Academic Catalog

Physics (M.A.)

For some students, the master’s degree will be used as part of a continuing Ph.D. program; for others, it will be a terminal degree leading to employment in government laboratories, industrial programs, hospitals, teaching positions, and other occupations. The Master of Arts with a major in Physics is offered under Plan B, as described on the next tab.

Admission Requirements

Admission to this program is contingent upon admission to the Graduate School. In addition, applicants must satisfy the following criteria.

Prerequisite Preparation

Prerequisite preparation should include:

A minimum of general college physics with laboratory equivalent to:
University Physics for Scientists I
University Physics for Scientists II
Introductory Modern Physics
Fifteen credits in intermediate physics courses, for example, those equivalent to the following:
Methods of Theoretical Physics I
Classical Mechanics I
Classical Mechanics II
Quantum Physics I
Quantum Physics II
Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics
Electromagnetic Fields I
Electromagnetic Fields II
Modern Physics Laboratory
Mathematics equivalent to mathematics prerequisites required in those physics courses
A minimum of general college chemistry with laboratory equivalent to:
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry I Laboratory

The Graduate Record Examination, both the General section and the Physics subject test, is strongly recommended as a counseling aid in preparing the student’s plan of study.


Program Requirements

The Master of Arts degree is offered by this Department only under the following option:

Plan B: Twenty-nine credits in course work plus a three-credit essay.

  1. The following physics courses or their equivalents must be completed or must have been completed previously at the undergraduate level.
    PHY 5100Methods of Theoretical Physics I3
    PHY 5210Classical Mechanics II3
    PHY 6400Quantum Physics I4
    PHY 6410Quantum Physics II3
    PHY 6500Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics4
    PHY 6600Electromagnetic Fields I4
    PHY 6610Electromagnetic Fields II3
  2. Mathematics equivalent to mathematics prerequisites required for the course work listed above.
  3. At least nine credits of coursework in physics at the 7000-level or above (exclusive of PHY 7990, PHY 7996, PHY 7999, PHY 8995, PHY 8999).
  4. PHY 7999 Master's Essay Direction. 
  5. A departmental final oral examination is required of all candidates.
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