Theoretical physics involves discovering the laws by which everything works. Mathematical models are utilized to explain the natural world. Although not often considered a practical science, theoretical physicists spend time deliberating over difficult questions such as the origin of the universe.
The study of theoretical physics primarily involves experimenting by using non-traditional or empirical testing of theories. Well known theories established through theoretical physics include Einstein’s theory of relativity and string theory. These theories are now applied and used in other scientific fields.
Astronomy and quantum physics are typical career paths for theoretical physicists. Rather than performing typical science experiments, these scientists utilize thought experiments and extensive mathematical calculations to explore their field. They spend significant time discussing and debating, trading ideas and theories, offering criticism and exploring new ideas.
Theoretical physicists primarily work with mathematical concepts. Their work requires an extensive understanding of mathematics and how it applies to all things in the universe. These scientists spend time quietly pondering unsolved scientific mysteries requiring that they be highly analytical and detail oriented. They must copiously document their ideas and have the ability to communicate those ideas to colleagues.