Physics

Department Chairperson: David Kanis

Faculty:Justin Akujieze, Sam Bowen (Emeritus), Kim Coble, Edmundo Garcia, Austin Harton, Mel Sabella, Shuming Zheng

The Department of Chemistry and Physics offers a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics. The general goal of the Physics program is to prepare students for scientific careers in industry, government, and education, as well as for advanced study in physics or other disciplines, such as engineering, architecture, medicine, material science, or pharmacy. Each of the Options in the Physics program provides:

  1. A broad foundation in the theory, principles, and history of physics.
  2. Skills in analytical reasoning and problem solving.
  3. Necessary laboratory, safety, and literature skills.
  4. Effective oral and written communication skills including notebook keeping, graphing, writing laboratory reports, using computers for data analysis, and developing research presentations.
  5. An understanding of the impact of physics on industry, society, the environment, and an appreciation of the role and responsibilities of physicists in today’s world.

The Bachelor of Science degree in Physics consists of three Options. Students following the Physics Option prepare for research, industrial, and governmental careers or for graduate study in physics or related fields. Students who wish to pursue careers in medical physics, motion science or gain admission to medical, dental, or pharmacy school usually follow the Physics for Biosciences Applications Option.

Completion of the Secondary Teaching Option in Physics qualifies students for an Initial Type 09 Illinois High School Certificate with a high school endorsement in science and a physics designation for grades 9-12. Certification requires the successful completion of the Illinois Certification Tests of Basic Skills, Physics Content, and Assessment of Professional Teaching (Secondary 6-12). The Secondary Teaching Program is accredited by the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), and meets Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) standards in science education.

Assessment is an integral part of the physics program. It is expected that students take all exams and complete all surveys that are administered as part of the assessment schedule for the program. Copies of our assessment schedule, as well as past reports, are available in the department office.

The department offers minor sequences in chemistry, physics and physical science for students majoring in other disciplines.

Honors in Physics Program

  1. Students can apply to the Honors Program in Physics if they have a 3.25 GPA in Physics courses, and overall GPA of 3.00, have completed 60 credit hours, and have completed three semesters of General Physics.
  2. Students in the Honors Program must maintain a 3.25 GPA in Physics courses and 3.00 GPA overall to remain in the Honors Program, and to be awarded departmental Honors at graduation. Should a student’s GPA fall below these levels, the Honors student will be given one semester to bring the GPA up to the required levels.
  3. Students entering the Honors Program will be advised by the Departmental Honors Committee until an Honors Thesis Committee is established for a particular student. The students’ thesis committee will be composed of the primary mentor (chosen by the student) and two additional science faculty (chosen by the student in consultation with the primary mentor). One of the committee members could be from an area other than Physics.

Specific Honors Program Requirements in Physics:

    1. Honors students will register for 6-9 credit hours in courses designated as Honors.
      1. The Honors courses have a unique number designation and are cross-listed with non-Honors courses. Students in the Honors section of the courses are required to read a scientific paper on a topic pertinent to the course. The paper should be published in a peer reviewed journal such as the American Journal of Physics, or similar, as chosen by the instructor. The student is required to provide a detailed analysis of the publication in the form of a final paper. Details of the paper project will be left to the course instructor.
      2. Physics Honors Courses

Physics 3115 - Honors Classical Mechanics I

Physics 3155 – Honors Electricity and Magnetism I

Physics 3255 - Honors Quantum Mechanics I

    1. Students may choose any two of the above Honors courses, depending on student interest. Students are permitted to take all three courses if desired. Students must earn a B or higher in all Honors courses.
  1. Honors students will propose and be engaged in at least one outreach activity.
    1. Honors students will write a brief outreach proposal that must be approved by the student’s Honors Committee.
    2. Once approved, the student should initiate the outreach activity and is encouraged to involve other members of the department (students, staff, and faculty).
    3. These activities might include inviting students to CSU for a science activity, visiting a local school to perform an activity, holding a session about careers in science, tutoring several hours a week for a semester, mentoring younger students in research, etc.
  2. Honors Students will write an Honors Thesis.
    1. Each Honors student is required to register for 6 credits in Physics 4905, the Honors Thesis course. With the approval of their thesis committee a student would typically register for 3 credits of Physics 4905 in a given semester then register for another 3 credits of Physics 4905 the following semester. In the first semester the student would concentrate on research work, and in the second semester the student would complete the research work and prepare a paper or a talk that would be presented to the student’s committee.
    2. The Honors thesis is the culminating activity for the student and be based on an independent research project or an independent study project (Library thesis). A thesis proposal must be approved by the Honors thesis committee. In most cases the thesis work will be based on the work completed during the Honor Thesis Course.
    3. An Honors student will defend their thesis in an open forum before their graduation date. The date of this defense will be decided by the Honors thesis committee.
    4. The Honors Thesis Committee may add an outside member (on/off campus reader) to aid in thesis review if appropriate.

