Physics Programs

Physics Major

The program in physics is designed to familiarize students with the techniques of mathematical and experimental physics that would be useful to them in an industrial research or engineering position; in physics teaching; as a general preparation for more advanced graduate work in any of the varied fields of physics; or in such disciplines as astronomy, space science, biophysics, computer science, engineering, geophysics, medicine, law, and oceanography.

Upon successful completion of the undergraduate program, students receive a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in physics. Students are then prepared to enter graduate school or pursue employment in one of the many physics-related occupations.

To major in physics, 46 semester hours of specific physics courses, 16 semester hours of specific mathematics courses, and four semester hours of specific chemistry or biology courses are required. To strengthen and broaden the background of all Xavier students, a liberal arts core curriculum consisting of courses in history, literature, foreign language, philosophy, social sciences, fine arts, and theology is also a part of the program.

Freshman Year

First Semester Semester Hours Second Semester Semester Hours
PHYSICS 170
University Physics I
3 PHYSICS 172
University Physics II
3
PHYSICS 171
Explorations in Physics
1 PHYSICS 173
Explorations in Physics II
1
PHILOSOPHY 100
Ethics as Intro. to Philosophy
3 MATH 171
Calculus II
4
FOREIGN LANGUAGE
Elective
3 FOREIGN LANGUAGE
Elective
3
MATH 170
Calculus I
4 ENGLISH 101 or 115
English Composition or Rhetoric
3
    Computer Science (CSCI)
Elective
3
Total 14 Total 17

Sophomore Year

First Semester Semester Hours Second Semester Semester Hours
PHYSICS 242
Electronics I
3 PHYSICS 340
Modern Physics II
3
PHYSICS 243
Electronics I Lab
1 PHYSICS 331
Modern Physics II Lab
1
PHYSICS 330
Modern Physics I
3

PHILOSPHY 290
Theory of Knowledge

3
PHYSICS 331
Modern Physics I Lab
1 MATH 230
Differential Equations
3
MATH 220
Calculus III
4 FINE ARTS
Elective
3
THEOLOGY 111
Theological Foundations
3 HISTORY
Elective II
3
HISTORY
Elective I
3 CULTURAL DIVERSITY
Elective
1
Total 18 Total 17

Junior Year

First Semester Semester Hours Second Semester Semester Hours
PHYSICS 360
Electromagnetism I
3 PHYSICS 382
Thermodynamics
3
PHYSICS 350
Theoretical Mechanics
3 PHYSICS 364
Physical Optics
3
PHYSICS 355
Advanced Physics Lab
2 PHYSICS 365
Physical Optics Lab
1
MATH
Elective
3 LITERATURE
Elective
1
CHEMISTRY / BIOLOGY
Elective + Lab
4/5 THEOLOGY
Scrip/Hist or Christ Sys Elective
3
    PHYSICS, MATH or CSCI Elective* 3
Total 15/16 Total 16

Senior Year

First Semester Semester Hours Second Semester Semester Hours
PHYSICS 376
Quantum Mechanics I
3 PHYSICS 377
Quantum Mechanics II
3
PHYSICS 395
Physics Research
1 PHYSICS 398
Physics Thesis
1
PHYSICS
Elective
3 PHYSICS
Elective - Capstone
3
SOCIAL SCIENCE
Elective
3 SOCIAL SCIENCE
Elective
3
ENGLISH / CLAS / SPAN 205
Literature & the Moral Imagination
3 E/RS FOCUS
Elective
3
PHILOSOPHY
Elective
3 THEOLOGY
Ethics or Rel/Cult Elective
3
Total 16 Total 16