

Per Berglund
PROFESSOR 
Benjamin Chandran
PROFESSOR 
Olof Echt
PROFESSOR EMERITUS 
Francois Foucart
Associate Professor 
F. William Hersman
PROFESSOR 
Maurik Holtrop
PROFESSOR 
Lynn Kistler
PROFESSOR 
Marc Lessard
PROFESSOR 
Elena Long
ASSISTANT PROFESSOR 
David Mattingly
ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR 
Joachim Raeder
Emeritus 
James Ryan
Emeritus 
Nathan Schwadron
PROFESSOR 
Karl Slifer
ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR 
Roy Torbert
Emeritus 
Jiadong Zang
ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR
B.S. in Physics
Physics Major (B.S.)
What is a Bachelor of Science in physics?
This program prepares students for careers in physics and a broad range of related disciplines, such as systems engineering and medical physics. Students will develop the technical skills needed to explore fundamental aspects of the universe, from subatomic particles to the origin of the cosmos.
Why study physics at UNH?
This program offers introductory physics in a lecture and studio format – an active learning environment that includes group work and labs, all in a single room with a professor and graduate teaching assistants. The style allows for a coherent, connected and supportive experience. One studio course integrates the study of calculus and physics, for a deeper understanding of both subjects. The program offers concentrations in astronomy, materials science and chemical physics, which allows students to focus their learning at the undergraduate level. You’ll have many research opportunities with physics faculty and research scientists, working on projects funded by NASA, the National Science Foundation, the Department of Education, Department of Defense, National Institutes of Health and other agencies and organizations. You’ll learn how to approach, analyze and solve complex problems as you develop new technologies, methods and theories that will prepare you for a range of careers in research, engineering and education.
Potential Careers
 Accelerator operator
 Aerospace sciences
 Applied optics
 Engineering research
 Fluids engineering and research
 High school physics teacher
 Materials research
 Medical physics
 Physical sciences technician
 Software engineering
 Systems engineering
DeMeritt Hall 237A
9 Library Way
Durham, NH 03824
Phone: (603) 8622669
Email: physics.dept@unh.edu
Connect with us
This form is only for prospective students who are not already enrolled at UNH. If you are a current UNH student and interested in this program, please reach out to the contact on this page.
Curriculum & Requirements
The bachelor of science degree in physics prepares students for professional work as physicists, and is the first step toward graduate work in physics. It is also excellent preparation for graduate programs in medicine, law, or engineering, as well as for technical jobs in industry. The required courses are those typically necessary for admission to graduate study in physics or astronomy.
Suggested Curriculum for B.S. in Physics
In this degree plan, "electives" include Discovery courses, Writing Intensive Courses, Physics electives, or electives required to meet 128 credit graduation requirement.
First Year  

Fall  Credits  
PHYS 400  Freshman Seminar  1 
PHYS 407  General Physics I  4 
MATH 425  Calculus I  4 
ENGL 401  FirstYear Writing  4 
CHEM 403 or CHEM 405 
General Chemistry I or Chemical Principles for Engineers 
4 
Credits  17  
Spring  
PHYS 408  General Physics II  4 
MATH 426  Calculus II  4 
CS 410P or IAM 550 
Introduction to Scientific Programming/Python or Introduction to Engineering Computing 
4 
Discovery Elective  4  
Credits  16  
Second Year  
Fall  
PHYS 505 & PHYS 506 
General Physics III and General Physics III Laboratory 
4 
PHYS 508  Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics  4 
MATH 528 or MATH 525 
Multidimensional Calculus or Linearity I 
06 
PHYS 601  Computational Physics Recitation I  1 
Discovery Elective  4  
Credits  1319  
Spring  
PHYS 615  Classical Mechanics and Mathematical Physics I  4 
PHYS 605  Experimental Physics I  5 
PHYS 602  Computational Physics Recitation II  1 
Select one of the following two options:  8 or 6  
(1) For students who took MATH 528: 

MATH 527 & MATH 645 
Differential Equations with Linear Algebra and Linear Algebra for Applications 

(2) For students who took MATH 525: 

MATH 526 
Linearity II  
Credits  1816  
Third Year  
Fall  
PHYS 616  Classical Mechanics and Mathematical Physics II  4 
PHYS 701  Quantum Mechanics I  4 
Discovery or Major Electives  8  
Credits  16  
Spring  
PHYS 702  Quantum Mechanics II  4 
PHYS 703  Electricity and Magnetism I  4 
Discovery or Major Electives  8  
Credits  16  
Fourth Year  
Fall  
PHYS 704  Electricity and Magnetism II  4 
PHYS 705  Experimental Physics II  4 
Discovery or Major Elective  4  
Capstone  4  
Credits  16  
Spring  
Electives  12  
Capstone  4  
Credits  16  
Total Credits  128132 
Code  Title  Credits 