Physics Option (PHYS)

General Requirements

Admission to the program is contingent upon good academic standing and acceptance by the department. A grade of C or above is required in transfer credit in all physics, chemistry, and mathematics courses. A maximum of one physics course with a D grade earned at Chicago State University will be accepted.

Completion of 121 semester hours of work:

30 hours in general education (refer to liberal arts curriculum outline) consisting of 9 hours in humanities, 9 hours in the social sciences, 6 hours in a single foreign language, and 6 hours in composition; 49 hours in physics; 36 hours in supportive courses; 6 hours in electives; and passing the examination on the state and federal constitutions. Students in this Option are required to take 12 hours of embedded requirements (no additional credits) to strengthen their general education background including 3 hours of critical thinking, 3 hours of diversity, 3 hours of fine arts, and 3 hours of interdisciplinary coursework; each from a list of approved University courses.

Specific Requirements

Required Courses in Physics (49 credit hours)

PHYS 1010 or CHEM 1010*; PHYS 1600/160, 2110/211, 2220/222, 2330/233, 2700/270, 2710/271, 3110/311 or 3115, 3150/315 or 3155, 3210/321, 3250/325 or 3255, 3450/345, 4120/312, 4160/316, 4260/326, and 4850/385, and either PHYS 4500/350 or PHYS 4900/390 (at least 2 credit hours).

*PHYS 1010 or CHEM 1010 is required only for entering freshmen and transferring freshmen.

Required Courses in Mathematics and Computer Science (22 credit hours)

MATH 1410/261, 1420/262, 2430/263, and 2550/271; either MATH 2200/201 or MATH 4450/356; CPTR 1100/141.

Required Courses in Biology, Chemistry, and Physical Science (14 credit hours)

CHEM 1550/155, 1560/156; either PH S 1140/114 or 1150/115; and any introductory biology course (3 credit hours).

Elective Courses (6 credit hours)

Courses to be selected with approval of a physics academic advisor.

Physics for Bioscience Applications Option (PHYB)

General Requirements

Admission to the program is contingent upon good academic standing and acceptance by the department. A grade of C or above is required in transfer credit in all chemistry, mathematics, and physics courses. A maximum of one physics course with a D grade earned at Chicago State University will be accepted.

Completion of 122 semester hours of work:

30 hours in general education (refer to liberal arts curriculum outline) consisting of 9 hours in humanities, 9 hours in the social sciences, 6 hours in a single foreign language, and 6 hours in composition; 34 hours in physics; 61 hours in supportive courses; and passing the examination on the state and federal constitutions. Students in this Option are required to take 12 hours of embedded requirements (no additional credits) to strengthen their general education background including 3 hours of critical thinking, 3 hours of diversity, 3 hours of fine arts, and 3 hours of interdisciplinary coursework; each from a list of approved University courses.

Specific Requirements

Required Courses in Physics (34 credit hours)

PHYS 1010 or CHEM 1010*; PHYS 2110/211, 2220/222, 2330/233, 2700/270, 3110/311 or 3115, 3150/315 or 3155, 3250/325 or 3255, 3450/345, 4850/385 and 3 credits of a Physics elective at the 3000 or 4000 level.

*PHYS 1010 or CHEM 1010 is required only for entering freshmen and transferring freshmen.

Required Courses in Mathematics and Computer Science (19 credit hours)

MATH 1410/261, 1420/262, 2430/263, and 2550/271; CPTR 1100/141.

Required Courses in Chemistry and the Biological Sciences (33 credit hours)

CHEM 1550/155, 1560/156, 2500/251, and 2510/254; BIOL 1710/171; ZOOL 2040/204 and 2050/250; PSLY 2040/204; BOT 2050/205.

