Skip to content. Skip to main navigation.

The Department of Physics

Today is Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Department of Physics



108 Science Hall • Box 19059 • 817-272-2266
www.uta.edu/physics
Academic Advising: 108 Science Hall • 817-272-2266


Overview

The Department of Physics offers three Bachelors of Science Degree programs and a Bachelor of Arts Degree program.

The Bachelor of Science Degree programs include one which prepares students for careers in science and technology, another for medical school preparation, and a third for students wanting to minor in an engineering discipline. The Bachelor of Arts Degree in physics is intended for those students who seek a broader education while retaining a firm foundation in physics. When combined with the required education courses, the Bachelor of Arts program is also appropriate for students interested in becoming school teachers.*

Students considering a physics major should schedule an appointment with an undergraduate advisor in physics to discuss their degree and career options. Physics majors are encouraged to participate in research projects under faculty guidance for course credit or financial reward. In this way, undergraduate students have the choice of gaining hands-on experience from a variety of research disciplines, including astrophysics, computational physics, high energy physics, optics, space physics, and theoretical and experimental condensed matter physics.

The faculty of the Physics Department encourages students who qualify to participate in the University Honors College. Scholarships may be offered every year to new students majoring in physics.

*Students desiring certification for teaching at the secondary level must fulfill certain requirements as prescribed in the Education section of this catalog.



Back to top


Requirements for a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics

English

Six hours of composition.

Literature

Three hours of literature or an approved substitution.

Liberal Arts Elective

Three hours of courses taught in the College of Liberal Arts.

U.S. History

Six hours of American history or three hours of American and three hours of Texas history. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

U.S. Political Science

Six hours covering U.S. and Texas constitutions. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

Fine Arts

Three hours from architecture, art, dance, music, or theatre arts.

Social/Cultural Studies

Three hours of designated courses (see Advising Center Web site).

Computer Science

Three hours from CSE 1310 (or higher numbered CSE course), PHYS 2321, MATH 3345, or other suitable course.

Natural Science other than Physics

CHEM 1441 and 1442, and a minimum of six hours from courses for majors offered in the departments of biology and/or earth and environmental sciences.

Math

MATH 1426, 2425, 2326, 3318 or 3319, and a 4000-level course.

Students may be able to obtain a math minor by consulting with the Department of Mathematics for additional requirements.

Physics (Major)

45 hours of physics including PHYS 1443, 1444, 2311, 3183, 3313, 3321, 4117, 4315, 4319, 4324, 4326, plus 14 additional hours of approved courses.

Electives and Total Hours

Sufficient to give the total of 120 hours, of which at least 36 must be advanced (3000/4000) level courses.

Typical Course Sequence

Details of a personal course sequence should be made with the guidance of an undergraduate advisor, particularly since many courses in physics are not offered every year. For all entering freshmen, it is important to begin the mathematics sequence, starting with MATH 1323, in the first semester.

Freshman Year

ENGL 1301 and 1302, HIST 1311 and 1312, MATH 1323 and 1426, CHEM 1441 and 1442, Fine Arts (3 hours), plus elective (3 hours).

Sophomore Year

MATH 2425 and 2326, PHYS 1443 and 1444, Biology and/or Geology (6-8 hours), POLS 2311 and 2312, ENGL 2309 (literature), Social/Cultural Studies (3 hours), Liberal Arts elective (3 hours).

Junior Year

MATH 3319, PHYS 2311, 3313, and 12 hours of advanced physics courses, plus elective (3 hours).

Senior Year

MATH 4320, PHYS 2321 and /or PHYS 2445 and/or CSE (3 hours), and 15 hours of advanced physics courses, plus elective (2 hours).



Back to top


Requirements for a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics with Medical School Preparation

This program offers the broad background in fundamental science and strong problem solving ability of a physics degree as well as specific biology and chemistry medical school requirements. The combination of skills developed in this program is designed to provide the intellectual foundation necessary for excellence in research and the practice of medicine.

English

Six hours of composition.

Literature

Three hours of literature or an approved substitution.

