Degrees & Requirements

Two tracks of study are offered in the Physics Department in which either the B.A. or B.S. degree may be earned.

The B.S. program teaches basic physics to prepare you for graduate school or engineering school, offering mathematics and research experiences integrated with physics concepts.

The B.A. degree program provides background in basic physics, emphasizing laboratory skills and knowledge that you will need in industrial or government employment, providing knowledge of the computer, and stressing mathematical skills.

Either a B.A. or B.S. degree may be earned in physics with support work in education to meet Virginia requirements for licensure to teach physics, and under certain circumstance, other related subjects.

Either a B.A. or B.S. degree may be earned in physics with support work in the sciences, pre-professional, or business programs. This concentration provides career-oriented skills based on the offerings of other departments. 

B.S. in Physics

  • General Physics I & II
  • Modern Physics
  • Intermediate Mechanics
  • Electricity & Magnetism
  • Quantum Mechanics
  • Three additional upper division physics courses
  • Calculus sequence & support courses in chemistry
  • Internship, or senior research project, or satisfactory performance on a comprehensive examination

B.A. in Physics

  • General Physics I & II
  • Modern Physics
  • Five additional physics courses
  • Calculus sequence
  • Internship, or senior research project, or independent study

Page from Workshop Physics manual

An internship is required as part of the B.S. degree, and students are encouraged to apply to summer research programs throughout the country.

A background in mathematics and basic computer skills is helpful. Mathematics and chemistry combine well with physics as a second major or a minor concentration.