The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire's physics - applied physics emphasis bachelor's degree is designed for those interested in working in industrial and engineering environments. The growing major is rooted in applied, real-world learning, giving you countless opportunities to conduct experiments, solve problems and gain firsthand, professional experience prior to graduation.
Coursework throughout the program focuses on the up-and-coming technology areas of energy and nanotechnology and the career paths best suited for those fields. Through projects and experiments, you'll learn about the engineering design process, develop advanced laboratory techniques and gain knowledge of mathematical modeling. A required capstone research project will help you to enhance your presentation skills and develop post-graduate plans.
A portion of the degree is made up of course electives chosen by you, allowing you to study the topics that most interest you and align with your career goals. And because of the program's strong foundation in both physics and mathematics, students find they are well-prepared for a variety of jobs, particularly those related to engineering.
Our graduates go on to conduct research and laboratory experiments, analyze and interpret scientific data, adapt ideas and develop needed solutions. They also leave UW-Eau Claire in demand. Because the development of laser optics, miniaturized electronics, nuclear energy and medical instrumentation continues to evolve and grow, employers are regularly looking for individuals who understand — and know how to apply — physics.
Innovative facilities and equipment. While pursuing your degree in applied physics, you'll have direct access to outstanding academic facilities, such as an optics research lab, the Materials Science and Engineering Center, an electron microscopy lab, an electronics lab, a machine shop and the Hobbs Observatory. There, you can use state-of-the-art technology such as a 24-inch reflecting telescope, an atomic force microscope, a scanning tunneling electron microscope and an X-ray diffractometer.
Collaborative research opportunities. Conducting collaborative research with any of our dedicated faculty members in physics and astronomy is a hallmark of the department. These are not typical undergraduate experiences, which is exactly why we offer them. Whether you choose to study our solar system, renewable energy, robotics or condensed matter physics, your work could lead to publication in peer-reviewed journals and presentations at regional and national conferences.
Outside-the-classroom learning. UW-Eau Claire prides itself on offering students the chance to learn and refine their craft in the real world. Be a part of a service-learning project over spring break, mentor an international student majoring in physics, hear from international experts and speakers, study abroad in Scotland or attend one of the 200 universities that participate in the National Student Exchange program. Here, you'll quickly find endless opportunities are available to you.
Exceptional preparation. Graduates of our physics - applied physics emphasis degree leave UW-Eau Claire ready to hit the ground running. Thanks to the program's "learn by doing" approach, you'll be able to design experiments; use measurement technology, computational tools and statistical techniques to collect and analyze data; and use microcontrollers and electronic sensors to build devices to perform specific tasks — all before you even graduate.
Physics - applied physics emphasis program details
- Program length: four years
- Offered: in person
- Campus: Eau Claire
- This major requires a minor or certificate.
- Students majoring in this program may choose either a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or Bachelor of Science (BS) degree.
- Society of Physics Students
- Women & Gender Minorities in STEM
- Materials Research Society
- Sigma Pi Sigma
The applied physics major is an excellent choice for any career or further study requiring strong experimental, theoretical and calculation skills. This includes graduate programs in any number of STEM areas as well as architecture, medicine and law.
Our graduates go on to pursue successful careers in engineering, education, technology and government, making a positive impact wherever they go.
Where are physics - applied physics emphasis alumni now?
- Engineer, Carl Veiss
- Engineer, Asahi Kasie BioProcess
- Engineer technician, Hutchinson Technology
- Electrical engineer, 3M
The curriculum within the applied physics major includes courses in physics, mathematics, chemistry and computer science. Coursework will explore areas like classical mechanics, thermodynamics, electromagnetism, optics, electronic circuits, quantum physics, special relativity, differential equations, probability and mathematical statistics.
What classes do physics - applied physics emphasis majors take?
Your classes may cover topics like:
- Probability and mathematical statistics
- Computer programming
- Electromagnetic fields
- Theoretical mechanics
Learn more about the physics - applied physics emphasis major in the UWEC course catalog.
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