Mentoring Scenario 3 Discussion 1


The most likely reason that you are failing the qualification exam is your background in undergraduate physics. Some students, as undergraduates, do not acquire the physics framework that would support graduate work in physics. They could have been simply very good at passing exams but did not assimilate the material, or their exposure to advanced undergraduate physics might have been deficient. 

All possible remedies start with a discussion with the graduate program head. Once you have admitted your problems, the possible remedies might include grading in the advanced undergrad physics courses, or simply sitting in on undergrad courses for no credit.

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