Oct 01, 2022
Requirements for the Physics Major
To receive the B.S. in Physics, students must adhere to General Education and School of Natural Sciences Requirements . The Physics program consists of 79-89 units with a minimum of 23 courses (11 lower division and 12 upper division) designed to give all students a common foundation of core knowledge specific to the discipline, plus breadth in an application area.
Lower Division Major Requirements [41-44 Units]
Chemistry Requirement [4 units]
Complete the following course:
Computer Science Requirement [2 units]
Complete one of the following courses:
Mathematics Requirement [20 units]
Complete the following five mathematics courses:
Physics Requirement [12 units]
Complete the following three lower division physics courses. Note that registration is PHYS 008 and PHYS 009 also requires registration in a corresponding Lab and Discussion.
Lower-Division Natural Sciences or Engineering Course Requirement [3-4 units]
Complete one breadth science or engineering elective (any School of Natural Sciences or School of Engineering course, excluding physics or math).
Upper Division Core Physics Courses [28 Units]
Complete all of the following courses:
Senior Thesis Requirement [4-5 Units]
All students are required to complete a senior thesis usually based on independent research performed under the tutelage of a faculty advisor. Typically, this research is the culmination of a student’s emphasis track (see below). The thesis advisor may be a faculty member in either physics or another discipline, allowing for the possibility of cross-disciplinary research projects. To complete the thesis, a student must take (at least) 2 units of PHYS 195 and 2 units of PHYS 196 , typically in the fall and spring, respectively, of the senior year. Note that PHYS 196 can only be taken once, and PHYS 195 can be repeated.
Alternatively, students with an industry focused career in mind may choose to complete this requirement with the Engineering Capstone Design Courses where the student will work in multidisciplinary teams on completing design projects presented by industrial partners.
Requirements for Mathematical and Computational Physics Emphasis [16-17 Units]
Mathematical and Computational Physics focuses on the development of mathematical methods and computational techniques to model and analyze physical systems. The skills developed with this emphasis can be applied across a wide variety physics domains and to a range of technical professions beyond physics ranging from mathematics to engineering to finance.
Required Mathematical and Computational Physics Courses [12-13 units]
Additional Elective Course [4 units]
Complete at least one additional course from this list. Other courses may be substituted with assigned faculty advisor approval.
To be admitted to the Physics major transfer students must meet the following requirements:
Applicants will, at the time of admission have completed at minimum each of the following courses (or their equivalent) with a “C-” or better: