DEGREES OFFERED       [BS]       [BA]       [Minor]       [Combined BS/MS]

Course Flow Chart (PDF)

The laws of physics are the starting point for most scientific research and engineering applications. Students majoring in physics obtain broad-based knowledge and experience in applying these laws, as well as hands-on experience in building electronic equipment and in performing experiments.

This provides a wide range of career options. Many of our students go on to graduate study in physics, but an equal number pursue advanced degrees in other science disciplines, all branches of engineering, and medical school. Physics majors are employed in industry doing applied work such as the development of the next generation of transistors and in academia seeking the answers to such fundamental questions as what the ultimate constituents of matter are.

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

For either the B.S. or the B.A. degree, two different options are listed for some of the courses, e.g. PHY 2048 or 2060. In this case, the second course contains selected advanced topics not covered in the first course. Both courses prepare students for taking upper-level physics classes. Students are encouraged to see a physics department adviser to determine which course is appropriate for them.

Residency Requirement: Transfer students must take a minimum of 15 credits of the required Physics courses at the University of Florida.

Research: All undergraduate majors are encouraged to participate in research activities. Advanced students may also be eligible to enroll in certain graduate courses, thereby accelerating their education. Physics majors are urged to confer with a department adviser as early as possible and especially as their educational goals evolve.

Bachelor of Science Degree (BS)

The Bachelor of Science [BS] Degree Program is for students who are considering going to graduate school in Physics or a closely related discipline. It provides a rigorous training in all areas of undergraduate Physics, and students completing the BS degree will be prepared for graduate student in Physics at any institution.

[Sample Schedule: Regular Option]
[Sample Schedule - Enriched Option]
[Sample Schedule - Physics Courses - Both Options]

Bachelor of Arts Degree (BA)

The Bachelor of Arts [BA] Degree Program is for students who want to major in physics but are not presently contemplating physics graduate studies. It provides a good foundation in the fundamentals while offering increased flexibility in the major, through fewer required courses and more electives. The BA degree requires three fewer upper level physics classes and one less mathematics class than the BS degree. Thus, students pursuing the BA degree will have additional space in their schedule for for parallel studies in another discipline, perhaps adding another major, and also pre-professional preparation.

[Requirements ]
[Sample Schedule Freshman-Senior]


A minor indicates that a student has a significant body of work in a discipline outside their major. Someone with a minor in physics ought to possess general knowledge of the primary 20th century developments in physics and to have demonstrated some ability to solve intermediate-level problems. Specifically, the minor in physics consists of a completed sequence in general physics [PHY2048-2049-2048L-2049L, or equivalent]; PHY3101 or PHY3063 - Modern Physics; and any two additional 3000- or 4000- level physics courses listed in the physics major course sequence. The following courses may not count towards a Physics minor: PHY3018, PHY3036, PHY3400, and Individual Study courses. All grades must be C or better, and no more than 3 credits at the 3000-level or above may be earned by transfer.

Course substitutions from discplines outside of Physics are not allowed for the Physics minor. The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences also has a rule that minor course work must include at least 6 credits not required for the major. For example, this precludes an Astronomy BS with a Physics minor, although only a few extra courses are required to get a Physics BA with the Astronomy BS degree.

Combined BS/MS degree program

The Physics department has, like many departments a U.F., a program to allow students to graduate in five years with both a Bachelors and Masters degree by taking up to 12 graduate credits while still an undergraduate. This program is good for students who intend to stay in the U.F. Physics department for Ph.D. work and also for students who are going to graduate school in a discipline other than Physics. For students who intend to go to graduate school in Physics elsewhere we recommend that you go to your intended graduate school immediately after graduation so that you can be integrated into a research group as soon as possible. It is also worth mentioning that the U.F. Physics department typically only has enough funds to support our Ph.D. students - not students in a terminal masters degree. Qualified undergraduates can take graduate courses regardless of their participation in this program.

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