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The Department of Physics offers training in physics leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy.

The B.A. curriculum provides the student with a firm foundation in physics but allows great flexibility in the choice of a large number of elective courses. Thus, the person with a B.A. in physics will not have a full complement of undergraduate physics courses but will be able to acquire an in-depth knowledge of at least one other major academic area of his or her choice. A B.A. in physics provides excellent preparation for a career in physics teaching.

The B.S. curriculum is designed primarily for students who intend to pursue graduate work in physics or other highly technical fields or for those who intend to go directly into industrial positions as professional physicists.

The physics curriculum provides classroom and research experience that prepares a graduate student for a career of either research and teaching at a university, or research and development at an industrial or government laboratory. As part of the training of the graduate student pursuing the M.S. or Ph.D. in physics, the Department of Physics recommends that all students server as teaching assistants for at least two semesters.

The current research areas of the department faculty include experimental and theoretical research in atomic, nuclear and low temperature/solid state physics. Other research areas within the department include the theory of elementary particle interactions, atmospheric physics, quantum optics and experimental high energy physics. Research laboratories supporting experimental programs are well-equipped with modern research apparatus.