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The Department of Physics offers a combined dual-degree program, which allows a student to earn both a B.S. in Physics and M.S. in Phyiscs degrees in 5 years (4+1). As outlined in the Academic Catalog, several courses and multiple credit hours will be applied toward both the B.S. and M.S. program requirements. Student complete a B.S. Degree in four years and during the fourth year, take up to 12 gradute credit hours that will count toward a M.S. degree. During the fifth year, students will be a graduate student and will be eligible for either a Gradute Teaching Assistantship (GTA) or a Graduate Research Assistantship (GRA) that providues a full tuition waiver and approximately a $13,600 stipend during the academic year. GTAs help teach introductory laboratories and support teaching activities in the department. GRAs support externally sponsored research of faculty members.
Any student in the Physics BS program may petition to enter the 5 Year Physics B.S.+M.S. program during the semester upon completing 60 semester hours of the model curriculum with a 3.2 average, including PHY 2400, 2410, 2420; and obtaining a 3.3 average in required physics and math courses taken to date. This petition would normally occur during the second semester of the Junior year or earlier and must occur before the Senior year. The petition must be approved by the Physics Department Graduate Studies Committee and the Physics Department Chair and be forwarded to the Graduate School for final approval and admission to the degree program. The Graduate Studies Committee and/or the Chair may consult a petitioner’s former instructors regarding suitability if they choose. The admission to the program will normally be at the beginning of subsequent semester after approval (i.e. fall semester of the Senior year). An intending student must then seek advising each term to make sure they are following the necessary curriculum to eventually complete the program.
View Bachelor of Science/Master of Science in Physics program information, degree requirements, and graduation planning strategy in the Academic Catalog.
A 3.0 overall GPA and a 3.0 GPA in required physics courses is required to remain in the program. Normal graduate school probation rules apply.
Advising: Upon admission to the program, academic advising and permission to register is necessary each term. (This is due to the close sequencing of courses that is necessary to meet the 5 year timeline.)
Students are eligible for financial aid based upon their enrollment status. Because participating students remain undergraduates through the completion of the bachelor’s degree, they will be eligible for undergraduate financial aid through this period. Students will become eligible for graduate forms of financial aid—including Graduate Tuition Scholarships (tuition wavier) and GRAs/GTAs/GAs—when they become regularly-admitted graduate students after the completion of the bachelor’s degree.
Reversion to the 4 year B.S. degree occurs if the student does not enroll in the necessary graduate courses within 2 years following completion of the Physics B.S. requirements. In this case, PHY6000 or PHY7000 level courses may count as elective credits toward the B.S. degree but not toward the curricular requirements for the B.S. If reversion occurs and the student subsequently is accepted into the Physics M.S., any graduate credits applied to the Physics B.S. cannot count toward the 30 semester credits required for the Physics M.S. degree.