
    I only say that because Physics is notoriously difficult at UC Berkeley. I haven't began at Berkeley yet but of the couple of alumni I've spoken to they've said Berkeley's math and physics is very, very hard. If you take Physics it will be hard to have a very competitive GPA for med school. But if you LOVE Physics then go for it! If you think your work ethic is good enough, then go for it. But don't go into it with med school as the main thing on your mind, you really need to be passionate about Physics to do well in it. :)
  • mikey23smikey23s Posts: 141Registered User Junior Member
    thanks mikei im definatly going to use your advice

    i just had a friend who got a masters in bio-engineering at ucsd and he is planning to apply to med-school. is this comparable to getting a degree in physics and then applying to med-school.(considering degree of difficulty.) or is physics still tougher?
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