In this post, we’ll discover if it is possible to become an engineer with a physics degree and how to do that.
Can you become an engineer with a physics degree?
Physics is a great major that allows you to switch easily to almost any engineering career. It is easier to become an engineer with a Physics degree and work in engineering Industries than doing the contrast. but you have to take some additional Applied Physics courses like design, and programming and get some practical skills dealing with machines and systems.
Working with a Physics degree as an engineer differs for each engineering major you want to specialize in. For instance, to work as a software engineer with a Physics degree you will not face a lot of problems like working as a mechanical engineer or a civil engineer with a Physics degree but in both cases is it still possible.
For example, it just requires a lot of effort and energy to switch from physics to mechanical engineering than doing with software engineers.
But we would be talking in detail about how much it takes to work with a Physics degree in the most famous engineering Majors like:
1 – working with a physics degree as a mechanical engineer
To work with a Physics degree as a mechanical engineer you have two choices, the first choice is to apply to mechanical engineering jobs, especially in research and product development. They require a lot of physics engineering majors to work with the labs.
The second option is to continue taking a master’s in mechanical engineering picking a specialty like Manufacturing or system engineering. But in this case, you would be required to take some undergrad courses like computer-aided design CAD and have some internships to get used to machines and work a little bit with your hands.
We wrote out a complete guide article about how to switch from physics to mechanical engineering. It will be useful if you are interested in doing this step.
2 – working with a physics degree in aerospace engineering
Working in aerospace engineering with a Physics degree is similar to mechanical engineering prerequisites. To Find a job you would likely need to take some undergrad courses related to design like computer-aided design CAD in addition to taking some internships to have experience working with your hands.
If you show interest and passion to learn this domain, many employers will accept you to work in aerospace engineering with a physics background, but you have to accept the huge pay cut, especially in your first years until you grasp the necessary knowledge and experience.
working directly without having any experience and background in aerospace engineering by only having a Physics degree is very tough. You have to take a little preparation. The best one is having internships and networking with people. You could also opt for an aerospace engineering master’s if you are interested in studying a little bit more.
But you have to understand that your physics background will help you a lot in solving Aerospace engineering problems. Aerospace engineering is heavily related to physics.
3 – working with a physics degree in software engineering
If you want to make a transition from a Physics degree to software engineering it is the easiest step to make it is not difficult as mechanical or electrical engineering. You could easily find a job with a Physics degree as a software engineer.
You have many options to work in the software engineering industry. Firstly, you could take a master’s in software engineering but in this case, you have to take some programming and computer science undergrad topics before you apply to this program.
The second option is to self-tough software engineering by taking online courses, for instance, if you want to become a software developer there are many online courses like Udemy Coursera or Skillshare you could take and start learning from scratch.
The third option is to enroll in some private programs or boot camps that teach you software engineering in record time. instead of spending two years taking a master’s you could only learn software engineering in just six months or less by taking an accelerated program where you’ll be surrounded by professionals in the industry.
We have a complete article that teaches you how to make a transition from physics to software engineering. You will find it in this ad link.
4 – working as a civil engineer with a physics degree
Civil engineering is one of the most difficult and not flexible majors to work on, civil engineering is a type of job that requires credentials and authority to work in its different sectors.
You would have 2 options in this case:
The first one is to go back to school and take some civil engineering courses. You will not be required to take a complete civil engineering program because Physicists and civil engineers study a lot of similar topics, especially in math like calculus and differential equations.
The second option is to take an engineering physics course, this course will allow you to double major in physics and any engineering field you choose. In this case, you would be able to get a double major in physics plus civil engineering.
5 – working as a nuclear engineer with a physics degree
Having a background in physics would be so useful to study or become a nuclear engineer. You would find in this link a complete article that explains to you how to become a nuclear engineer with a Physics degree.
Becoming an engineer with a Physics degree is possible but it differentiates between each engineering domain, it is easier as we’ve seen with software engineering but it is more difficult to achieve with civil engineering. But if you have the determination and will you will arrive at your destination.