Physicists lead the research that is driving the technological revolution, from lasers and medical imaging to radio astronomy and supercomputers. Using a logical approach, they explore the basic principles that make our physical universe work. Physicists design and perform experiments with lasers, cyclotrons, telescopes, mass spectrometers, and other cutting-edge equipment. Employing observation and analysis, they attempt to discover the laws that describe the forces of nature, such as gravity, electromagnetism, and nuclear interactions. They also find ways to apply physical laws and theories in fields that affect us all – nuclear energy, electronics, optics, materials, communications, aerospace technology, and medical instrumentation.
Physicists require a strong background in both science and mathematics, the ability to approach concepts both theoretically and practically, and top-notch problem-solving skills. Research and development work is an integral part of most physicists’ responsibilities. Some perform basic research to increase scientific knowledge; others conduct applied research with the goal of creating new devices, products, and processes. For instance, basic research in solid-state physics led to the development of transistors and then to the integrated circuits used in computers.
While most physicists work in research and development or for the federal government, some may find work in quality control, inspection, testing, or other production-related fields. Those who hold a bachelor’s degree are often employed as research assistants or technicians and work in a wide variety of scientific fields. They may set up computer networks and laboratory equipment, teach science in secondary schools, or even take on nontraditional roles, such as systems analysts or database administrators. Graduates may also qualify for positions related to engineering, mathematics, and computer science.
The physics laboratories at Lawrence Tech are housed on the second floor, near the offices of chemistry faculty members. The university supports two major teaching laboratories:
- College/University 1 Physics, Technical Physics, Masters of Science Education, Science 203
- College/University 2 Physics, Technical 2 Physics, Masters of Science Education, Science 211
All undergraduates at Lawrence Tech are provided with their own laptops, packed with the specialized software they will need in their education. Introductory chemistry laboratories are fully computerized, as are many of those in more advanced courses. Many of the instruments listed below include dedicated computers that drive them and analyze the output. Others interface directly with student laptops.
Why Physics at LTU?
The Bachelor of Science in Physics program at Lawrence Technological University offers you excellent preparation for immediate employment in this competitive field, as well as for advanced study. Courses such as classical and contemporary physics, quantum mechanics, thermal and condensed matter physics, electricity and magnetism, and nuclear physics can prepare you for work in industry and in fundamental and applied research. The physics curriculum incorporates computer technology throughout the range of courses and state-of-the-art computerized labs allow analysis of data gathered with interfaced sensors.
Opportunities for hands-on experiences abound – you will have the opportunity to participate in internships at such well-known national facilities as the Argonne, Los Alamos, and Oak Ridge National Laboratories, Fermilab, and the National Radio Astronomy Observatory, and as a senior you will complete an individualized research project. The depth of the program also can give you a competitive edge when applying to highly regarded graduate programs in physics, law, or medicine.
CurriculumYour 125-credit-hour program consists of:
|Humanities (with emphasis on leadership)||29|
|Math and Computer Science||26|
|Physics and Physical Science||48|
Sample Core Courses:
Analytical Mechanics, Condensed Matter Physics, Contemporary Physics, Electricity and Magnetism, Optics, Lasers, and Microscopy, Quantum Mechanics, Thermal Physics.
PHYSICS AND ENGINEERING DUAL MAJORS
Students who take 36 additional physics credit hours can obtain a dual degree in physics and mechanical engineering. Students who take an additional 32 physics credit hours may obtain a dual degree in physics and electrical engineering. Please see the physics advisor for required and elective courses.
PHYSICS AND CHEMISTRY DUAL MAJORS
Students must take all of the required chemistry and physics courses in both majors. If the student completes the physics major first, 30 additional chemistry credit hours are required. If chemistry is completed first, 23 additional physics credit hours are required. These additional hours apply only if appropriate electives are chosen.
Graduates with a degree in Physics have many career options:
Health physics and nuclear medicine
Lasers and holography
Meteorology and weather science
Research and development