Department of Physics

See also: General Degree Information

Department-specific courses:
Physics (PHYS)

Who's Who in the Department of Physics

Chair: Lawrence Pinsky

Kevin Bassler, Rene Bellwied, Edgar A. Bering III, Ching-Wu Chu, Wei-Kan Chu, Gemunu Gunaratne, Bambi Hu, Ed V. Hungerford, Alex Ignatiev, Donald J. Kouri, Kwong Hon Lau, John Miller, Shuheng Pan, Lawrence Pinsky, George Reiter, Venkat Selvamanickam, Wu-Pei Su, Chin-Sen Ting, Arthur B. Weglein, Lowell Wood

Associate Professors:
Eric Bittner, Margaret Cheung-Wynker, Seamus Curran, Pei-Herng Hor, Vassily Lubchenko, Carlos Ordonez, Pradeep Sharma, Donna W. Stokes, Ooman Varghese

Assistant Professors:
Mini Das, Haibing Peng, Lisa Whitehead


Physicists formulate mathematical descriptions of nature that constitute a set of theories to provide the best and most detailed predictive capability in all situations. Physicists also devise and carry out experiments designed to probe the unknown and test these theories. When confronted with experimental evidence that contradicts these theories or are beyond their reach, physicists either revise them to accommodate the new data or else abandon them in favor of better models. Students majoring in physics must have a strong foundation in mathematics and an overwhelming curiosity about how nature works. Generally, physicists tend either to be more primarily focused on doing experiments or to concentrate on making the mathematical models.

The Department of Physics offers the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in physics and Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in physics.

The demand for trained physicists is strong. Graduates with the B.S. in physics are prepared to enter physics graduate programs leading to the master's or doctoral degrees in physics. They also find entry level positions in the aerospace industry, the high-tech materials and electronics industries, and in fields as diverse as commodities or stock brokerage, health care, and the energy industry. Graduates with a B.A. in physics are generally prepared to teach physics at the high school level once they have obtained appropriate teacher certification.

The department's teaching and research fields of specialization include atmospheric and space physics, biological and medical physics, statistical physics, physics of finance, radiation science, superconductivity, surface physics, signal and image processing, high energy, medium energy, and heavy ion physics, high-performance distributed computing, and seismic physics. Research opportunities are available for highly motivated undergraduate students in faculty laboratories and such participation is strongly encouraged.

Catalog Publish Date: August 22, 2012
This Page Last Updated: September 20, 2012