Liberal Arts Elective

Three hours of courses taught in the College of Liberal Arts.

U.S. History

Six hours of American history or three hours of American and three hours of Texas history. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

U.S. Political Science

Six hours covering U.S. and Texas constitutions. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

Fine Arts

Three hours from architecture, art, dance, music, or theatre arts.

Social/Cultural Studies

Three hours of designated courses (see Advising Center Web site).

Computer Science

Three hours from CSE 1310 (or higher numbered CSE course), PHYS 2321, MATH 3345, or other suitable course.

Chemistry

16 hours, consisting of CHEM 1441, 1442, 2181, 2182, 2321, and 2322.

Mathematics

14 hours, consisting of MATH 1426, 2425, 2326, 3319 (or 3318).

Biology (Minor)

18 hours, including BIOL 1441 and 1442, and six hours of 3000/4000-level courses.

Physics (Major)

36 hours including PHYS 1443, 1444, 2311, 3183, 3313, 3321, 4117, 4315 or 4319, 4326, plus 11 hours of additional hours of approved courses.

Electives and Total Hours

Sufficient to give the total of 120 hours, of which 36 hours must be in advanced (3000/4000-level) courses.



Back to top


Requirements for a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics with Engineering Emphasis

This program allows the student to augment a rigorous training in physics with the choice of a minor in a suitable engineering discipline, thus combining a theoretical understanding of the basic physical theories with a practical more detailed understanding given in the College of Engineering. Such a combination would be a bonus for employment in the engineering-type professions often chosen by physics majors.

English

Six hours of composition.

Literature

Three hours of literature or an approved substitution.

Liberal Arts Elective

Three hours of courses taught in the College of Liberal Arts.

U.S. History

Six hours of American history or three hours of American and three hours of Texas history. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

U.S. Political Science

Six hours covering U.S. and Texas constitutions. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

Fine Arts

Three hours from architecture, art, dance, music, or theatre arts.

Social/Cultural Studies

Three hours of designated courses (see Advising Center Web site).

Computer Science

Three hours from CSE 1310 (or higher numbered CSE course), PHYS 2321, MATH 3345, or other suitable course.

Natural Science other than Physics

CHEM 1441 and a minimum of four hours from courses for majors offered in the departments of chemistry, biology, or earth and environmental sciences

Mathematics

14 hours, consisting of MATH 1426, 2425, 2326, 3319 (or 3318).

Engineering (Minor)

18 or more hours as required by the appropriate engineering department, of which six hours must be 3000/4000-level courses.

Physics (Major)

40 hours including PHYS 1443, 1444, 2311, 3183, 3313, 3321, 4117, 4315, 4324, 4326, plus 12 additional hours of approved courses.

Electives and Total Hours

Sufficient to give the total of 120 hours, of which 36 hours must be in advanced (3000/4000-level) courses.



Back to top


Requirements for a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Physics

English

Six hours of composition.

Literature

Three hours of literature or an approved substitution.

Liberal Arts Elective

Three hours of courses taught in the College of Liberal Arts.

U.S. History

Six hours of American history or three hours of American and three hours of Texas history. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

U.S. Political Science

Six hours covering U.S. and Texas constitutions. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

Fine Arts

Three hours from architecture, art, dance, music, or theatre arts.

Social/Cultural Studies

Three hours of designated courses (see Advising Center Web site).

Modern and Classical Languages

Four hours in a modern or classical language.

Natural Science other than Physics

Eight hours from courses offered to majors in the departments of biology, chemistry, and earth and environmental sciences.

Mathematics

14 hours, consisting of MATH 1426, 2425, 2326, 3319 (or 3318).

Computer Science

Three hours from CSE 1310 (or higher numbered CSE course), PHYS 2321, MATH 3345, or other suitable course.

Minor

18 hours in a Liberal Arts or other appropriate discipline, of which six hours must be 3000/4000-level courses.

Physics (Major)

36 hours, including PHYS 1443, 1444, 2311, 3183, 3313, 3321, 4117, 4315, 4326, plus 11 additional hours of approved courses.

