The Bachelor of Science in Physics

Total Course Requirements for the Bachelor's Degree: 120 units

See "Requirements for the Bachelor's Degree" in the University Catalog for complete details on general degree requirements. A minimum of 40 units, including those required for the major, must be upper division.

A suggested Major Academic Plan (MAP) has been prepared to help students meet all graduation requirements within four years. Please request a plan from your major advisor or view it and other current advising information on the CSU, Chico Web.

General Education Requirements: 48 units

See "General Education Requirements" in the University Catalog and the Class Schedule for the most current information on General Education Requirements and course offerings. The course requirements marked below with an asterisk (*) may also be applied toward General Education.

Physics majors may meet the Breadth Area B2 requirement by completing BIOL 151.

Option in General Physics

HIST 130 may be used to fulfill Breadth Area C1, C2, or C3 requirements; POLS 155 may be used to fulfill any one of the Breadth Area D1, D2, or D3 requirements; and HCSV 451 may be used to fulfill Area E requirements.

Cultural Diversity Course Requirements: 6 units

See "Cultural Diversity" in the University Catalog. Most courses taken to satisfy these requirements may also apply to General Education.

American Institutions Requirement: 6 units

See the "American Institutions Requirement" under "Bachelor's Degree Requirements." This requirement is normally fulfilled by completing HIST 130 and POLS 155. Courses used to satisfy this requirement do not apply to General Education.

Literacy Requirement:

See "Mathematics and Writing Requirements" in the University Catalog. Writing proficiency in the major is a graduation requirement and may be demonstrated through satisfactory completion of a course in your major which has been designated as the Writing Proficiency (WP) course for the semester in which you take the course. Students who earn below a C- are required to repeat the course and earn a C- or better to receive WP credit. See the Class Schedule for the designated WP courses for each semester. You must pass ENGL 130 (or its equivalent) with a C- or better before you may register for a WP course.

Course Requirements for the Major: 70-81 units

The following courses, or their approved transfer equivalents, are required of all candidates for this degree.

Major Core Program: 46 units

Lower-Division Requirements: 36 units

9 courses required:

CHEM 111 General Chemistry 4.0 FS *
Prerequisites: Second-year high school algebra; one year high school chemistry. (One year of high school physics and one year of high school mathematics past Algebra II are recommended.)
CHEM 112 General Chemistry 4.0 FS
Prerequisites: CHEM 111.
MATH 120 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 4.0 FS *
Prerequisites: Completion of ELM requirement; both MATH 118 and MATH 119 (or high school equivalent); a score that meets department guidelines on a department administered calculus readiness exam.
MATH 121 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 4.0 FS
Prerequisites: MATH 120.
MATH 220 Analytic Geometry and Calculus 4.0 FS
Prerequisites: MATH 121.
MATH 260 Elem Differential Equations 4.0 FS
Prerequisites: MATH 121.
PHYS 204A Mechanics 4.0 FS *
Prerequisites: High school physics or faculty permission. Concurrent enrollment in or prior completion of MATH 121 (second semester of calculus) or equivalent.
PHYS 204B Electricity and Magnetism 4.0 FS
Prerequisites: MATH 121, PHYS 204A with a grade of C- or higher.
PHYS 204C Heat/Wave Motion/Sound/Light 4.0 FS
Prerequisites: MATH 121, PHYS 204A with a grade of C- or higher.

Upper-Division Requirements: 10 units

4 courses required:

PHYS 300A Modern Physics I 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: PHYS 204A, PHYS 204B, PHYS 204C, or PHYS 202A and PHYS 202B and calculus with faculty permission.
PHYS 300B Modern Physics II 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: PHYS 300A.
PHYS 427 Advanced Laboratory 3.0 FA WP
Prerequisites: ENGL 130 (or its equivalent) with a grade of C- or higher, PHYS 300B.
PHYS 491 Physics Seminar 1.0 SP
Prerequisites: Upper-division standing in physics.

Major Option Course Requirements: 24-35 units

The following courses, or their approved transfer equivalents, are required dependent upon the option chosen. Students must select one of the following options for completion of the major course requirements.

