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Engineering Physics/Applied Physics


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What to Expect

As an engineering physics student, you'll spend your days in classes and labs. To work on group projects, you'll need to apply your social skills. Evenings and weekends will find you studying, working in the computer labs or doing research.

Expect to spend two to four hours a day on homework.

Sound grueling? It can be. But the payoff will be a job in the computer, electronics or engineering industries, often working on leading-edge technology. And because your fellow students will be working just as hard as you are, you'll have the opportunity to make friends.

Katie Krause was drawn to engineering physics because of her interest in physics, computer science and math. "We [took] courses in optics, solid state, modern physics, electronics, design methods, laboratory techniques, mathematics and computer science."

She liked the small class sizes. "Our program is small enough that we [got] to know everyone pretty well," she says.

Matthew Anderson took the program at Salisbury State University. He liked the advanced technology courses, which gave him the chance to "see where things can immediately be applied."

Anderson says he spent a lot of time in class, but he also spent a fair amount of time in study groups with his fellow students.

How to Prepare

"High school students entering the program should be aware of how heavy the course load is," says Krause, who was president of her school's engineering physics society. "You have to be willing to study hard. You also have to be prepared for a lot of group work."

"I pretty much knew what I was in for," says Anderson. "The most difficult thing is to prepare for the amount of work that is required outside of the classroom."

Krause encourages students to take part in science fairs, computer programming courses and university open houses.

"The best preparation is learning good study habits and study skills," says Anderson.


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