Electives and Total Hours

Sufficient to give the total of 120 hours, of which 36 hours must be in advanced (3000/4000-level) courses.



Back to top


Requirements for a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics with a Master's Degree in Materials Science and Engineering (Fast Track Program)

The Fast Track Program enables outstanding senior undergraduate students in Physics to satisfy degree requirements leading to a bachelor's degree in Physics while simultaneously pursuing a master's degree (M. Engr.) in Materials Science and Engineering. The essential elements of the Fast Track Program involve the use of up to 12 hours of graduate coursework to apply towards an undergraduate degree in Physics while simultaneously applying up to 9 hours of undergraduate coursework towards a graduate degree in Materials Science and Engineering. Thus, the program allows that up to 21 hours to be used to satisfy both undergraduate and graduate degree requirements. Additional details of the Fast Track Program are provided subsequently in this catalog section.

English

Six hours of composition.

Literature

Three hours of literature or of an approved substitute.

Liberal Arts Elective

Three hours of courses taught in the College of Liberal Arts.

U.S. History

Six hours of American history or three hours of American and three hours of Texas history. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

U.S. Political Science

Six hours covering U.S. and Texas constitutions. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

Fine Arts

Three hours from architecture, art, dance, music, or theatre arts.

Social/Cultural Studies

Three hours of designated courses in social or cultural anthropology, archaeology, social/political/cultural geography, economics, sociology, classical studies, linguistics, history, humanities, philosophy, communications or political science.

Computer Science

Three hours from CSE 1310 (or higher numbered CSE course), PHYS 2321, MATH 3345, or other suitable course.

Natural Science other than Physics

CHEM 1441, 1442 and a minimum of four hours from courses for majors offered in the Departments of Chemistry, Biology, or Geology.

Mathematics

14 hours, consisting of MATH 1426, 2425, 2326, and 3318 or 3319.

Materials Science and Engineering

12 hours, including MSE 3300 and nine hours from 3000/4000-level or graduate MSE courses.

Physics (Major)

41 hours, including PHYS 1443, 1444, 2311, 3183, 3313, 3321, 3445, 4117, 4315, and 4326, plus 12 additional hours of approved courses.

Electives

Sufficient to give the total of 120 hours, of which 36 hours must be in advanced (3000/4000-level) courses towards the undergraduate degree in Physics. Details of the requirements for the M.Engr. degree in Materials Science and Engineering are available in the graduate catalog.



Back to top


Options Programs

The Department of Physics offers several options targeted for students majoring in other fields of science, engineering, mathematics, and music. These options are designed for students to develop their understanding of the fundamental properties of nature about which their vocations center.
The options and their course requirements are listed below. Some of the courses have prerequisites. Most students interested in these options will satisfy the prerequisites by virtue of their degree program.
In many cases, the prerequisites can be waived for students doing an option. Contact the undergraduate physics advisor for specific information.

1. Physics of Modern Technology

PHYS 1444

General Technical Physics II

PHYS 3313

Modern Physics

PHYS 4315

Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics

PHYS 4325

Solid State Physics

2. Acoustics

PHYS 1401

Physics for non-specialists I

PHYS 1402

Physics for non-specialists II

PHYS 1300

Acoustics

PHYS 4181 or 4281

Special Problems

3. Electrodynamics

PHYS 1444

General Technical Physics II

PHYS 3321

Intermediate Electricity and Magnetism

PHYS 4324

Advanced Electricity and Magnetism

PHYS 2445 or 3445

Electronics or Optics

4. Mathematical Physics

PHYS 2311

Mathematical Methods of Physics

PHYS 2321

Computational Physics

PHYS 3321 or 4315

Intermediate Electricity and Magnetism or Classical Mechanics

PHYS 4315 or 4326

Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics or Quantum Physics

5. Optics

PHYS 1444

General Technical Physics II

PHYS 3313

Modern Physics

PHYS 3445

Optics

PHYS 4171 or 4271

Advanced Optics Laboratory

6. The Nature of the Universe

PHYS 1444

General Technical Physics II

PHYS 3313

Modern Physics

PHYS 3315

Astrophysics and Cosmology

PHYS 3446

Nuclear and Particle Physics



Back to top


Fast Track Program with BS in Physics and M.Engr. in Materials Science and Engineering

