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Department of Physics

Major Requirements

undergraduate program

Physics B.S. majors are required to complete coursework in physics as well as co-requisite coursework in mathematics and an additional approved science.

Among these courses, the following ten are required:

Required Courses
PHYS2200 (or PHYS2100*) & PHYS2050 Introductory Physics I with Lab PHYS2201 (or PHYS2101*) & PHYS2051 Introductory Physics II with Lab
PHYS3100 Wave and Vibrations with Lab PHYS3300 Intro to Modern Physics
PHYS4100 Mechanics
PHYS4200 Electricity and Magnetism
PHYS4400 Quantum Physics I
PHYS4401 Quantum Physics II
PHYS3510 Contemporary Electronics Lab
PHYS4600 Statistical Mechanics & Thermodynamics

*Physics majors are strongly recommended to take the PHYS2200-2201 sequence. PHYS2100-2101 is typically for Biology, Pre-med, and students fulfilling science requirements.


Choose one of the following:

PHYS4350 Experiments in Physics
PHYS4300 Computing in Physics
PHYS4951 Senior Thesis*
Honors Program Thesis**

*Senior Thesis is recommended for students planning graduate work in Physics.
** For students in A&S Honors program doing a Physics Thesis.


Choose at least two elective courses (course offerings vary from year to year):

Elective Courses
PHYS4505 Nuclei and Particles
PHYS4545 Condensed Matter Physics
PH440 Applied Fluid Mechanics
PHYS4555 Optics
PH480 Intro. to Mathematical Physics
PH510 Stellar Astrophysics
PH515 Semiconductor Devices and Lasers
PH525 Plasma Physics
PHYS4565 Cosmology and Astrophysics
PH545 Intro. Chaos and Nonlinear Dynamics
PHYS4575 Physics of Nanomaterials


The following mathematics courses are required:

Mathematics Courses
MATH1102 Calculus I
MATH3305 Advanced Calculus*
MATH1103 Calculus II or MATH1105 Calculus II AP
MATH2202 Multivariable Calculus

*Students entering with Math AP Placement are advised to substitute MATH3305 with both Linear Algebra (MATH2210) and Differential Equations (MATH4410)

The final requirement is two approved courses in a science other than physics, normally CHEM1109-1110 General Chemistry along with the associated laboratories.


Choose two additional science courses with lab:

Science Courses with Lab
CHEM1109 & 1111 General Chemistry I with Lab
CHEM1110 & 1112 General Chemistry II with Lab
Other Approved Science I with Lab
Other Approved Science II with Lab