Required Course in Communications (3 credit hours)

CMAT 2030/203.

Elective Courses (6 credit hours)

6 cr. hrs. must be selected from PE 3010/301; PE 3030/303; 2000-level or above PSYC courses; or courses in the biological sciences. Courses to be selected with approval of a physics academic advisor.

Suggested General Education Courses

Introductory ECON course; PSYC 1100/141 and PSYC 2080/231.

Secondary Teaching Option in Physics (PHYT)

General Requirements

Students must:

  • Pass the examination on the state and federal constitutions.
  • Complete 127 credit hours in: General education 33 credit hours
  • Area of specialization 67 credit hours
  • Professional Education 27 credit hours
  • Prior to recommendation for certification the student must pass an oral interview including, but not limited to a “practice lesson;” prepare a teaching portfolio; and present proof that all admission requirements have been fulfilled as determined by the College of Education and the Department of Chemistry and Physics.

Specific Requirements

General Education (33 credit hours)

Composition (6 credit hours)

ENG 1270/127 and 1280/128.

Foreign Language (6 credit hours)

One year of a single foreign language.

Humanities (9 credit hours)

CMAT 1130/113; either PHIL 1020/204 or PHIL 1030/221 (fulfills Critical Thinking Requirement); Fine Arts elective (3 cr. hrs.).

Social Sciences (12 credit hours)

HIST 1300/130 or 1310/131 or POL 1010/101; PSYC 1100/141 and 2040/204; Diversity elective (3 cr. hrs.).

Students in this Option are encouraged to take an Interdisciplinary course (3 credit hours) to strengthen their general education background.

Area of Specialization (66 credit hours)

Required Physics Courses (31 credit hours)

PHYS 1010 or CHEM 1010*; PHYS 1600/160, 2110/211, 2220/222, 2330/233, 2700/270, 3110/311 or 3115, 3150/315 or 3155, 3250/325 or 3255, 4500/350, and 4550/355.

*PHYS 1010 or CHEM 1010 is required only for entering freshmen and transferring freshmen.

Required Supportive Courses (36 credit hours)

PHYS 1092/092; BIOL 1710/171; CHEM 1550/155 and 1560/156; either PH S 1140/114 or GEOG 1400/131; MATH 1710/171, 1410/261, 1420/262, 2430/263, and 2550/271.

Professional Education (27 credit hours)

ELCF 1520/152 and 2000/200; PSYC 2020/206; S ED 4301/301 and 4303/303*; ELCF 4500/353*; READ 4100/306*, CHEM 4630/363* and 4750/375*; CAS 2630/363*.

These courses must be passed with at least a grade of C.

* Restricted to students admitted to the College of Education.

Minor in Physical Science (24 credit hours)

Grades of C or better are required in all courses to be counted towards completion of the minor. Coursework up to a maximum of 12 credit hours may be allowed to simultaneously fulfill requirements for one major and this minor. The requirements for a minor must be completed prior to graduation in order for the minor to appear on the transcript. Contact the chairperson of the department for more information about a physical science minor.

Required Courses (16 credit hours)

One of the following chemistry sequences:

CHEM 1550/155 and 2010/201; or CHEM 1550/155 and 1560/156; and one of the following physics sequences:

PHYS 1510/151 and 1520/152; or PHYS 2110/211 and 2220/222.

Elective Courses (8 credit hours)

Completion of 8 credit hours of elective courses in chemistry, physics, or physical science to be selected with the approval of a departmental academic advisor.

Minor in Physics (18 credit hours)

The requirements for a minor must be completed prior to graduation in order for the minor to appear on the transcript. For more information about a physics minor, contact a physics academic advisor.

Required Courses (12 credit hours)

PHYS 2110/211, 2220/222, and 2330/233.

Elective Courses (6 credit hours)

Completion of 6 credit hours in physics to be selected from PHYS 3110/311, 3150/315, 3210/321, 3250/325, 4120/312, or 4160/316.

Physics (PHYS) Course Offerings

1000/100 PHYSICS CALCULATIONS LECTURE AND DISCUSSION /2 (1)

Prerequisite: Concurrent enrollment in PHYS 1510/151 or PHYS 211/2110.

Problem solving skills for a first course in general physics.

