# Is there a theoretical physics masters that accepts mathematics graduates?

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I plan to graduate with an honours (four year) degree in philosophy and a general (three year) degree in mathematics. Are there any physics graduate programs that might admit me if I were to apply?

For context: My plan-A is to work in academic philosophy. A physics education might not appear on the resume of most philosophy professors, but I suspect that knowing about physics could improve a philosopher's thinking about a number of questions. Accordingly, it seems worthwhile to study physics during either, a one or two year detour, several years of concurrent distance education, or the summer terms of my philosophy education. Self-study is an option; however I'd prefer to earn a credential in order to improve my future applications to graduate schools and to employers.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Hal
In principle, yes, if you focus on applied mathematics and take all the physics-oriented courses offered by the maths department.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Hunter
This question appears to be off-topic because it is about academic careers rather than physics.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Danu
@Danu I considered asking the question in academia.se; however I doubted that there are enough people there who know about physics educations specifically; whereas, I suspect that most people here study, or have studied, physics at a university.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Hal
@Hunter I had thought that pure math paired better with theoretical physics (e.g. Einstein and tensors), and that applied math paired better with experimental physics. Is that not the case?

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Hal
@Hunter: my impression is that the kind of physics courses offered by applied math departments are not the kind somebody would want to tai if they were planning on going into philosophy with an emphasis on physics.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Peter Shor
@PeterShor I'm not sure, maybe you are right. But the original question has been edited since I commented on it, so I wasn't aware that the OP wanted to go into philosophy.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Hunter
@Hal : It England most theoretical physics is thought by the Department of Maths. See for example Cambridge, Durham and Edinbrugh. In fact Cambridge tend not to accept students with a physics undergraduate degree for Theoretical Physics further study.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Flint72
@Flint72: I'm not sure you should generalize to "in England, most ..." from the universities of Cambridge, Durham, and Edinburgh. Is this even true at Oxford?

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Peter Shor
@PeterShor : Oxford have a Maths Physics group in the School of Maths, which does String Theory/ Twistor Theory and some other stuff, and three Theoretical Physics groups in the School of Physics which do Condensed Matter Theory, Particle Theory and Astro-Theory. Firstly, I was more trying to tell the question poser that he should not worry about getting from Maths into Theoretical Physics. Secondly, I assumed he wanted the more philosophical stuff....

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Flint72
... and finally, by "most of England", I ment the emphisis to be on the "England", because it tends to be different in the US, Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland, for example. I don't know where the question poser was from, but if he was from one of these places and unfimiliar with the different system that tends to be used in England it may have been what prompted him to have to pose such a question in the first place. Either way, I was simply trying to reassure the question poser.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Flint72
@Hal : In fact, now that PeterShor mentions it, I can't believe that I forgot, Oxford even have a Master in Physics and Philosopy, in the department of Philosopy. I have a good friend, with an Udergraduate in Pure Maths and a Master in Maths-Physics whos going to start it next year, so I can't believe I didn't think of it straight away. Maybe this would be something like what you're looking for. There is a Philosopy of Maths courses within that degree too.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Flint72
@Flint72 Thank you for suggesting that. I had read about the program. It seemed that the program teaches philosophy to physics graduates, not vice versa. However, if the department values a combined physics-philosophy education, then perhaps it has created opportunities for physics-ignorant students to learn about the subject. I'll inquire about it. That said, I expect it will serve your friend well. Oxford is the school for philosophy. According to their website,most of their graduates proceed to academic careers, and about a quarter of them begin their careers as tenure tracked professors.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Hal
@Flint72 I just clicked on the link to the Oxford Maths-Physics group. It seems they offer a 1 year masters in theoretical/mathematical physics for students who have completed three years of mathematics education: www-thphys.physics.ox.ac.uk/MMathPhys/MMathPhysweb/index.html Thank you for that suggestion.

This post imported from StackExchange Physics at 2014-06-13 12:30 (UCT), posted by SE-user Hal

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