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Physics

Course Descriptions

Information and FAQ about the General Physics courses can be found here.

See PHY & PHZ Courses from Undergraduate Course Listing. Undergraduate Catalog

PHY 2020 Conceptual Physics NS (3) AS PHY
No credit for Physics or Mathematics majors. A qualitative, non-mathematical investigation of physics, emphasizing its influence on life today.

PHY 2048 General Physics I NS (3) AS PHY
PR: MAC 2281 or MAC 2311. Must be taken concurrently with lab and, if dropped, then dropped simultaneously. May not receive credit for both the PHY 2053 and PHY 2048 courses. First semester of a two semester sequence of calculus-based general physics (mechanics, wave motion, sound, thermodynamics, geometrical and physical optics, electricity, and magnetism) for physics majors and engineering students.

PHY 2048L General Physics I Laboratory (1) AS PHY
PR: MAC 2281 or MAC 2311. Must be taken concurrently with lecture and, if dropped, then dropped simultaneously. May not receive credit for both the PHY 2053L and PHY 2048L courses. First semester of a two-semester sequence of general physics (mechanics, wave motion, sound, thermodynamics, geometrical and physical optics, electricity, and magnetism) and laboratory for physics majors and engineering students.

PHY 2049 General Physics II NS (3) AS PHY
PR: MAC 2282 or MAC 2312, PHY 2048, PHY 2048L. Must be taken concurrently with lab and, if dropped, then dropped simultaneously. May not receive credit for both the PHY2054 PHY 2054 and PHY 2049 courses. Second semester of general physics and laboratory for physics majors and engineering students.

PHY 2049L General Physics II Laboratory (1) AS PHY
PR: MAC 2282 or MAC 2312, PHY 2048, PHY 2048L. Must be taken concurrently with lecture and, if dropped, then dropped simultaneously. May not receive credit for both the PHY2054L PHY 2054L and PHY 2049L courses. Second semester of general physics and laboratory for physics majors and engineering students.

PHY 2053 General Physics I NS (3) AS PHY
PR: MAC 1140 and MAC 1114, or MAC 1147. Must be taken concurrently with lab and, if dropped, then dropped simultaneously. May not receive credit for both the PHY 2053 and PHY2048 PHY 2048 courses. First semester of a two semester sequence of non-calculus-based general physics (mechanics, heat, wave motion, sound, electricity, magnetism, optics, modern physics) for science students.

PHY 2053L General Physics I Laboratory (1) AS PHY
Must be taken concurrently with lecture and, if dropped, then dropped simultaneously. May not receive credit for both the PHY 2053L and PHY 2048L courses. First semester of a two semester sequence of general physics (mechanics, heat, wave motion, sound, electricity, magnetism, optics, modern physics) laboratory for science students.

PHY 2054 General Physics II NS (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 2053, PHY 2053L. Must be taken concurrently with lab and, if dropped, then dropped simultaneously. May not receive credit for both the PHY 2054 and PHY 2049 courses. Second semester of non-calculus-based general physics for science students.

PHY 2054L General Physics II Laboratory (1) AS PHY
PR: PHY 2053, PHY 2053L. Must be taken concurrently with lecture and, if dropped, then dropped simultaneously. May not receive credit for both the PHY 2054L and PHY 2049L courses. Second semester of general physics lab for science students.

PHY 3101 Modern Physics (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 2049, MAC 2283 or MAC 2313. Special relativity. Interaction of radiation with matter. Particle-wave duality. Atomic and x-ray spectra and Bohr model of atom. Schrodinger wave equation. Introduction to solid state physics.

PHY 3220 Classical Mechanics (4) AS PHY
PR: PHY 3101 and PHZ 3113. Topics covered: Newtonian mechanics, oscillatory motion, gravitation, Lagrangian and Hamiltonian Dynamics, Central-Force Motion, Dynamics of a System of Particles, Dynamics of Rigid Bodies, and Non-linear and coupled oscillations.

PHY 3323 Electricity and Magnetism I (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 2049, MAC 2283 or MAC 2313. Electrostatic fields and potentials, dielectrics, classical conductivity, RC circuits, Fourier and finite element methods. First semester of sequence PHY 3323, PHY 4324.

PHY 4424 Optics (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 3101 Reflection, refraction, dispersion, interference, diffraction and polarization.

PHY 3822L Intermediate Laboratory (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 2049 or equivalent; CR: PHY 3101. Experiments in modern physics, including the areas of atomic, nuclear, solid state and wave phenomena.

PHY 4324 Electricity and Magnetism II (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 3323. Introduction to special relativity, magnetic fields and potentials, magnetic materials, RL and RLC circuits, Maxwell’s equations and applications.

PHY 4523 Statistical Physics (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 3101, senior status. Statistical approach to thermodynamics and kinetic theory and introduction to statistical mechanics.

PHY 4604 Introduction to Quantum Mechanics (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 3101, or CI. Basic concepts of quantum mechanics with applications in atomic, nuclear, and condensed matter Physics.