1010/101 PRACTICAL SKILLS FOR SUCCESS IN SCIENCE (1)

Prerequisite: Entering freshmen science student or sophomore transfer science student.

Time management, goal setting, test taking strategies, electronic communication, understanding academic and career options, campus resources and policies, history and traditions of CSU, and use of effective oral and written language skills. Credit will not be given for both PHYS 1010 and CHEM 1010.

1020/102 FRESHMAN SKILLS TUTORIAL II LECTURE AND LABORATORY /2 (1)

Prerequisite: PHYS 1010/101.

Continuation of PHYS 1010/101.

1092/092 ILLINOIS PHYSICS TEACHER CERTIFICATION REVIEW (1)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3110/311 or PHYS 3115 and concurrent enrollment inPHYS 4630/363.

Review of topics in preparation for the state certification test in science. May not be counted for degree credit. Pass or fail awarded.

1510/151 GENERAL PHYSICS I LECTURE AND LABORATORY /7 (4)

Prerequisite: MATH 1250/171 orco-requisite: MATH 1210/163.

Foundations of physics without calculus. Kinematics, mechanics, thermodynamics, properties of solids, liquids and gases. Additional course fee. IAI: P1 901 P1 900L BIO 903

1520/152 GENERAL PHYSICS II LECTURE AND LABORATORY /7 (4)

Prerequisite: PHYS 1510/151.

Continuation of PHYS 1510/151. Simple harmonic motion, waves and sound, electromagnetism, elementary DC and AC circuits, elementary optics, atomic structure and spectra. Additional course fee. IAI: BIO 904 

1600/160 INTRODUCTION TO PHYSICS PROFESSIONS (1)

Survey of career opportunities for physicists in industry, government, and education. A review of the skills, training, and education required for the various occupations. For physics majors only. May not be used for general education.

2100/210 INDEPENDENT STUDY (1-3)

Prerequisite: Consent of the department.

Faculty supervised study of selected topics.

2110/211 GENERAL PHYSICS I WITH CALCULUS: MECHANICS LECTURE AND LABORATORY /7 (4)

Co-requisite: MATH 2410/261.

Foundation of physics using calculus as a tool. Kinematics, Newton’s laws of motion, energy and momentum conservation, wave motion. Additional course fee. IAI: EGR 911 P2 900L MTH 921

2220/222 GENERAL PHYSICS II WITH CALCULUS: ELECTROMAGNETISM AND OPTICS /7 (4)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2110/211 and successful completion of the English qualifying exam;co-requisite: MATH 2420/262.

Continuation of PHYS 2110/211. Electrostatics, electrical circuits, magnetism Maxwell’s equations, geometrical and physical optics.

Additional course fee. IAI: EGR 912

2250/225 THERMODYNAMICS AND INSTRUMENTAL OPTICS /2 (1)

Co-requisite: PHYS 2220/222.

Laws of thermodynamics, fundamentals of geometrical and physical optics with application to analytical instruments. Credit not given for both PHYS 2330/233 and 2250/225. Additional course fee.

2330/233 GENERAL PHYSICS III WITH CALCULUS: THERMODYNAMICS, OPTICS AND MODERN PHYSICS /7 (4)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2110/211; co-requisite: PHYS 2220/222 and successful completion of English qualifying examination.

Continuation of PHYS 2220/222. Waves, laws of thermodynamics, geometrical and physical optics, relativity, atomic and nuclear physics. Credit not given for both PHYS 2330/233 and 2250/225.

Additional course fee. IAI: EGR 914.

2700/270 ELECTRONICS I LECTURE AND LABORATORY /6 (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2220/222.

Introduction to semiconductor circuits. Discrete circuits: transistors, field effect transistors, mental oxide semiconductors, and complementary metal oxide semiconductors, devices. Amplifiers, oscillators. Additional course fee.

2710/271 ELECTRONICS II LECTURE AND LABORATORY /6 (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2700/270.

Introduction to integrated circuits. Amplifiers, operational amplifiers, and digital circuits. Additional course fee.

3110/311 CLASSICAL MECHANICS I (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233.

Newton’s laws, oscillators, gravitation, Lagrangian and Hamiltonian methods, central force motion.

