Physics : About The Program

About Our Degrees

Acceptance Criteria - Physics, BS

Minimum GPA of 2.0 in MTH 141-MTH 142 and PHY 107-PHY 108 (or PHY 117-PHY 118, preferred), PHY 158.

Acceptance Criteria - Mathematical Physics, BS

Minimum GPA of 2.5 in MTH 141-MTH 142 and PHY 107-PHY 108 (or PHY 117-PHY 118, preferred), PHY 158.

Acceptance Criteria - Physics, BA

Minimum GPA of 2.0 in MTH 141-MTH 142 and PHY 107-PHY 108 (or PHY 117-PHY 118, preferred), PHY 158.

Acceptance Criteria - Teaching of Science Program, BA

Minimum GPA of 2.0 in MTH 141-MTH 142 and PHY 107-PHY 108 (or PHY 117-PHY 118, preferred), PHY 158. Teacher Education Institute (TEI) also requires a minimum GPA of 3.0 overall for admission.

Acceptance Criteria - Physics, Minor

Minimum GPA of 2.0 in MTH 141-MTH 142 and PHY 107-PHY 108 (or PHY 117-PHY 118, preferred), PHY 158.

Acceptance Criteria - Other Physics Programs

The Department of Physics participates in the joint majors in Computational Physics and Engineering Physics. There is also a 5-year BS in Computational Physics/MS in Physics program. For the acceptance criteria, see the Computational Physics and Engineering Physics entries.

Acceptance Information

In order to get into any of the undergraduate degree programs students should contact the Undergraduate Director, Professor Bernard Weinstein, 209 Fronczak Hall, (716) 645-6730 (3645), email phyugadv@buffalo.edu. There are no application deadlines. Each year about 15-20 students are accepted into one of the undergraduate degree programs. At present there are about 50 majors in the BS and BA programs in physics and another 30-35 in the interdisciplinary programs (Computational Physics, Engineering Physics, Mathematical Physics).

Degree Requirements

Please see Degrees and Policies.

About Our Courses

The department offers lecture courses, lecture/lab courses, and lab courses. The courses taken by just physics majors typically have 10 to 20 students in them. TA's are only used as recitation or lab instructors in the introductory courses. Students interested in pursuing a degree in physics should begin by taking MTH 141-MTH 142 and PHY 107-PHY 108 (or PHY 117-PHY 118, preferred) and PHY 158 or an equivalent honors course. This is particularly important for PHY 107 and PHY 108, which have PHY 117 and PHY 118 as their equivalent honors courses (preferred), and are designed to benefit physics majors and strong engineering students.

For course descriptions, please see Courses.

About Our Faculty

The faculty is comprised of approximately equal number of theorists and experimentalists. Faculty are involved in all areas of physics including condensed matter physics, biophysics, high energy physics, and astrophysics/cosmology.

Five faculty members have received the SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching, and eight are Fellows of the American Physical Society.

The Director of Undergraduate Studies is Professor Bernard Weinstein who can be contacted at phyugadv@buffalo.edu, 716-645-6730 (3645) or 209 Fronczak Hall.

See a list of our Undergraduate Faculty.

Practical Experience and Special Academic Opportunities

Undergraduate Research and Practical Experience

Undergraduate physics majors regularly become involved in the research activities of the department. This can involve independent study, part-time employment, and/or full-time employment during the summer.

Interested students should visit http://www.physics.buffalo.edu/undergraduate/UndergraduateResearchMentors.. This web page describes the undergraduate research mentors program of the physics department. Students earn credit for their undergraduate research in PHY 498 Undergraduate Research.

Honors, Awards, and Scholarships

To graduate with departmental honors, a student must excel in coursework and complete a senior thesis. The designations given below are awarded to students who have the corresponding GPAs in courses required for the Department of Physics degree programs and who have completed a senior thesis:

Distinction 3.25
High honors 3.50
Highest honors 3.75

Outstanding Senior Award
Each year the Department of Physics chooses an outstanding senior. This student receives a certificate and a monetary award from the department, and also receives a College of Arts and Sciences Dean's Outstanding Senior Award.

Sekula Scholarship
Each year the department awards up to seven scholarships to undergraduate physics majors. This award is based on merit, as well as financial need.

Extracurricular Activities

Undergraduate Physics Club

This organization is an active group open to all students. It sponsors special speakers and workshops, and organizes open houses and social activities. For more information, call 716-645-2017. Students in the club also belong to the Society of Physics Students (SPS) which is affiliated with the American Physical Society. Within SPS, students with a GPA above 3.5 are eligible for election to the Sigma Pi Sigma National Physics Honor Society.

See the UB Student Association.

Links to Further Information About this Program

Updated: 13 Nov 2012 06:02:00 EST