PHY 4605 Quantum Mechanics II (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 4604.. Second semester of a two-semester sequence in quantum mechanics. Focus given to applications of Schrodinger equation.

PHY 4744C Introduction to Electronics and Test Instrumentation (3) AS PHY
PR: General Physics or CI. Introduces the fundamentals of analog and digital electronics used in measurements and instrumentation. Weekly labs give hands-on experience in breadboarding electronic circuits and using test instrumentation (oscilloscopes, digital multimeters, etc.)

PHY 4823L Advanced Laboratory (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 3822L. Experimental work primarily related to modern physics. Emphasis on experimental techniques used in current research.

PHY 4905 Independent Study (1-3) AS PHY
PR: CI. S/U only. Specialized, independent study determined by the student’s need and interest. The written contract required by the College of Arts and Sciences specifies the regulations governing independent study.

PHY 4910 Undergraduate Research (1-4) AS PHY
PR: Senior or advanced junior standing and CC. S/U only. An individual investigation in the laboratory or library or both, under the supervision of the instructor. Credit hours and other contractual terms, are to be determined by student/instructor agreement.

PHY 4930 Undergraduate Seminar (1) AS PHY
PR: Senior or advanced junior standing or CC. S/U only. All undergraduate physics majors must enroll in this course at least once. Regular attendance is required. This course introduces students to the research areas in the Physics Department.

PHY 4936 Selected Topics in Physics (1-4) AS PHY
PR: Senior or advanced junior standing and CC. Each topic is a course in directed study and under the supervision of a faculty member.

PHY 5720C Electronics for Research (3) AS PHY
A rigorous introduction to the fundamentals of analog and digital electronics. Theoretical circuit analysis and weekly labs introduce practical use of diodes, transistors, analog and digital Ics, breadboarding techniques and electronics test instrumentation. Spring Semester.

PHY 5937 Selected Topics in Physics (1-4) AS PHY
PR: Senior or advanced standing and CC. Each topic is a course in directed study under the supervision of a faculty member.

PHZ 2102 Problems in General Physics I (1) AS PHY
CR: PHY 2048 or PHY 2053. First semester of a two-semester sequence on solving problems in General Physics I. A course designed to be taken with the lecture course and to help students with developing problem-solving skills.

PHZ 2103 Problems in General Physics II (1) AS PHY
CR: PHY 2049 or PHY 2054. Second semester of a two-semester sequence on solving problems in General Physics II. A course designed to be taken with the lecture course and to help students with developing problem-solving skills.

PHZ 4151C Computational Physics (3) AS PHY
Introduction to computer applications in physics. Emphasis on numerical modeling and simulation of physics problems using linear algebra, differential equations and Monte Carlo methods. No prior programming experience required.

PHZ 4434 Materials Physics NS (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 2048, PHY 2049, PHY 3101. The physics and physical properties of materials. Strong emphasis is on the underlying physics of materials. Particular topics covered include crystal structure, phase, and electrical, thermal, optical, and magnetic properties of materials.

PHZ 4702 Applications of Physics to Biology and Medicine I (4) AS PHY
PR: PHY-2054, PHY-2054L or PHY-2049, PHY 2049L The first semester of a two-semester sequence, to discuss the applications of the physical concepts introduced in the General Physics sequence to biological systems and for medical applications. Restricted to non-majors.

PHZ 4703 Applications of Physics to Biology and Medicine II (4) AS PHY
PR: PHY-2054, PHY-2054L or PHY-2049, PHY 2049L; PHY 2053 or CI. The second semester of a two-semester sequence, to discuss the applications of the physical concepts introduced in the General Physics sequence to biological systems and for medical applications. Restricted to non-majors.

PHZ 5115 Methods of Theoretical Physics I (3) AS PHY
PR: MAP 2302 or CI. Applications of mathematical techniques to classical and modern physics. Vector spaces including Hilbert space, orthogonal functions, generalized functions, Fourier analysis, transform calculus, and variational calculus.

PHZ 5116 Methods of Theoretical Physics II (3) AS PHY
PR: MAP 2302 or CI. Applications of mathematical techniques to classical and modern physics. Selected topics in complex analysis, differential and integral equations, numerical methods, and probability theory.

PHZ 5156C Computational Physics I (3) AS PHY
PR: CGS 5765 or CI. C programming applied to real science and engineering problems. Data analysis, numerical algorithms, modeling, parallel computation. Subjects selected from current research may include neurobiology, quantum magnetism, chaos, finance, materials science.

PHZ 5304 Nuclear Physics (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 4604 or CI. Nuclear forces, nuclear models, nuclear structure, decay, nuclear reactions, and high energy physics.

PHZ 5405 Solid State Physics I (3) AS PHY
PR: PHY 3101, MAP 2302, CI. Crystal structure, x-ray and electron diffraction, mechanical and thermal properties of solids, electrical and magnetic properties of metals, band theory of metals, insulators, and semiconductors. First semester of sequence PHZ 5405, PHZ 6426.