3115 HONORS CLASSICAL MECHANICS I (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233; consent of the department.

Newton’s laws, oscillators, gravitation, Lagrangian and Hamiltonian methods, central force motion. Literature analysis required. Credit not given for both PHYS 3115 and PHYS 3110.

3150/315 ELECTRICITY AND MAGNETISM I (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233.

Electric fields, magnetic fields, Faraday’s Laws, Maxwell’s equations.

3155 HONORS ELECTRICITY AND MAGNETISM I (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233; consent of the department.

Electric fields, magnetic fields, Faraday’s Laws, Maxwell’s equations. Literature analysis required. Credit not given for both PHYS 3155 and PHYS 3150.

3210/321 THERMODYNAMICS (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233.

Foundations of thermodynamics. Kinetic theory, laws of thermodynamics, heat engines, entropy, thermodynamic potential, Maxwell’s relations.

3220/322 STATISTICAL MECHANICS (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3210/321.

Classical and quantum mechanical statistical mechanics including micro-canonical, canonical, and grand canonical ensembles and applications.

3250/325 INTRODUCTION TO QUANTUM MECHANICS I (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3110/311 or PHYS 3115; successful completion of the English qualifying exam.

Schrodinger’s equation with applications to simple systems in one and three dimensions. Angular momentum and hydrogen atom.

3255 HONORS QUANTUM MECHANICS I (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3110/311 or PHYS 3115; consent of the department.

Schrodinger’s equation with applications to simple systems in one and three dimensions. Angular momentum and hydrogen atom. Literature analysis is required. Credit not given for both PHYS 3255 and PHYS 3250.

3300/330 FUEL CELL TECHNOLOGY /6 (4)

Prerequisite: CHEM 1560/156; PHYS 2250/225 or PHYS 2330/233; successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Basics of a functional fuel cell; theory, principles, history, components, material properties, and processes of different fuel cells. Additional course fee.

3450/345 MATHEMATICAL METHODS OF PHYSICS (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233; MATH 2450/271; successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Coordinate systems, vector analysis, special functions, Fourier analysis, Green’s functions, boundary value problems, matrices and tensors. Credit not given for both PHYS 3450/345 and MATH 4800.

3500 TEACHER IMMERSION INSTITUTE: PHYSICS (2)

Prerequisites: Consent of Department.

Work with practicing high school teachers and learn to develop instructional materials and assessment tools for use in the physics classroom.  Implement these materials in a classroom setting and reflect on student understanding.  Course may be repeated for a maximum of four hours. 

4010/301 SENIOR SEMINAR I LECTURE AND LABORATORY /2 (1)

Prerequisite: Successful completion of the English qualifying exam.

Presentations by students, faculty & invited speakers on new developments in physics; research reports in the literature; preparation for graduate school, teaching, and industrial research/jobs.

4020/302 SENIOR SEMINAR II LECTURE AND LABORATORY /2 (1)

Prerequisite: Successful completion of the English qualifying exam.

Continuation of PHYS 4010/301.

4120/312 CLASSICAL MECHANICS II (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3110/311 or PHYS 3115; successful completion of the English qualifying exam.

Continuation of PHYS 3110/311. Coupled oscillators, waves, systems of particles, non-inertial reference frames, rigid bodies, fluid mechanics.

4160/316 ELECTRICITY AND MAGNETISM II (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3150/315 or PHYS 3155; successful completion of the English qualifying exam.

Relativity applied to electromagnetic fields, radiation, applications.

4260/326 ADVANCED QUANTUM MECHANICS (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3250/325 or PHYS 3255; successful completion of the English qualifying exam.

Spin, angular momentum, Clebsch-Gordan series, perturbation theory, scattering, applications.

4500/350 TEACHING INQUIRY-BASED PHYSICS /3 (2)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233 and successful completion of the English qualifying exam.

Practicum in teaching physics as a process of inquiry. Focus on the underlying physics concepts. Assist the instructor in the introductory physics classroom. Weekly readings from state and national standards as well as from research in science education.

4550/355 EXPERIMENTAL PHYSICS APPARATUS IMPLEMENTATION /7 (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3110/311 or PHYS 3115, PHYS 3150/315 or PHYS 3155, and 4500/350; successful completion of the English qualifying exam.