The Option in Professional Physics: 24-25 units

This option is for students who intend to pursue graduate study in physics or related fields or who plan to enter careers in technical fields.

Option Core: 9 units

3 courses required:

MATH 361 Boundary Value/Partial Dif Eqs 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: MATH 260.
PHYS 301A Analytical Mechanics 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: MATH 260, PHYS 204A, PHYS 204B, PHYS 204C.
PHYS 302A Electricity and Magnetism 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: MATH 260, PHYS 204A, PHYS 204B, PHYS 204C.

Advising Pattern Course Requirements: 15-16 units

The following courses, or their approved transfer equivalents, are required dependent upon the advising pattern chosen. Students must select one of the following advising patterns to complete the Option in Professional Physics and major course requirements.

Advanced Study Pattern: 15 units

This option pattern is for students intending to pursue graduate study in physics or related fields. This is also suited to many technical careers.

5 courses required:

PHYS 301B Analytical Mechanics 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: PHYS 301A.
PHYS 302B Electricity and Magnetism 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: PHYS 302A or faculty permission.
PHYS 415 Thermal Physics 3.0 S2
Prerequisites: MATH 361, PHYS 300A.
PHYS 435A Quantum Mechanics 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: MATH 361, PHYS 300A.
PHYS 435B Quantum Mechanics 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: PHYS 435A.

Applied Physics Pattern: 16 units

This option pattern is for students intending to pursue careers in applied physics, optics, telecommunications, or related fields.

6 courses required:

MECH 210 Materials Science/Engineering 3.0 FS
Prerequisites: PHYS 204A; CHEM 111.
EECE 211 Linear Circuits I 3.0 FS
Prerequisites: MATH 121, PHYS 204B.
EECE 211L Linear Circuits I Activity 1.0 FS
Corequisites: EECE 211.
PHYS 250 Computer-Asst Problem-Solving 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: PHYS 204A, PHYS 204B. No previous computer experience necessary.
PHYS 450 Optics 3.0 SP
Prerequisites: PHYS 204A, PHYS 204B, PHYS 204C.

This course is also offered as EECE 450.

PHYS 451 Lasers and Their Applications 3.0 FA
Prerequisites: PHYS 204C. Recommended: PHYS 450.

This course is also offered as EECE 451.

The Option in General Physics: 35 units

This option fulfills all requirements for the Single Subject Teaching Credential in Science with a Concentration in Physics and a supplementary authorization in a second science. This option is also excellent preparation for students considering physics-related interdisciplinary fields. Students who choose this option should consult with their major advisor.

5 courses required:

BIOL 151 Prin of Cell and Molec Biology 4.0 FS
Prerequisites: Recommend CHEM 111 or concurrent enrollment.
BIOL 152 Prin Ecol, Evol, Org Biology 4.0 FS
Prerequisites: BIOL 151; recommend CHEM 112 or concurrent enrollment.
GEOS 102 Physical Geology 3.0 FS *
Prerequisites: High school chemistry or physics is recommended; students with no previous science courses are advised to enroll in GEOS 101. No college credit for those who have passed GEOS 101.
GEOS 300 Earth System Science 3.0 FA WP
Prerequisites: ENGL 130 (or its equivalent) with a grade of C- or higher; CHEM 107 or equivalent; PHYS 202A, PHYS 202B.
PHYS 489T Internship in Physics Teaching 3.0 FS
Prerequisites: PHYS 300B and faculty permission.

6 units required:

Any upper-division course in physics (except PHYS 489P and PHYS 489T) with approval of the credential advisor.

Breadth Requirements: 12 units

12 units required:

Any non-General Education courses in Chemistry (CHEM), Biology (BIOL), or Geoscience (GEOS). All 12 units must be selected from one department.

Electives Requirement:

To complete the total units required for the bachelor's degree, select additional elective courses from the total University offerings. You should consult with an advisor regarding the selection of courses which will provide breadth to your University experience and possibly apply to a supportive second major or minor.

Grading Requirement:

All courses taken to fulfill major course requirements must be taken for a letter grade except those courses specified by the department as Credit/No Credit grading only.

Advising Requirement:

Advising is mandatory for all majors in this degree program. Consult your undergraduate advisor for specific information.