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scientific computing master's programs

anyone here done a scientific computing master's?

Was it fun? Did you learn stuff? What do you do now?

I'm interested in doing one of these, out of professional boredom, and the fact that I like math, but am not PhD math material. (undergrad math BS, good marks, but at an undistinguished school)

Stanford seems to have one of the better looking programs in the US. So I'm applying there.

http://www-sccm.stanford.edu/wrap/program.html

I'm also looking at Oxford, but I'm not sure if they admit yanks.

http://web.comlab.ox.ac.uk/oucl/courses/grad03-04/mmsc/

Any graduates of other programs, I'd like to hear where you did it and what your opinion of the program is.

I'm in the Boston area, but would like to move somewhere else.

ktm
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

I did mine in finite element methods in Electromagnetics almost 25 years ago. It's a very specialized niche field which hurt me somewhat the one time I was looking for a job. But then that was a only few months out of the last 25 years, so all in all it's kept my career on an even keel.

old_timer
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Don't even think about specializing like that unless you have a job in mind.  Do you?

Scientific computing might get you a spot at government or defense contractors, but little else.  What did you have in mind?

Robert
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

I'm not concerned about career trajectory or what jobs are available, I've been making over 6 figures for the past 7 years. FWIW, I would most likely continue on in the entertainment industry. I have plenty of contacts here. I just want to become re-acquainted with math in an computational setting.

I'm interested in modeling biological applications and time series, interestes which I hope to combine into computational models of how the ear processes sound.

ktm
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

finance.

christopher baus (www.summitsage.com)
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

If you are interested in the auditory system, get a PhD in Neuroscience. That way you'll be able to talk to the neuroscientists with the underlying information. The computer programming you can learn on your own. There are quite a lot of researchers working on the auditory system worldwide.

You're a little late to sign up for the Society for Neuroscience meeting in New Orleans at the end of this week, but at that meeting you would find many of the researchers, and could ask them about where to go as a graduate student. If you do make it to New Orleans, the main talks and posters about the auditory system seem to be on Sunday and Monday.

Dan Brown
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

"If you are interested in the auditory system, get a PhD in Neuroscience. That way you'll be able to talk to the neuroscientists with the underlying information"

Thanks for the tip Dan, but I've talked to a number of biological researchers about this already, and they say the OPPOSITE thing you just told me.  They say there is a HUGE lack of people in biosciences with the appropriate applied math skills. Their perspective is that it is easier for an applied Math Msc to read a Shuam's Biochemistry Outline than it is for a Biochem PhD to learn how to do PDEs in C++.

At risk of sounding like an ass, I'd sort of like to steer this conversation back to the orginal question "has anyone actually done a scientific computing master's." I am a reasonably successful adult and don't really need any general career advice. but, thanks for the thought!

ktm
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

yes

Robert
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

take a masters in statistics or mathematical finance. The end result (job) is essentially "applied" programming.

Tom Vu
Wednesday, November 05, 2003

"I'm also looking at Oxford, but I'm not sure if they admit yanks"

Of course they do, as long as you can row.


Thursday, November 06, 2003

They took Bill Clinton, didn't they.

Just remember not to inhale.

Ged Byrne
Thursday, November 06, 2003

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