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Physics and Astronomy

**The information below differs from the print version of the CSULB Catalog. The units listed below for PHYS 560A are now properly listed as three units. Please browse here for a full list of differences between the print and online catalog. (08/16/11)**

Graduate Programs

Master of Science in Physics (code PHYSMS01)

Prerequisites

  • 1. A bachelor's degree with a major in physics; or
  • 2. A bachelor's degree with at least 24 units of upper division physics. (Students deficient in undergraduate preparation must take courses to remove these deficiencies without credit toward the degree at discretion of graduate advisor.

Requirements

  • Take all of the following:
    • PHYS 510 Graduate Mechanics (3)
    • PHYS 522 Statistical Physics (3)
    • PHYS 540A Graduate Electrodynamics I (3)
    • PHYS 550A Quantum Mechanics I (3)
    • PHYS 560A Mathematical Methods of Physics (3)
    • PHYS 695 Colloquium (1)
  • Take one of the following:
    • PHYS 545 Experimental Methods in Physics I (3)
    • PHYS 546 Experimental Methods in Physics II (3)

In addition, students may opt for one of two plans:

General Physics Plan

  • Take the following course:
    • PHYS 550B Quantum Mechanics II (3)

Take one of the following two choices:

1. Completion of at least 2 additional units of graduate-level PHYS courses, 6 units of PHYS 698, a written thesis approved by the student's thesis committee consisting of a thesis chair (a Physics/Astronomy faculty member) and at least two more members, one of which must be a member of the Department, and an oral presentation of the thesis research. Note: Students must be advanced to candidacy before enrolling in PHYS 698. As early as possible, in consultation with the thesis chair, choose a thesis committee.

2. With the permission of the Graduate committee, an additional 8 units of 500-level PHYS courses, and satisfactorily complete a comprehensive examination.

Computational Physics Plan

  • Take the following courses:
    • PHYS 550B Quantum Mechanics II (3)
    • PHYS 562 Computational Methods in Theoretical Physics (3)
  • Take 6 units of the following:
    • PHYS 698 Thesis (6)

A written thesis approved by the student's thesis committee consisting of a thesis chair (a Physics/Astronomy faculty member) and at least two more members, one of which must be a member of the Department, and an oral presentation of the thesis research.

Note: Students must be advanced to candidacy before enrolling in PHYS 698. As early as possible, a graduate student in consultation with the thesis chair should choose a thesis committee.

Advancement to Candidacy

  • 1. The regulations governing the master's degree are those in effect at the time of advancement to candidacy. Students must fulfill the University requirements for advancement to candidacy.
  • 2. A student must have a "B" average or better in six units of physics applicable toward the master's degree, of which at least three units are at the graduate level.
  • 3. Recognizing that effective organization and verbal communication of physics are a necessary part of a successful graduate program, the Department of Physics and Astronomy normally requires that a graduate student serve at least one semester as a teaching associate or a graduate assistant as part of the M.S. program. Exceptions may be granted by the Graduate Advisor.
  • 4. Approval of the degree program by the graduate advisor, the Department Chair, Associate Dean in the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.