Major Requirements

Listed below are the requirements for the Physics major. In addition to the requirements for the major, students must also satisfy all of the university general education requirements and the College of Letters & Science breadth and other degree requirements. Degree requirements will vary depending on when you took your first college class. You are strongly advised to consult your advisor to ensure you stay on track towards a degree. Read more about the degree requirements on the L&S Degree Requirements web pages.

Requirements

Total Physics credits

43 credits

Two semesters of calculus-based introductory physics (10 credits)

For requirement, Physics 219 and 220 are recommended strongly; however, the Physics 209/214 and 210/215 courses may be taken with the consent of the undergraduate advisor.

  • Physics 219 - Physics I: CalculusBased, Studio Format, 5 credits
  • Physics 220 - Physics II: CalculusBased, Studio Format, 5 credits
    or
  • Physics 209 - Physics I (Calculus Treatment), 4 credits
  • Physics 214 - Lab Physics I (Calculus Treatment), 1 credit
  • Physics 210 - Physics II (Calculus Treatment), 4 credits
  • Physics 215 - Lab Physics II (Calculus Treatment), 1 credit


Required courses (30 credits)
  • Physics 270 - Introduction to Computational Physics, 3 credits
    or
    Physics 370 - Computational Physics, 3 credits
  • Physics 309 - Physics III: Modern Physics, 3 credits
  • Physics 317 - Thermodynamics, 3 credits
  • Physics 325 - Optics, 4 credits
  • Physics 411 - Mechanics, 4 credits
  • Physics 420 - Electricity and Magnetism I, 3 credits
  • Physics 422 - Electricity and Magnetism II, 3 credits
  • Physics 441 - Introduction to Quantum Mechanics I, 4 credits
  • Physics 442 - Introduction to Quantum Mechanics II, 3 credits
One of the following laboratory courses (3 credits)
(satisfies L&S research requirement)
  • Physics 406 - Introduction to Infrared Microspectroscopy, 3 credits
  • Physics 408 - Experiments in Linear Electronics, 3 credits
  • Physics 409 - Modern Physics Laboratory, 3 credits
  • Physics 670 - Electron Microscopy Laboratory, 3 credits
    or
    Physics 391 - Undergraduate Research Participation
No elective courses are required, but students are encouraged to select electives from Physics or Astronomy courses 300 level or above from the following list.
  • Astron 400 - Astrophysics I, 3 credits
  • Astron 401 - Astrophysics II, 3 credits
  • Physics 305 (405) - Medical Physics, 3 credits
  • Physics 306 - Introduction to Biophysics, 3 credits
  • Physics 351 - Condensed Matter Physics, 3 credits
  • Physics 370 - Computational Physics (if not selected above), 3 credits
  • Physics 391 - Undergraduate Research Participation, 1-6 credits
  • Physics 406 - Introduction to Infrared Microspectroscopy (if not selected above), 3 credits
  • Physics 408 - Experiments in Linear Electronics (if not selected above), 3 credits
  • Physics 409 - Modern Physics Laboratory (if not selected above), 3 credits
  • Physics 515 - Statistical Mechanics, 3 credits
  • Physics 517 - Special Relativity, 3 credits
  • Physics 531 - Principles of Quantum Mechanics I, 3 credits
  • Physics 532 - Principles of Quantum Mechanics II, 3 credits
  • Physics 541 - Elementary Particles, 3 credits
  • Physics 551 - Introduction to Solid State Physics I, 3 credits
  • Physics 651 - Introduction to Solid State Physics II, 3 credits
  • Physics 670 - Electron Microscope Laboratory (if not selected above), 3 credits
Additional Requirements

The Physics Standard option requires that students take at least 15 credits in upper-level (numbered 300 and above) courses in residence at UWM.

GPA Requirements

The College requires that students attain at least a 2.5 GPA on all credits in the major attempted at UWM. In addition, students must attain a 2.5 GPA on all major credits attempted, including any transfer work.