Division of Science, Mathematics, and Computing


The Physics Program provides a firm foundation for work in a variety of areas, including graduate work in physics and allied fields. A student usually takes the core required courses listed in the college catalogue, although in some cases the student and faculty may decide that not all the courses are appropriate because of advanced preparation or the particular focus of the student’s work. The student also chooses a number of electives according to personal interests. Students are expected to follow the standard divisional procedure for Moderation and to fulfill the college-wide distribution and First-Year Seminar requirements.

Prior to Moderation, a student has usually completed Physics 141 and 142, Introduction to Physics I and II; Mathematics 141 and 142, Calculus I and II; and Physics 241, Modern Physics. Majors are required to complete the courses listed above plus Physics 221 and 222, Mathematical Methods of Physics I and II; Physics 303, Mechanics; Physics 312, Electricity and Magnetism; Physics 314, Thermal Physics; Physics 321, Quantum Mechanics; and the Senior Project.

Recent Senior Projects in Physics

  • “Competing Theories of Pitch Perception: Frequency and Time Domain Analysis”
  • “Complex Semiclassics: Classical Models for Tunneling Using Complex Trajectories”
  • “Plasma Striations in Vacuum Chambers”
  • “Two Topics in Astrophysics: Exoplanetary Gravitational Microlensing and Radio Interferometry”
In addition to the core required courses, electives include courses or tutorials in laboratory (Optics, Introduction to Electronics) or theoretical (General Relativity, Condensed Matter Physics) subjects, and other advanced studies.

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