Department of Physics
McPheeters-Dennis Hall, Room 102
(404) 880-8797


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M.S. Degree Program

The Department of Physics offers a Master of Science degree which allows students to pursue either a non-terminal program focused on preparation for doctoral candidacy at major universities or a terminal degree program emphasizing computational/applied physics. Entering students have the opportunity to make up for any lack of adequate undergraduate preparation by enrolling in appropriate upper-level undergraduate courses offered by the Department.

Admission Requirements

In addition to general requirements of the School of Arts and Sciences, candidates must fulfill the following prerequisites:

  • B.A. or B.S. degree, with a major in one of the physical sciences from an accredited institution.
  • An overall academic grade point average of "B" or better.
  • Completion at the undergraduate level of the following courses: General Physics, Mechanics, Electricity and Magnetism, Optics, Modern Physics/Quantum Mechanics, Calculus (one year), and Differential Equations.

Programs of Study

The Department offers two distinct options leading to the Master of Science (M.S.) degree: One in pure physics and one in applied physics. The M.S. degree program in pure physics provides the basic course work and research skills necessary for persons who might pursue a Ph.D. degree in physics. The M.S. degree program in applied physics equips individuals with tools and techniques necessary for solving applied physical problems arising in business, government and industry.

Each option requires a minimum of twenty-one (21) hours of basic core courses in physics, six (6) hours of thesis research or research projects, and three (3) or six (6) hours of approved electives depending on thesis or non-thesis options.

The electives are approved by the chairperson of the Department. Certain courses offered by the Departments of Chemistry, Computer Science, and Mathematical Sciences may satisfy the elective requirement.

Degree Requirements

Master of Science (Thesis)
In addition to the general requirements specified by the School of Arts and Sciences and the University, students will be required to fulfill the following:

  • Completion of at least twenty-one (21) hours of graduate-level coursework in physics courses numbered 500 and above. Six (6) hours of credit in research courses.
  • Completion of a thesis and a final oral examination, focusing upon thesis contents.
  • Completion of an approved three (3) hours elective course.

Master of Science (Non-Thesis)
In addition to the general requirements specified by the School of Arts and Sciences and the University, students will be required to fulfill the following:

  • Completion of at least twenty-one (21) hours of graduate-level coursework in physics courses numbered 500 and above. Six (6) hours of credit in research courses.
  • Completion of two (2) approved six (6) hours of elective courses.
  • Completion of an exit exam.

The basic core courses for the Master of Science in physics consist of the following: PHY 501, 503, 515-516, 520, 531-532, 601-602, 603-604. Students are advised to take at least one (1) course in computer science.



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