The set up, debugging, and implementation of apparatus for major demonstrations and laboratories for excellent high school physics programs. Creation of experimental notebooks describing principles and

operating configurations for successful pedagogy. Additional course fee.

4600/360 RELATIVITY (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233 and successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Introduction to special relativity; Lorentz covariance, Maxwell’s equations, relativistic kinematics and dynamics. Discussion of general relativity and cosmology.

4630/363 METHODS OF TEACHING PHYSICS AND PHYSICAL SCIENCE IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS /FIELD (3)

Prerequisite: Admission to the College of Education; ELCF 4500/353 and READ 4100/306 (or concurrent enrollment in ELCF 4500/353 and READ 4100/306);co-requisite: PHYS 1092/092 and CAS 3630/363.

Methods of teaching physics and physical science in high school grades 9-12 and middle school grades 6-8. Fifty hours of tutoring middle grade and high school grade students.

4650/365 INTRODUCTION TO SOLID STATE PHYSICS (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3150/315 or PHYS 3155; successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Structure of solids, lattice vibrations, free electron model, band theory. Properties of solids.

4670/367 NUCLEAR PHYSICS (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233 and successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Theories of the atomic nucleus, nuclear reactions, and radioactive processes.

4680/368 ELEMENTARY PARTICLE PHYSICS (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3250/325 or PHYS 3255; successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Families of particles, relativistic kinematics and scattering theory, invariance principles, quantum chromodynamics and the quark model.

4700/370 ELECTRONICS III LECTURE AND LABORATORY /6 (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2710/271 and successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Introduction to microprocessor interfacing. Additional course fee.

4710 READINGS IN SCIENCE EDUCATION: RESEARCH, THEORY, AND PRACTICE (1)

Prerequisite: Consent of the department. May be repeated for up to 3 credit hours.

Readings and discussion of contemporary and historic work in science education with an emphasis on how scholarly work can promote effective instruction.

4720 INQUIRY-BASED INSTRUCTION IN THE HIGH SCHOOL CLASSROOM: ACTIVITY-BASED PHYSICS. (3)

Prerequisite: Consent of the department .

Variety of physics topics and activities appropriate for implementing in the high school classroom. Pedagogical implications of inquiry-based instructional materials and use of modern equipment in the classroom.

4730 PEDAGOGICAL CONTENT KNOWLEDGE IN SCIENCE: PHYSICS (6)

Prerequisite: Consent of the department;co-requisite: MATH 2410.

Foundations of physics with emphasis on pedagogical content knowledge. Kinematics, Newton’s laws of motion, energy and momentum conservation, wave motion. Action research project is required. Additional course fee. IAI: EGR 911 P2 P2 900L, MTH 921.

4750/375 STUDENT TEACHING: SECONDARY LEVEL PHYSICS /FIELD (6)

Prerequisite: Admission to College of Education; PHYS 1092/092 and 4630/363; completion of all other coursework in the approved program; a 2.5 grade point average in professional education, and in al coursework required in the approved program; and a passing score on the subject matter/content area certification test within the last five years.

Off-campus placement in secondary level schools in two or more grade levels. University and cooperating school supervision. Five full days including seminar for 16 weeks. No other courses may be taken during the semester of student teaching. 

4800/380 OPTICS (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 3150/315 or PHYS 3155; successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Geometric and physical optics. Electromagnetic and quantum aspects of light.

4850/385 ADVANCED UNDERGRADUATE LABORATORY I LECTURE AND LABORATORY /6 (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 2330/233 and successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Selected experiments in optics and nuclear and modern physics; emphasis on laboratory technique and scientific report writing. Additional course fee.

4860/386 ADVANCED UNDERGRADUATE LABORATORY II LECTURE AND LABORATORY /6 (3)

Prerequisite: PHYS 4850/385 and successful completion of English qualifying exam.

Continuation of PHYS 4850/385. Additional course fee.

4900/390 RESEARCH (1-6)

Prerequisite: Consent of the department.

Laboratory or theoretical investigation performed under faculty advisement. Course may be repeated under different topics for a maximum of six hours.

4905 SENIOR THESIS (3)

Prerequisite: Consent of the department

Senior thesis. Laboratory or theoretical investigation performed under faculty advisement. Course may be repeated for a maximum of six hours.

4980/398 SELECTED TOPICS IN PHYSICS (1-6)

Prerequisite: Consent of the department.

