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About the Physics Program

What is Physics?

  • Physics is not Engineering
  • Physics is not Philosophy
  • Physics is the most fundamental of the sciences
  • The goal of physics is to understand the physical world (universe) around us and to understand how we know what we think we know 

About the UHCL Physics Program

  • UHCL's physics program grew out the UHCL Physical Sciences: Space Science Program
  • Focus on Experimental, Theoretical and Computational Physics
  • Students can specialize in Cosmology, Astrophysics, Neutrino Physics, Biophysics, Applied Physics, Nanophysics, Condensed Matter Physics or Materials Science 

History of Physics at UHCL

  • Physical Science program was established in 1975 after the founding of UHCL
  • Originally a combination of astronomy, chemistry, geology and physics but eventually lost concentrations in chemistry and geology
  • Physical Science BS redeveloped to prepare students for Teacher Certification in 2003
  • Physical Science MS replaced by a physics MS in 2004
  • Physics BS initiated in 2009

What We Offer

  • Physics MS - enhances the background of practicing engineers and prepares students for Ph.D. work in physics or Astronomy
  • Physics MS Sub-Plan in Technical Management - to prepare students for careers in managing technical projects and people
  • Collaborative PhD with UH - Allows students to complete a PhD in physics. Some students can do this while working with NASA
  • Physics BS - designed to prepare students for technical careers in Engineering, Physics or Space Science
  • Physics BS Sub-Plan in Engineering – designed specifically to prepare undergraduate students for careers in engineering and applied physics based on ABET standards
  • Physics BS Sub-Plan in Computational Physics – designed to provide students with a background in physics and computer sciences necessary for advanced computational research


  • Biophysics Research Lab
  • Computational Physics Research Lab
  • Applied Physics Research Lab
  • HPC Computing Cluster
  • Modern Physics Lab

BS in Physics

  • Prepares students for technical careers in areas such as engineering and computing
  • Prepares students for advanced study in Physics and Space Science

MS in physics

  • Prepare students for PhD level work
  • Enhance the knowledge base of practicing engineers
  • Provide students with advanced research experience


  • Standard Physics Core
  • Advanced Electives (GR, QFT, Plasma physics, Special Topics)
  • Capstone - Thesis and Non-thesis options