Physics, the most basic of the natural sciences, entails the discovery and elucidation of elementary principles which shape our physical universe. Students who pursue the bachelor‘s degree in physics will learn how these principles can systematically be applied to understand diverse phenomena and solve seemingly complex problems. For example, devices such as lasers, GPS systems, and MRI scanners were all invented and developed by applying fundamental physical principles. Physics graduates find employment in the various areas of the physical sciences; in tech and health industries; in finance; and in computer science, library science, education, law, and medicine.
Top Five
Reasons to Study
This Major
  1. Develop strong critical thinking skills.

  2. Practice collaborative problem solving.

  3. Gain hands-on experience in research.

  4. Prepare yourself for a wide variety of career opportunities.

  5. Equip yourself with skills to tackle real-world problems in your future career.

College of Arts and Sciences
Where Can I Go?

A degree in Physics can take you in multiple directions. Students in Physics may choose to pursue a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or Bachelor of Science (BS), a Master of Arts (MA) or Master of Science (MS), or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD). Physics provides students with a foundation for employment in:

Electronics industries

Engineering firms

Telecommunications companies

Financial services

Healthcare practices

Research institutes and organizations

Federal government agencies

Scientific journals and book publishing

Colleges and universities
Alumni Jobs

Senior solutions architect (machine learning)


Full stack software engineer

Data scientist

Assistant professor

Director of institutional research
Courses You
May Need

1st Year
MATH 251-253; PHYS 251-253, PHYS 290 (lab 2x); 1-2 2xx classes from dept approved list

2nd Year
MATH 256, 281, 282; PHYS 351-353, 391; 1-2 2xx classes from dept approved list

3rd Year
Upper-division PHYS, incl 6-12 creds lab/research. See dept for suggested course paths.

4th Year
Upper-division PHYS, incl 6-12 creds lab/research. See dept for suggested course paths.

Major Credits
Required 96
Electives 12-20

Total 108-116

Core Education Requirements

BS or BA Degree Minimum = 180 credits.

Core Education is approximately 71—83 credits depending on transfer credits and placement scores and requires courses in:


Math and/or CIS (BS) or Language (BA)

US: Difference, Inequality, Agency

Global Perspectives

Areas of Inquiry in:

Arts and Letters

Social Science / Science
What Will I Learn?

Quantitative analysis

Experimental design

Laboratory research


Technical writing

Environmental safety and health

Teaching and tutoring
Experiential learning opportunities

Research (labs and faculty research groups)



The Advanced Projects Lab

Teaching labs

PHYS 401
Specialized Courses

Solar and Renewable Energies

Biological Physics

Physicists’ View of Nature

Independent Research

Quantum Physics

Classical and Modern Optics

Digital Electronics
Add A Minor Or Certificate

Computer and Information Science






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Tykeson College and Career Advising

An equal-opportunity, affirmative-action institution committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. This publication will be made available in accessible formats upon request. © 2020 University of Oregon. Revised: 8/17/2020