Degree Plans | Trinity University
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Physics degree plans are available to help students chart their paths toward a B.S. degree, a B.A. degree, a double major in engineering science and physics, a B.A. as a pre-med student, or a teacher certification in physics.

For a brief description of each course please visit the Courses of Study Bulletin.

Degree Plan for the B.S. in Physics

38 hours in PHYS; 15 hours in MATH; 3 hours in CSCI

First Year: FallFirst Year: Spring
PHYS 1311: Intro. to Mechanics1PHYS 1312: Intro to Electromagnetism & Optics1
PHYS 1111: Intro. Physics LabPHYS 1112: Intermediate Physics Lab
MATH 1311: Calc. IMATH 1312: Calc. II
Sophomore Year: FallSophomore Year: Spring
PHYS 3323: Intro. to Modern PhysicsPHYS 3322: Class. Mech. & Nonlinear Dynamics
PHYS 2131: Soph. Experimental Physics IPHYS 2132: Soph. Experimental Physics II
MATH 2321: Calc. IIIPHYS 3321: Stat. Mech. & Thermo.(or PHYS 3325)
CSCI 1320: Principles of Computer Science I MATH 3316: Diff. Eqs. & Linear Algebra2
Junior Year: FallJunior Year: Spring
PHYS 3335: Electromagnetic FieldsPHYS 3325: Optical Physics (or PHYS 3321)
PHYS 3333: Quantum Physics IPHYS 3336: Adv. Theor. Physics (or MATH 3357)
PHYS 4121: Photonics & Electronics I (or 4131)PHYS 4122: Photonics & Electronics II (or 4132)
PHYS 2094: Physics SeminarPHYS 2094: Physics Seminar
Senior Year: FallSenior Year: Spring
PHYS 4131: Adv. Exp. Physics I (or 4121)PHYS 4132: Adv. Exp. Physics II (or 4122)
PHYS 4395: Senior ProjectMATH 3357: Partial Diff. Eqs. (or PHYS 3336)
PHYS 2094: Physics SeminarPHYS 2094: Physics Seminar

1Students may substitute PHYS 1309 for PHYS 1311, and/or PHYS 1310 for PHYS 1312.
2Students may opt to take both MATH 3323 & 3336 instead of MATH 3316.

Senior Thesis students will add PHYS 4396 and must complete 41 hours in Physics.
Honors Thesis students take PHYS 3398, PHYS 4398 and PHYS 4399 instead of PHYS 4395 and PHYS 4396, and must complete 44 hours in Physics.
Engineering Science majors considering a second major in physics should consult with Dennis Ugolini, Chair, Department of Physics & Astronomy, 210-999-7890, dugolini@trinity.edu.

Download a B.S. degree plan here. (PDF)

Degree Plan for the B.A. in Physics

First Year: FallFirst Year: Spring
PHYS 1311: Intro. to Mechanics1PHYS 1312: Intro to Electromagnetism & Optics1
PHYS 1111: Intro. Physics LabPHYS 1112: Intermediate Physics Lab
MATH 1311L Calc. IMATH 1312: Calc. II
CSCI 1320: Principles of Algorithm Design IPHYS 2094: Physics Seminar
Sophomore Year: FallSophomore Year: Spring
PHYS 3323: Intro. to Modern PhysicsPHYS 3322: Class. Mech. & Nonlinear Dynamics
PHYS 2131: Soph. Experimental Physics IPHYS 2132: Soph. Experimental Physics II
MATH 2321: Calc. IIIPHYS 3321: Stat. Mech. & Thermo. (or PHYS Elective)2
PHYS 2094: Physics Seminar MATH 3316: Diff. Eqs. & Linear Algebra3
Junior Year: FallJunior Year: Spring
PHYS 3335: Electromagnetic FieldsPHYS Elective
PHYS 4121: Photonics & Electronics I or
PHYS 4131: Adv. Exp. Phys. I
PHYS Elective
PHYS ElectivePHYS 2094: Physics Seminar
PHYS 2094: Physics Seminar 

1Students may substitute PHYS 1309 for PHYS 1311, and/or PHYS 1310 for PHYS 1312.
2Students must complete a total of 7 hours of PHYS Electives, including two courses from the following list: PHYS 4122: Photonics & Electronics II; PHYS 4132:Advanced Experimental Physics II; PHYS 3325: Optical Physics; PHYS 3333: Quantum Physics I; PHYS 4395: Senior Project. 3Students may opt to take both MATH 3323 & 3336 instead of MATH 3316.

Engineering Science majors considering a second major in physics should consult with Dennis Ugolini, Chair, Department of Physics & Astronomy, 210-999-7890, dugolini@trinity.edu.

