Hello, I hope you've had a pleasant, and not-too-chaotic summer.
I am emailing you today to request permission to enroll in the following courses:
1 credit PHY 496-01 - Independent research on chaotic systems utilizing ideas in "Constructor theory" and "Information theory".
I believe this would give me an opportunity to have a sort of "theorist version of Advanced Lab" to satisfy my need for "Additional Physics Lab Courses" in Degree Works. Additionally, it should yield me with some research to present when applying to graduate programs since the research offered at UNCG to physics undergraduates is primarily experimentally-oriented whereas I am more interested in pursuing theoretical physics.
3 credits in PHY 420 - The "Selected Topic" would be the study of "Information theory" and "Constructor theory".
I believe this could provide a theory-based alternative to the only other course choices that are currently available: "Biophysics" (which has not been offered for some time) and "Electronics". This would allow me to fulfill my third class needed under the "Additional Courses" requirement in Degree Works.
Going hand-in-hand with the 1 credit PHY 496, this would give me a chance to interact with the topic I would like to pursue in graduate school: "Information theory". Our school does not have a course on the subject, and I believe that tackling physics from an informatics standpoint may prove helpful in potentially overcoming the "writer's block" that has existed in theoretical physics since the Standard Model and QED were formulated. Using Claude Shannon's own work and other works in the field, I am interested in learning about the concepts that underly what we mean when we use the word "information", including the relations between information in systems and symmetries (or lack thereof), and the underlying principles of Thermodynamics.
I would appreciate it if you would consider granting me permissions for these courses as I believe they will prepare me for a more independent and dynamic graduate student experience. Additionally, it would bolster my applications, and, most importantly, let me dip my toes into the subjects that I have been passionately, perhaps even a bit obsessively, curious about since my high school years.
Thank you, and enjoy the eclipse!