Students at the end of their freshman year who have completed PHYS 1443 and PHYS 1444 with a GPA of 3.0 and express an interest in the Fast Track Program will be designated as "Fast Track Bound" and encouraged to maintain a GPA of 3.0 or better to retain their eligibility. Students who have been identified as "Fast Track Bound" as well as other outstanding undergraduates in Physics can apply for the Fast Track Program when they are within 30 hours of completing their bachelor's degrees. They must have completed at least 30 hours at UTA, achieving a GPA of at least 3.0 in those courses, and have an overall GPA of 3.0 or better in all college courses. Additionally, they must have completed at least 9 hours of specified undergraduate Foundation Courses that are listed below with a GPA of 3.3 in these courses.

Foundation Courses Required for Admission into the Fast Track Program:

MSE 3300

Introduction to Materials Science and Engineering

PHYS 3313

Inroduction to Modern Physics

PHYS 3321

Intermediate Electricity and Magnetism

Once admitted, students will be allowed to take a mixture of advanced undergraduate and graduate courses that may be used to satisfy both bachelor's and master's degree requirements. Fast Track students can use up to 6 hours of undergraduate courses from the list below to apply towards their M.Engr. degree in Materials Science and Engineering as well as towards their BS degree in Physics:

Courses that may be used to satisfy both bachelor's and master's degree requirements

PHYS 4315

Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics

PHYS 4319

Advanced Mechanics

PHYS 4324

Advanced Electricity and Magnetism

PHYS 4325

Solid State Physics

PHYS 4326

Introduction to Quantum Mechanics

The balance of the 36 hours required for the M. Engr. degree is selected from an approved list of graduate Physics and Materials Science Engineering courses. For more details about the specifics of the program contact the Undergraduate Advisor in Physics or Graduate Advisor in Materials Science and Engineering.



Back to top


Second Major

A person who satisfies the requirements for any other baccalaureate degree qualifies for having physics named as a second major upon completion of PHYS 1443, 1444, 2311 and 26 hours of physics courses with higher numbers. The specific courses to be used must be approved by the undergraduate advisor and the chair of the Department of Physics.



Back to top


Teacher Certification

Students interested in earning a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Physics with secondary teacher certification, or in Physics as a second teaching field should refer to the "Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics with Composite Physics and Mathematics Teaching Certification" and the "Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics with Composite Physical Science Teacher Certification" degree plans for teacher certification requirements.



Back to top


Oral Communication and Computer Competency Requirements

The university oral communication competency requirement will be met by the seminar course PHYS 4117, which includes an oral presentation. This course is required of all physics majors.

The university computer competency requirement may be satisfied by taking the Computer Proficiency Test administered by UT Arlington or through CSE 1310(or a higher numbered CSE course), PHYS 2321 or MATH 3345. For the BS and BA degrees, these requirements are automatically satisfied.



Back to top


Requirements for a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics with Composite Physics and Mathematics Teacher Certification

English

Six hours of composition.

Literature

Three hours of literature or an approved substitution.

Liberal Arts

PHIL 2314 [UTeach course]

U.S. History

Six hours of American history or three hours of American and three hours of Texas history. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

U.S. Political Science

Six hours covering U.S. and Texas constitutions. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

Fine Arts

Three hours from architecture, art, dance, music, or theatre arts.

Social/Cultural Studies

Three hours of designated courses (see Advising Center Web site).

Computer Science

Three hours from CSE 1310 (or higher numbered CSE course), PHYS 2321, MATH 3345, or other suitable course.

Chemistry

CHEM 1441, 1442

Mathematics (Minor)

26 hours, consisting of MATH 1426, 2425, 2326, 2330 [UTeach], 3300, 3301, 3319, 3321.