Download a B.A. degree plan here. (PDF)

Degree Plan for Engineering Science & Physics Double Majors

Engineering Science majors can earn a second major in physics by taking 12 additional house beyond the engineering science requirements.

These hours include:

  • PHYS 3323: Introduction to Modern Physics (fall semester of sophomore or junior year)
  • PHYS 3335: Electromagnetic Fields (fall semester of junior or senior year, often taken as Engineering Science Elective anyway)
  • ONE of these three options:
    • Two of the following four alternate-year courses:
      • PHYS 4121: Photonics & Electronics Lab I (Fall 2013)
      • PHYS 4122: Photonics & Electronics Lab II (Spring 2014)
      • PHYS 4131: Advanced Experimental Physics I (Fall 2014)
      • PHYS 4132: Advanced Experimental Physics II (Spring 2015)
    • PHYS 3325 = Optics
    • PHYS 3333 = Quantum Mechanics I (fall semester)
  • 3 or 4 additional hours of any course(s) taught by the Department of Physics & Astronomy (3 hours if the student takes 3325 or 3333, 4 hours if the student chooses two alternate-year courses).

Physics Minor for Engineering Science Majors

Engineering Science majors can earn a minor in physics by taking one additional courses beyond their Engineering Science requirements:

  • PHYS 3323: Introduction to Modern Physics (fall semester of sophomore or junior year)

We would like to hear from all students who have an interest in pursuing either the double-major or minor option. It would be particularly valuable to know who is currently interested, so that we can anticipate and resolve any scheduling conflicts. Contact Dennis Ugolini, Chair, Department of Physics & Astronomy, 210-999-7890, dugolini@trinity.edu.

Download an engineering science and physics double major degree plan here. (PDF)

Degree Plan for the B.A. in Physics for Pre-Med Students

First Year: FallFirst Year: Spring
BIOL 1311 & 1111 (Bio I)CHEM 1300 (Intro Chem)
GNED 1300 (First-Year Seminar)ENGL 1302 (Writing Workshop)
MATH 1311L Calc. IMATH 1312: Calc. II
PHYS 1311/1309 & 1111 (Intro I)PHYS 1312/1310 & 1112 (Intro II)
PSYC 1300
Sophomore Year: FallSophomore Year: Spring
CHEM 1318 & 1118 (Gen. Chem.)BIOL 1312 & 1211 (Bio II)
MATH 2321: Calc. IIICHEM 2319 & 2119 (O-Chem I)
PHYS 3323 & 2131 (Modern & Lab)MATH 3336 (DE & Lin-Alg)
PHYS 2094 (Seminar)PHYS 2094 (Seminar)
SOCI 13xx (Sociology)PHYS 2132 (Soph. Lab)
CC Elective x3xxCC Elective x3xx
Junior Year: FallJunior Year: Spring
BIOL 34xx (Elective – e.g. Genetics)CHEM 3330 & 2130 (Biochem I & lab)
CHEM 2320 & 2220 (O-Chem II)PHYS 3321* (Thermo or Phys. Elective)
MATH 1320 (Statistics)PHYS 3322 (Classical)
PHYS 3325* (optics)CC Elective x3xx
PHYS 2094: Physics SeminarCC Elective x3xx
CC Elective x3xx

Take MCAT during summer after junior year.

Senior Year: FallSenior Year: Spring
BIOL x4xx (Elective)CSCI x3xx (or computational physics)
PHYS 3335 (Electromagnetism)PHYS 4131 (adv. lab)
PHYS x3xx* (Elective)PHYS x3xx* (Elective)
CC Elective x3xxCC Elective x3xx
CC Elective x3xxCC Elective x3xx
Elective x1xx

Courses that could be taken as physics electives include PHYS 4122 (photonics & electronics II), PHYS 4132 (adv. Experimental II), PHYS 3333 (Quantum physics), PHYS 4395 (Senior Project).

For more information, contact Dennis Ugolini, Dept. Chair, at dugolini@trinity.edu.

Download a B.A. degree plan for pre-med students here. (PDF)

Teacher Certification in Physics

Students completing either the B.A. or B.S. physics major have two options to receive certification to teach physics in grades 8-12 in Texas through Trinity’s Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program.

Students can pursue:

  1. The Grades 8-12 Physics/Mathematics certification, which would enable a graduate to teach physics and mathematics
  2. The Grades 8-12 Physical Science certification, which would enable a graduate to teach physics as well as chemistry and 8th grade general science (this would require coursework in chemistry and geosciences in addition to the physics major).

Both options require undergraduate education coursework as preparation for entry into the MAT program and to fulfill state requirements.

Students who complete Trinity’s 5-year Teacher Education Program will earn both a Bachelor’s degree in Physics and a Master of Arts in Teaching as well as teacher certification. For more information and specific requirements, including middle school and elementary science teaching opportunities as well, visit the Education Department.