This week’s career memes take a poke at physicists, the brains behind the study of the laws and properties that govern space, time, matter and energy.
Physicists usually specialise in a sub-category of physics, such as astrophysics, nuclear physics, molecular physics, or medical physics, because the subject is so vast.
Colleges, universities, government departments, and R&D companies will employ physicists, who will possess at least a master’s degree, if not a PhD. Physicists may spend much of their time analysing data, developing reports, and planning experiments, and their work environment can consist of offices, labs and even nuclear reactors (depending on their area of speciality). Research and development work is a key aspect of most physicists’ jobs.
A physicist should have strong analytical, numerical, reasoning, communication and problem-solving skills, along with computer skills to operate specific software programs.
The UCD School of Physics reports that physics graduates can expect to earn an average annual salary of €54,000, according to a survey of UK physics graduates conducted by the Institute of Physics.