Step into an experimental field relevant to emerging technologies. Learn to make sense of life’s physical, chemical, and biological processes. Prepare to succeed in graduate school, or earn certification to teach physics at the middle grades and secondary levels.

From stealth technology to quantum cryptography, applications of physics have the potential to impact many technological advances in our modern world.

Tradition of excellence

Bring your love of physics to GU, where students once benefited from the only ion accelerator south of Champaign-Urbana. Today’s students conduct research in a quantum information lab. Recent graduates have received full tuition waivers at leading universities to pursue advanced studies in astrophysics, quantum optics, condensed matter, and more.

Graduate school preparation

A physics degree at GU equips you for success in a graduate school program.

Why GU

Science that informs faith; faith that informs science. Learn from professors whose Christian faith and science intertwine.

Work with advanced instrumentation. Gain valuable hands-on experience in quantum information and nanotech labs. Add research and presentation experience to your resume.

3/2 program.In addition to the BSE program, GU also offers a 3/2 dual-degree program with Washington University in which you:

1. Transfer to Wash U after 3 years at GU. 2. Receive a BA from GU after a year at Wash U. 3. Complete your BS in engineering after your second year at Wash U.

GU students who enroll in this engineering school boast a completion rate of 98%.

Basic principles of chemical reactions and descriptive chemistry are integrated in terms of atomic structure, bonding theory, molecular geometry, reaction rates, equilibrium, and thermodynamics. Meets the general education laboratory science requirement. (Three lecture hours and three lab hours per week.) (Offered fall semester.) Corequisite: CHEM 111L

This course introduces students to engineering. Students will study the history of engineering, explore various engineering disciplines and scientific principles behind engineering, engage in design and problem solving processes, and learn safety procedures. Students also practice decision-making, teamwork, and effective communication through key projects. Meets the general education foundation of liberal arts requirement.

The course introduces the fundamental concepts of scientific and engineering programming. Topics include algorithms and data types, control structures, functions, arrays, files, and the mechanics of running, testing, debugging and problem solving. A high-level language such as Python or C++ will be used. Offered spring semester.

Direct-current circuits; circuit elements; Kirchoffs Laws; loop and nodal analysis; network theorems; natural, forced, and complete circuit response; steady-state AC circuits including phasors; AC power; polyphase circuits; frequency response and introduction to computer simulation. Three hours lecture and two hours lab each week.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in ENGR 101 and PHYS 210. Offered spring semester.

The first course in the regular calculus sequence. Basic techniques of differentiation and integration are covered. Topics from Analytic Geometry are introduced. Meets the general education quantitative reasoning requirement.
Prerequisite: MATH 111 or equivalent background. (Offered fall semester.)

Techniques of integration, sequences and series, parametric equations, vector valued functions.
Prerequisite: MATH 115. (Offered spring semester.)

The differential and integral calculus of multi-variate functions, line and surface integrals, Green's Theorem, Divergence Theorem, Stokes' Theorem.
Prerequisite: MATH 116. (Offered fall semester.)

First-order differential equations, linear equations, and linear systems, power series solutions, Laplace Transforms.
Prerequisite: MATH 116. (Offered fall semester.)

A calculus-based introductory physics course that covers kinematics and Newtons laws of motion; conservation laws for momentum, energy, and angular momentum; torques and static equilibrium; and simple harmonic motion. Meets the general education laboratory science requirement. (Three hours lecture and two hours of lab per week.)
Corequisite: MATH 115, PHYS 200L

Continuation of PHYS 200 covering electric fields and forces, electric potential, resistors, capacitors and DC circuits; magnetic fields and forces, electromagnetic induction and inductors, electromagnetic waves and Maxwells equations; and geometrical and physical optics. (Three hours lecture and two hours of lab per week.)
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in PHYS 200. Corequisite: PHYS 210L. Offered: Spring semester.

The third semester of the introductory physics sequence as required by physics and engineering majors. Topics covered include introduction to relativity, quantum mechanics, thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, condensed matter, nuclear physics, the standard models of particle physics, the standard cosmological model, and new frontiers of physics. (Three hours lecture and two hours of lab per week.)
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in PHYS 210 Corequisite: PHYS 220L Offered: Fall semester.

An intermediate course that is basic for graduate work in physics. Topics covered include direct and alternating current circuits, static electric and magnetic fields, and Maxwell's equations. Three hours lecture per week.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in PHYS 210. Offered: Fall of even calendar years.

An intermediate course on quantum mechanics using matrix formalism and operator methods; quantum states of photons and electrons, measurement, angular momentum and rotation, two-particle systems and entanglement, time evolution, harmonic oscillator, wave mechanics in three dimension. Three hours lecture and three hours lab per week.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in PHYS 220. Corequisite: PHYS 324L. Offered: Fall semesters of odd calendar years.

PHY 405 Practicum Variable Credit
This course is for all physics students completing a BS degree. The student is given an opportunity to apply his/her physics training by working in business, industry, or in a research laboratory. For students who plan to attend graduate school, an on-campus practicum experience will be provided. Students taking PHY 405 are evaluated with a letter grade.

The motion of a particle and a system of particles as described by Newtonian mechanics are studied. Vector algebra and vector calculus are used. Velocity dependent forces, central forces, oscillatory motion, rigid body motion, and moving coordinate frames are typical topics.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in PHYS 220, MATH 217, and MATH 218. (Offered spring semester.)

