Sample Schedules

BA in Physics (Graduate Option)

Freshman Year

  • PY 251, 252. (PY 211 is a permissible alternative to PY 251, and PY 212 is a permissable alternative to PY 252.)
  • MA 123, 124 or—with prior credit for MA 123—MA 124, 225. (Well-prepared students may substitute MA 127 or 129 for MA 123, 124 with consent of instructor.)
  • Four course selections remain open for CAS requirements and electives.

Sophomore Year

  • PY 351 (Fall; formerly PY 354). PY 313 is a permissible alternative.
  • PY 352 (Spring). This course is recommended but not required.
  • PY 355 (Spring)
  • MA 225 or MA elective (Fall)
  • Math elective (either semester, or during junior or senior year)
  • Three to six course selections remain open for CAS requirements and electives.

Junior Year

  • PY 405, 406
  • PY 408 (Fall)
  • PY 451 (Spring)
  • Math elective (either semester, or during sophomore or senior year)
  • Three or four course selections remain open for CAS requirements and electives.

Senior Year

  • PY 410 (Spring)
  • PY 452 (Fall)
  • PY 581 (Fall)
  • Physics elective (either semester)
  • Math elective (either semester, or during sophomore or junior year)
  • Four or five course selections remain open for CAS requirements and electives.

Transfer students or students deciding to become physics concentrators after the first semester may substitute PY 211, 212, and 313, or their equivalents, for the introductory courses PY 251, 252, and 351 respectively. The same option is available for students whose academic experience has not prepared them for PY 251, 252. However, it is strongly recommended that interested students join the mainstream physics program as early as possible in their undergraduate careers. In that case, substitution of PY 252 for PY 212 and PY 351 for PY 313 is encouraged.

Well-prepared students may be able to take advanced undergraduate courses earlier than the above schedules indicate. They should consult with their advisors and with the course instructors in pursuing this possibility. Students wishing a slower pace may postpone some of the 400-level classes to their senior year. Again, close consultation with a student’s physics advisor is required.

Upper-level students are strongly encouraged to become involved with a research group and gain exposure to ongoing projects. This experience provides students with an appreciation for the difference between coursework and open-ended research. It offers essential practical training for students who wish to pursue technical careers after obtaining their undergraduate degree and broadens the background of those planning graduate study in physics. Students are also encouraged to enroll in the Undergraduate Seminar course, PY 482. This 2-credit seminar examines research topics of current interest in depth. The subject of the course changes from semester to semester.