Entry-Level Course Sequence Suggestions
Students considering a major in physics who qualify for Mathematics 134, 231 or 234 as first-year students should take those courses and Physics 110, 111. Those without advanced standing in mathematics should take Mathematics 133, 134 as first-year students and Physics 110, 111 as sophomores; such students may take the full graduate study preparation program with the exception of Physics 411 and 412 in preparation for graduate work in physics.
Physics 110, 111, and 212 provide training useful to students of any of the physical sciences or mathematics. These courses have calculus prerequisites. Students majoring in the life and earth sciences are also encouraged to take these courses if they have the necessary mathematical background.
The algebra-based sequence Physics 103, 104 is primarily for students majoring in the life and earth sciences. A student who has taken all or part of Physics 103, 104 and is interested in further work in physics should consult the department about an appropriate pathway to more advanced courses.
Physics courses numbered 050-070 are designed for College and Conservatory students whose primary interests may not lie in the natural sciences but who wish to have a first hand acquaintance with the techniques and results of physical science.
The Honors Program is open to outstanding senior-year major students at the invitation of the department. Students in this program will normally be expected to complete the graduate study preparation program of courses described above and must carry out a special project in experimental or theoretical physics or astrophysics under the direction of a member of the department. Honors students write a thesis based on their work and take comprehensive examinations. The physics and astrophysics concentrations require a second approved laboratory course; this requirement may be waived upon request for an Honors student whose project is in experimental physics.