Topics of current interest in physics. Course may be repeated under different topics for a maximum of six hours.

Physical Science (PH S) Course Offerings

1000/100 SCIENCE, SOCIETY AND SURVIVAL (3)

Science and its relationship with society. Emphasis on the environment and conflicts between the environment, technology and survival. IAI: P1 901

1010/101 ENERGY IN TODAY’S WORLD (3)

Energy resources and conversion, with a focus on the generation of electrical energy. Applications range from electric cars to nuclear fusion generating plants. Effects of large scale energy conversion on humans in terms of resource depletion, pollution and the increasing dependence upon automation.

IAI: P1 901

1060/106 DISCOVERING OCEANOGRAPHY (3)

The fundamental geological, chemical, and physical marine processes necessary to understand and interpret the ocean’s environment and its human impact.

1080/108 CRITICAL THINKING ABOUT TECHNOLOGY (3)

Areas of current interest in science and technology will be used as the focal point for development of critical thinking skills, including critical reading, analysis of problems, and reasoning. Topics of focus will vary by instructor and what is in the public eye. (Critical thinking course).

1100/110 PRACTICAL PHYSICS I LECTURE AND LABORATORY /4 (3)

Prerequisite: MATH 099 level II or equivalent. Fundamentals of physics are applied to everyday life.

Basic principles such as kinematics, thermodynamics, electricity, and radiation are covered, along with an introduction to the scientific worldview. Additional course fee. IAI: P9 900L

1130/113 PRACTICAL CHEMISTRY I LECTURE AND LABORATORY /4 (3)

Fundamentals of chemistry are applied to everyday life. Basic principles such as atoms, molecules, periodic properties, and organic chemistry are applied to consumer products, soaps, polymers, viscosity, and water. Additional course fee. IAI: P1 903L

1140/114 PRACTICAL EARTH AND SPACE SCIENCE I LECTURE AND LABORATORY /4 (3)

Introduction to the study of continents, oceans, and the atmosphere; weather and climate of planet Earth, along with an introduction to astronomy and space science.

Additional course fee. IAI: P1 905L

1150/115 BASIC ASTRONOMY LECTURE AND LABORATORY /4 (3)

Prerequisite: MATH 099 level II or equivalent.

An introductory lecture and laboratory class in astronomy focusing in the physical principles of the solar system, stars, galaxies, cosmology, and humanity’s place in the universe. Additional course fee. IAI: P1 906L

1800 FORENSIC CHEMISTRY (3)

Application of physical science to analyzing evidence in criminal investigations. Topics covered in this interdisciplinary lecture/laboratory course include organic and inorganic analysis of samples, forensic toxicology, forensic blood analysis, fingerprints, firearms and impressions, drug analysis, arson investigations, DNA, and an introduction to microscopes and modern chemical instrumentation. Emphasis placed on understanding the science behind the techniques used in evaluating evidence. Additional course fee.

1850 GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE (3)

Principles from chemistry and urban ecology to examine global climate change and its impact on society.  Current literature supporting and opposing climate change will be reviewed.  The impact of human activity on climatic chanage and the benefits of sustainable practices will be explored. 

2100/210 PRACTICAL PHYSICS II LECTURE AND LABORATORY /4 (3)

Prerequisite: PH S 1100/110 and MATH 099 level II or equivalent.

Continuation of Physical Science 1100/110. Kinematics, dynamics, heat and temperature, electricity and magnetism, and geometrical and physical optics. Dual emphasis on content and on teaching methods for a standards-based science classroom.

2113/213 PRACTICAL CHEMISTRY II LECTURE AND LABORATORY /4 (3)

Prerequisite: PH S 1130/113 and MATH 099 level II or equivalent.

Continuation of Physical Science 1130/113. Chemical safety, nuclear science, color science, molecular structures, chemical separations, electrophysics, solution preparation, environmental chemistry, stoichiometry, and nutrition. Dual emphasis on content and on teaching methods for a standards-based science classroom.

2120 AFRICAN AMERICANS IN SCIENCE AND SOCIETY (3)

This course emphasizes and brings into focus the important and colossal contributions made by African Americans in Science. The course will explore the relationship between the scientist and the society in which he/she lived. The areas of contributions include math, physics, chemistry, engineering, medicine and sociology.