Only 1/3 of high school instructors teaching physics have a major in physics. There is thus a strong demand for new physics teachers in secondary education. For students who wish to pursue this career track, we recently instituted the Bachelor of Science (BS) in Physics & Astronomy Edcuation degree program. The program is designed to allow students to take many of the core physics courses while still having room to take education courses. Please contact us for more information on this exciting new program.
The BS in Physics & Astronomy Education includes a minimum of 32 credit hours in physics & astronomy courses. The student in this program must also complete the required secondary education courses and professional field experience, including PHYS-489 (Cross-listed with ED-489), The Teaching of Natural Sciences. Please see the Education program webpages and the catalog (starting on page 87).
A sample 4-year schedule (pdf) is available so you can see approximately what your course schedule would look like.
Below is a table showing all the courses offered and where they might fit into a typical schedule. Explanatory notes are given at the end.
|Course Title||Semester Suggested||Semester hours||Required/ Elective|
|ASTR-101L Astronomy Lab||1||1||Required|
|ASTR-221 Observational Astronomy (Spring, odd years) & ASTR-252 Stellar Astrophysics (Spring, even years)
PHYS-345 Experimental Physics IV (Spring)
|2, 3, 4, or 5||1 + 3||Required|
|ASTR-253 Galactic Astrophysics (Fall, even years)||4 or 6||3||Elective|
|ASTR-445 Experimental Astronomy (Senior Research in Astronomy)
PHYS-445 Experimental Physics (Senior Research in Physics)
|7 or 8||1||Required|
|PHYS-190 Topics in Physics (Freshman Seminar)||1||1||Recommended|
|PHYS-141 Physics: Mechanics and Heat (or PHYS-151)||1||3||Required|
|PHYS-141L Experimental Physics I (Laboratory)||1||1||Required|
|PHYS-142 Physics: Electricity, Magnetism and Waves (or PHYS-152)||2||3||Required|
|PHYS-142L Experimental Physics II (Laboratory)||2||1||Required|
|PHYS-151 Physics: Mechanics and Heat - Honors||1||3||(Required)|
|PHYS-152 Physics: Electricity, Magnetism and Waves - Honors||2||3||(Required)|
|PHYS-243 Physics: Atoms, Nuclei, and the Solid State||3||3||Required|
|PHYS-245 Experimental Physics III (Laboratory)||4||1||Required|
|PHYS-246 Data Reduction and Error Analysis||4||1||Required|
|PHYS-250 Analytical Mechanics||4||3||Required|
|PHYS-281 Electricity and Electronics||3||3||Elective|
|PHYS-360 Thermal Physics (Spring, odd years)||6 or 8||3||Required|
|PHYS-372 Electromagnetic Waves (Spring, odd years)||6 or 8||3||Elective|
|PHYS-381 Advanced Mechanics (Fall, even years)||5 or 7||3||Elective|
|PHYS-421 Quantum Mechanics I (Fall, odd years)||5 or 7||3||Elective|
|PHYS-422 Quantum Mechanics II (Spring, even years)||6 or 8||3||Elective|
|PHYS-430 Nuclear and Particle Physics (Spring, even years)||6 or 8||3||Elective|
|PHYS-430L Nuclear and Particle Physics (Laboratory) (Spring, even years)||6 or 8||1||Elective|
|PHYS-440 Condensed Matter Physics (Spring, odd years)||6 or 8||3||Elective|
|PHYS-490 Scientific Endeavor (Spring, odd years)||6 or 8||3||Recommended|
|PHYS-492 Research and Reading in Physics||--||1-3||Elective|
|PHYS-499 Physics Colloquium||All||0||Required|
PHYS-490 is recommended but may not be used to fulfill the 32 credits required for the major. It can be used to fulfill the Humanties Philosophy general education requirement.