A study of vector forces and their analysis, equilibrium of particles and of rigid bodies, structural analysis and internal forces, distributed forces, center of gravity and centroids.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in ENGR 101 and PHYS 200. Offered fall semester.

This course builds on concepts introduced in prior coursework in static systems. It considers the mathematical description of rigid bodies in motion under the action of forces, moments and couples, solving problems of kinematics and kinetics for particles and rigid bodies using energy, momentum, and angular momentum conservation laws. It also introduces Lagrangian and Hamiltonian methods.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in ENGR 250. Offered spring semester.

An introduction to the basic principles of theoretical chemistry with emphasis on thermodynamics and kinetics. (Three hours lecture and three hours lab per week.) Prerequisite: CHEM 112, MATH 115, and PHYS210. (Offered fall semester of even calendar years.) Corequisite: CHEM 321L.

A quantitative understanding of atomic, molecular, and nuclear physics is presented through the applications of introductory quantum mechanics. (Three hours lecture and three hours lab per week.)
Prerequisite: MATH 217, MATH 218, CIST 140, and PHYS 200. Corequisite: CHEM 322L. (Offered fall semester of odd calendar years.)

Introduction to the concept of energy and the laws governing the transfers and transformations of energy. Emphasis on thermodynamic properties and the first and second law analysis of systems and control volumes. Integration of these concepts into the analysis of basic power cycles is introduced.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in ENGR 240 and PHYS 220. Offered: Fall semester.

Equilibrium thermodynamics, the first law, equations of state, changes of state, the second law, criteria for spontaneity, electrochemistry, and applications to chemical and physical systems.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in PHYS 220. Offered: Irregularly

A culminating experience for majors. Student teams begin a system level design of a project (a nondisclosure agreement may be required). Projects are selected from a variety of topics. Students provide detailed schedules for building prototype systems and present periodic progress reports. During the course, students produce a technical specification, undergo several design reviews, and design a prototype system.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in ENGR 240 and ENGR 352. Offered: Fall semester.

Laboratory applications of upper level physics in one of Greenville's labs. Special emphasis will be given to developing skills to conduct experiments and use of instrumentation, automation, and data analysis.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in PHYS 220. Offered: Spring semester.

Introduction to research literature and exploration of new chemical frontiers. Reports on individual library research and discussion of them. Cross-Listed as BIOL 410. Meets the general education upper division writing intensive requirement.
Prerequisite: CHEM 301 and CHEM 310 or CHEM 322. (Offered every semester.)

A culminating experience for majors. Student teams begin a system level design of a project (a nondisclosure agreement may be required). Projects are selected from a variety of topics. Students provide detailed schedules for building prototype systems and present periodic progress reports. During the course, students produce a technical specification, undergo several design reviews, and design a prototype system.
Prerequisite: Grade of C- or higher in ENGR 240 and ENGR 352. Offered: Fall semester.

This course is designed to give the mathematics student his or her first serious encounter with mathematical systems. Elements of the theory of vector spaces are developed. The student gains experience in matrix algebra, vectors, and linear transformations. Meets the general education upper division writing intensive requirement.
Prerequisite: MATH 115. (Offered spring semester.)

Students are engaged in discussions on contemporary issues in physics and/or the issues related to the integration between faith and science. Written reports are required. This course is to be taken by all physics majors in either the junior or senior year.
Prerequisite: Attainment of junior standing. Cross-Listed as: ENGR 409. Offered: Every semester.

Treatment of probability applied to discrete and continuous distributions; tests of hypotheses; independence and correlation; sampling theory.
Prerequisite: MATH 217. (Offered spring semester of even calendar years.)

Includes an introduction to history of mathematics, particularly contributions of Greek scholars; study of Euclid 's elements; transition to Non-Euclidean geometrics developed by Gauss, Bolyai, Lobachevski, and Riemann; history of calculus and mathematical structures.
Prerequisite: MATH 217. (Offered spring semester of odd calendar years.)

Provides an experience in the uses of mathematics. Use and development of mathematical models will be considered. Topics will range from applications in the social sciences to physics and engineering. The choice of material will be based on current trends in mathematics applications and on students' needs.
Prerequisite: MATH 217, MATH 218 and MATH 312. (Offered spring semester of even calendar years.)

Introduces basic theory in the numerical solution of mathematical problems. Topics include nonlinear equations, systems of linear equations, interpolating polynomials, numerical differentiation, integration, and solution of differential equations.
Prerequisite: CIST 210, MATH 217, MATH 218 and MATH 312. (Offered spring semester of odd calendar years.)

Axiomatic treatment of selected algebraic structures, including rings, integral domains, fields and groups, including an introduction to number theory.
Prerequisite: MATH 312. (Offered fall semester of odd calendar years.)

This course is designed to give the mathematics student his or her first serious encounter with mathematical systems. Elements of the theory of vector spaces are developed. The student gains experience in matrix algebra, vectors, and linear transformations. Meets the general education upper division writing intensive requirement.
Prerequisite: MATH 115. (Offered spring semester.)

The language, fundamental concepts, and standard theorems of analysis are explored. The student learns to read the literature and investigates applications. Ideas from elementary calculus are revisited.
Prerequisite: MATH 217 and MATH 312. (Offered fall semester of even calendar years.)