Graduate School Preparation

A large proportion of our physics majors go on to graduate school after graduation. For your information, there is no unique standard admission process to graduate schools; the required application material, the deadline for application and the test requirements varies from school to school. However, in all cases, a good preparation in physics for graduate students includes a sound knowledge of general physics, intermediate level mechanics, electricity and magnetism, optics, statistical and thermal physics, introductory atomic physics including some principles of quantum mechanics. A corresponding mathematical background would include vector analysis, calculus, ordinary differential equations, and some knowledge of introductory complex analysis.

The American Institute of Physics has put together the Grad School Shopper, an interesting resource to gather information about the different graduate school programs.

Some of the graduate schools required scores for the general and subject (physics) test of the graduate record examination (GRE), administered by the Educational Testing Service. You can practice the physics subject test by taking the older exams.

Sample GRE exams

The learning center offers a workshop series designed to help you review for the GRE General test. The learning center provides many useful resources for successful test taking.