Physics (Major)

37 hours including PHYS 1443, 1444, 2311, 3183, 3313, 3321, 4117, 4315, 4319, 4326, 4391 [UTeach], plus 6 additional hours of approved courses.

UTeach (Minor)

18 hours consisting of SCIE 1101, 1102, 4607, 4107, EDUC 4331, 4332, 4333

Electives and Total Hours

Sufficient to give the total of 125 hours, of which 36 hours must be in advanced (3000/4000-level) courses.



Back to top


Requirements for a Bachelor of Science Degree in Physics with Composite Physical Science Teacher Certification

English

Six hours of composition.

Literature

Three hours of literature or an approved substitution.

Liberal Arts Elective

PHIL 2314 [UTeach Course]

U.S. History

Six hours of American history or three hours of American and three hours of Texas history. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

U.S. Political Science

Six hours covering U.S. and Texas constitutions. (This requirement is mandated by state law and cannot be waived.)

Fine Arts

Three hours from architecture, art, dance, music, or theatre arts.

Social/Cultural Studies

Three hours of designated courses (see Advising Center Web site).

Computer Science

Three hours from CSE 1310 (or higher numbered CSE course), PHYS 2321, MATH 3345, or other suitable course.

Chemistry (Minor)

20 hours, CHEM 1441, 1442, 2335, 2285, 3315, 3321, 3181.

Mathematics

14 hours, consisting of MATH 1426, 2425, 2326, 3319.

Physics (Major)

37 hours including PHYS 1443, 1444, 2311, 3183, 3313, 3321, 4117, 4315, 4319. 4326, 4391 [UTeach], plus 6 additional hours of approved courses.

UTeach (Minor)

18 hours, consisting of SCIE 1101, 1102, 4607, 4107, EDUC 4331, 4332. 4333

Electives and Total Hours

Sufficient to give the total of 125 hours, of which 36 hours must be in advanced (3000/4000-level) courses.



Back to top


Requirements for a minor in astronomy for non-physics majors

A minimum of a total 18 credit hours (including a minimum of 6 at 3000-4000 level) are required. Transfer students must complete a minimum of 9 hours at UTA, 6 of which must be 3000-4000 level.

Core Courses (required):

General College Phys I (PHYS 1441), General College Phys II (PHYS 1442), Introductory Astrophysics (PHYS 2315), Astrophysics & Cosmology (PHYS 3315), Astrobiology (PHYS 3316)

Elective Courses:

Special Problems (PHYS 4181, 4281, with Astronomy research faculty), Special Topics (PHYS 4191, 4291, 4391, when a suitable course is offered. Approval by Physics advisor is required)



Back to top


Requirements for a minor in astrophysics for non-physics majors

A minimum of a total 18 credit hours (including a minimum of 6 at 3000-4000 level) are required. Transfer students must complete a minimum of 9 hours at UTA, 6 of which must be 3000-4000 level.

Core Courses (required):

General Techical Phys I (PHYS 1443), General Techical Phys II (PHYS 1444), Introductory Astrophysics (PHYS 2315), Astrophysics & Cosmology (PHYS 3315)

Elective Course:

Modern Physics (PHYS 3313), Astrobiology (PHYS 3316), Optics (PHYS 3445), Nuclear & Particle (PHYS 3446), Special Problems (PHYS 4181, 4281, with Astrophysics research faculty), Special Topics (PHYS 4191, 4291, 4391, when a suitable course is offered. Approval by Physics advisor is required)



Back to top


Physics Faculty

Chair

Professor Weiss

Professors

Brandt, De, Koymen, Liu, Lopez, Z. Musielak, Ray, Sharma, White, Zhang, Cuntz and Yu

Associate Professors

Fazleev, Chen, Farbin

Assistant Professors

Deng, Jackson, Mohanty, Ngai, Park, Huda

Lecturer (full time)

Veerabathina, Spurlock

Adjunct Professors

Claytor, Hira, Jaafari, D. Musielak, Rejcek, Schachar, Tian, Torti

Professors Emeritus

Fry, Self, Thompson



Back to top


Course Descriptions

View Course Descriptions for:

Physics (PHYS)



Back to top