Department of Physics & Earth Science
The Department of Physics and Earth Science offers a major program in physics. This program leads to the Bachelor of Arts or the Bachelor of Science degree. The physics program has three options: Professional Physics, General Physics, and General Science. The department offers minor programs in physics and geology, supporting coursework for other major and preprofessional programs, and coursework applicable to the physical science requirements in the general studies component in all programs. The department also provides the subject field preparation in physics and in areas of general science for secondary school teachers.
The Professional Physics option of the physics major is designed especially for students who anticipate pursuing further studies in physics beyond the bachelor's degree. It is a rigorous program that aims at preparing the student to meet the challenges of graduate studies in physics.
The General Physics option of the physics major is designed for students who anticipate seeking employment after receiving the bachelor's degree or who intend to pursue graduate studies in a field other than physics. This option provides a more flexible program, which may be tailored to better suit the particular needs and goals of individual students.
The General Science option of the Physics major is primarily designed for students who wish to teach at the secondary level. The curriculum provides the student with courses in physics, geology, biology, and chemistry, and prepares the graduate who completes all teacher certification requirements to teach courses from each field at the secondary level.
In selecting electives in the physics major, the student should consult with the chair of the department for advisement. The required Directed Research project (PH495) will be chosen so as to complement the student's program and goals.
Students with a major concentration in professional physics or general physics, and those who choose physics as a teaching field for education certification, are required to take exit examinations for graduation.
For further information about the department, please visit us in 207 Floyd Hall or call us at 256.765.4334.