University Discovery requirements ^{1}  
Bachelor of Science requirements  
Minimum physics requirements:  
PHYS 400  Freshman Seminar  1 
PHYS 407  General Physics I  4 
PHYS 408  General Physics II  4 
PHYS 505 & PHYS 506  General Physics III and General Physics III Laboratory  4 
PHYS 508  Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics  4 
PHYS 601  Computational Physics Recitation I  1 
PHYS 602  Computational Physics Recitation II  1 
PHYS 605  Experimental Physics I  5 
PHYS 615  Classical Mechanics and Mathematical Physics I  4 
PHYS 616  Classical Mechanics and Mathematical Physics II  4 
PHYS 701  Quantum Mechanics I  4 
PHYS 702  Quantum Mechanics II  4 
PHYS 703  Electricity and Magnetism I  4 
PHYS 704  Electricity and Magnetism II  4 
PHYS 705  Experimental Physics II  4 
Select two electives from the following:  8  
PHYS 708  Optics  
PHYS 710  Astrophysics I  
PHYS 712  Space Plasma Physics  
PHYS 718  Condensed Matter Physics  
PHYS 720  Nuclear Physics  
PHYS 764  General Relativity and Cosmology  
MATH 747  Introduction to Nonlinear Dynamics and Chaos  
MATH 753  Introduction to Numerical Methods I  
Chemistry:  
CHEM 403  General Chemistry I  4 
or CHEM 405  Chemical Principles for Engineers  
Mathematics:  
MATH 425 & MATH 426  Calculus I and Calculus II  8 
Select one of the following options: ^{2}  12  
Option A:  
MATH 525 & MATH 526  Linearity I and Linearity II ^{2}  
Option B:  
MATH 528  Multidimensional Calculus  
MATH 527  Differential Equations with Linear Algebra  
MATH 545  Introduction to Linear Algebra  
or MATH 645  Linear Algebra for Applications  
Computer Programming:  
CS 410P  Introduction to Scientific Programming/Python  4 
or IAM 550  Introduction to Engineering Computing  
Capstone: ^{3}  28  
PHYS 795 & PHYS 799  Independent Study and Thesis  
or INCO 790 & PHYS 799  Advanced Research Experience and Thesis  
or PHYS 798  Senior Project  
Total Credits  9096 
^{1}  Note that no physics course can satisfy these requirement for a physics major. The rationale behind this is that a course in physics does not broaden the education of a physics major. 
^{2}  The Department generally recommends MATH 645 Linear Algebra for Applications over MATH 545 Introduction to Linear Algebra for physics majors. 
^{3}  A capstone experience is required of all physics majors during their senior year. The Physics Department encourages students to write a senior thesis (PHYS 799 Thesis) for their capstone experience. Other options include independent study research projects (PHYS 795 Independent Study or INCO 590 Student Research Experience) or a special project as part of senior lab (PHYS 705 Experimental Physics II). All capstone experiences must be approved by the undergraduate committee during the student's penultimate semester. 
By the end of the spring semester of the sophomore year, a student must have a minimum grade of C in each 400 or 500level course specifically required for the B.S. degree and an overall gradepoint average of at least 2.33 in these courses in order to continue in the B.S. program.
Physics Electives
In the following table, "electives" include Discovery courses, writingintensive courses, physics electives, and freechoice electives. Note that physics electives can only be taken in the junior or senior year because of prerequisites, and are in general offered every other year.
Code  Title  Credits 

PHYS 708  Optics  4 
PHYS 710  Astrophysics I  4 
PHYS 712  Space Plasma Physics  4 
PHYS 718  Condensed Matter Physics  4 
PHYS 720  Nuclear Physics  4 
PHYS 764  General Relativity and Cosmology  4 
 Students will master the fundamentals of mechanics, electricity and magnetism, quantum mechanics, and thermodynamics.
 Students will have a solid understanding of calculus, differential equations, and linear algebra and be able to use mathematics to solve physics problems.
 Students will be able to solve physics problems using computational methods.
 Students will be proficient at taking measurements in a physics lab and analyzing measurements to draw valid conclusions.
 Students will be well prepared for graduate study in physics and related disciplines.
 Students will be well prepared for technical careers.
 Students will be able to present scientific ideas effectively in both written and oral form.