2014-2015 Catalog 
    Jul 20, 2024  
2014-2015 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Physics, BS

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Learning Outcomes

  • Students will possess the fundamental physics knowledge that is necessary for admission into a graduate program in physics or related technical fields, such as education, industry, research, and military.
  • Students will be able to apply the fundamental ideas and methods of physics and be able to analyze problems using these skills.
  • Students will be able to prepare and present several research topics and defend them before peers and faculty.

Degree Options

The Bachelor of Science program in physics is designed to help students attain their professional goals in physics. Four options within the Bachelor of Science program enable students to achieve their particular educational objectives. These options are:  

  • Traditional Physics
  • Solid State Physics
  • Energy Science
  • Secondary Teaching

Courses in each option are chosen to teach the fundamental concepts on which the field is based. Laboratories are designed to give students practical hands-on experience. Advanced laboratories provide opportunities to study and use state-of-the-art technology in the student’s area of interest. The solid state laboratory required in the solid state option is designed to teach the fundamentals of materials technology.

General Requirements

  • 33 credit hours in Physics Core requirements
  • 37 credit hours in other Core areas
  • 18 credit hours in Physics Option area
  • a maximum of 54 credits in PES will apply toward the degree
  • a grade of C or better in every physics course that is applied toward the major
  • students must meet the 9 hour LAS general education area requirements from both humanities and social science

Required Core Courses for Traditional Physics, Solid State Physics, and Energy Science

(Secondary Education Physics majors, skip down to Secondary Education Teaching section.)

Required Courses within the Chosen Option

In addition to the above core requirements, students will complete required courses for one of three options: Traditional Physics, Solid State Physics, or Energy Science.

Traditional Physics Option

This program is designed for students intending to pursue graduate studies in physics or planning to obtain an industrial position with a traditional physics degree. This option requires a minimum of 18 credit hours of courses in addition to the cores.


The traditional physics option also requires a minimum of 3 upper-division hours of mathematics in addition to MATH 3400.


*Variable credit courses with a maximum of 6 hours allowed to count toward degree.

Other elective courses may be substituted with the written approval of the department chair.

Solid State Physics Option

This option is designed for students presently employed by or intending employment in the semiconductor industry. It will provide theoretical foundations and practical experience in solid state physics.

This option requires a minimum of 20 credit hours of courses in addition to the core.

Energy Science Option

This option will prepare graduates for energy-related careers in industry and government and will provide the student with a strong background in the technical, economic, and instrumentation aspects of all energy resources. This option requires a minimum of 19 hours of courses in addition to the core.

Secondary Education Teaching Program

The Bachelor of Science in Physics with a secondary education option is designed for students wishing to be high school physics teachers. It requires a minimum of 40 credit hours (24 upper division) in physics. No more than 40 hours in physics may be counted toward the credit hours required for graduation. The following courses or their equivalents are required.

General Education Requirements

Students are required as part of their general education requirements to complete courses in Oral Communication, Cultural Diversity, and Global Awareness. The courses which have been approved as satisfying those three Gen Ed requirements are identified in the LAS section of the schedule and this catalog. Choose from among these identified courses those courses that are already required for this Physics degree.

Humanities Area Requirement (9 credit hours)

Natural Science Area Requirement (10 Credit Hours)

Social Science Area Requirement (9 credit hours)

Reasoning Skills Requirement (4 credit hours)

Note: MATH 1350 is part of the Other Requirements for Secondary Science Certification, and UTLS 3040 is a required Education course.

Other Requirements for Secondary Science Certification (24 credit hours)

 All other requirements must be completed in addition to the required major courses.

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