# Requirements for a Major or Minor in Physics

The Physics Department offers programs leading to a B.S., an A.B. or a minor in Physics. Students planning to attend graduate school in physics or engineering will typically pursue a B.S. degree. Students interested in careers in medicine, law, finance, or other areas will benefit from any of the programs, but they may find that the A.B. or the minor allows more time to pursue other degrees or interests. The first 5 courses taken for the B.S. and the A.B. are the same, so it is not necessary to decide between the two degrees until at least the end of the 2nd year.

Any student contemplating becoming a physics major or minor is strongly encouraged to consult with the Director of Undergraduate Studies in Physics as early as possible.

https://schedule.georgetown.edu/course-renumbering-crosswalk/

Note:Effective Fall 2023, all main campus courses have been renumbered using a new 4-digit numbering system.

**Requirements for a B.S. in Physics**

- 2101 (Mechanics) or 2051
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 1350 (Calculus I)

- 2102 (Electromagnetic Phenomena) or 2052
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 1360 (Calculus II)

- 2103 (Relativity and Quantum Physics)
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 2370 (Multivariable Calculus)

- 2104 (Modern Experimental Physics)
- 2105 (Mathematical and Computational Methods)
- 3101 (Intermediate Mechanics)
- 3102 (Intermediate Electricity and Magnetism)
- 3103 (Quantum Mechanics)
- 3104 (Statistical Physics)
- 4998-4999 (Independent Research; 3 credits)
- Physics elective: 2002-3701 or >= 4202
- Any approved physics or math/science course

Students considering the B.S. major are strongly encouraged to begin the major during their freshman year; however, with careful planning, it is possible to complete the B.S. starting in the first semester of sophomore year. Typical schedules for various situations and printable requirement checklists can be found on the Planning Your Physics or Biological Physics Major page.

Note: Students earning the B.S. in Physics **are exempt** from the College Social Science General Education Requirement.

**Requirements for an A.B. in Physics**

- 2101 (Mechanics) or 2051
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 1350 (Calculus I)

- 2102 (Electromagnetic Phenomena) or 2052
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 1360 (Calculus II)

- 2103 (Relativity and Quantum Physics)
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 2370 (Multivariable Calculus)

- 2104 (Modern Experimental Physics)
- 155 (Mathematical and Computational Methods)
- 3101 or 3102 or 3103 or 3104
- Physics elective: 2002-3701 or >= 4202 or >= 4202
- Physics elective: >= 2002
- Any approved physics or math/science course
- Any approved physics or math/science course

Students considering the A.B. major are encouraged to begin the major during their freshman year to allow the greatest flexibility; however, it is straightforward to complete an A.B. starting in the first semester of sophomore year. Typical schedules for various situations and requirement checklists can be found on the Planning Your Physics or Biological Physics Major page.

**Departmental Honors**

The faculty may award Honors in Physics to Physics or Biological Physics majors who have performed exceptionally well both in coursework and in independent research. Students who are awarded Honors in Physics typically have a GPA in physics lecture courses of 3.7 or better. Students must also have exhibited excellence in independent research (including at least six credits of research coursework) and must have presented their work in written and oral forms to the faculty. To be eligible for consideration, a physics or biological physics major must have completed at least 4 upper-level physics lecture courses (PHYS 2002-3701 or >= 4202), including at least two courses from PHYS 3101, 3102, 3103, and 3104.

**Requirements for a Minor in Physics**

A minor in physics consists of the first four courses of the core sequence plus one additional physics course, as follows:

- 2101 (Mechanics)
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 1350 (Calculus I)

- 2102 (Electromagnetic Phenomena)
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 1360 (Calculus II)

- 2103 (Relativity and Quantum Physics)
- Co- or Pre-requisite: MATH 2370 (Multivariable Calculus)

- 2104 (Modern Physics and its Experimental Methods)
- One additional physics course (preapproved PHYS-2105 or higher)

Alternates for these courses may be approved on a case-by-case basis.