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. The courses are well suited to graduate students in astronomy, astrophysics, chemistry, mathematics, geosciences or engineering, as well as those seeking a graduate degree in physics.
The faculty members of the department carry out theoretical and experimental research in the following areas: atomic/molecular, high-energy, low-temperature/condensed matter, materials, computational physics, nuclear physics, astronomy, cosmology and quantum optics. Research laboratories supporting the experimental programs are well-equipped with modern research apparatus. Special support facilities include an astronomical instrumentation laboratory, access to high-performance computing, a variable-energy cyclotron, as well as many other shared campus facilities.