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Undergraduate Physics at The Ohio State University
Required Courses for Physics Majors
Bachelor of Science in Physics
The B.S. in Physics is a degree conferred by the College of Arts and Science. It is a
degree which prepares a student for either direct employment after graduation, or in the
pursuit of an advanced degree.
The B.S. requirements are composed of a core, which all physics students must take, and a
set of technical and other electives chosen arranged in six
possible options depending on the interests of the student.
The total required credit hours is 191.
Core Requirements
 Required Physics: 51 hours. This is a minimum, as most options require additional
physics courses.
 13123; 26123;295; 416; 555; 596; 621; 631; 616
 Required Math: 27 hours
 Calculus and Analytic Geometry:
151152153254
OR 161162263 (accelerated sequence)
 Vector Analysis:
513: Vector Analysis for Engineers  focuses on applications of vector algebra. 3 credit hours
OR 551: Vector Analysis  focuses on vector operations and applications. 5 credit hours
 Differential Equations:
415: Ordinary and Partial Differential Equations. 4 credit hours
 Math  Physics Double Majors:
Take H520 and H521 instead of 513 and 415
 Prerequisite Courses: 4 hours
 CS&E 202 (prerequisite for Physics 416)
 College requirements: 70 hours. Assumes dropacourse and double counting of writing
requirement.
 There are a total of 70 hours of GEC required. More infomration
on GEC requirements can be found at the College of Arts and Sciences website under GEC's for Bachelor of Science. The current link is
here
 An important note: some options have required GEC courses.
See the table below.
 Technical and other electives: 43 hours
 Distributed between technical and free electives, depending on which
option plan AF is chosen  see table below.
Suggested Courses
These courses are not required, but they're great classes to take if you're looking to strengthen your math
skills or take an extra course.
 Math 514: Complex variables  introducton to complex variables, analytic functions, complex integral theorems,
power series, residues, and conformal mapping. 3 credit hours.
 Math 580/581: Abstract Algebra Elementary number theory, group theory, vector spaces, linear transformations, and
field theory.
Summary of Option RequirementsMajor in Physics
Option 
Purpose 
Additional Required Physics 
Required GEC (required by this option, but count towards GEC) 
Required Technical Electives 
Free Electives 
A 
Advanced Physics 
28 hours: 622;632633;664; 656657; 517 

Math 568 
12 hours 
B 
Physical, Mathematical and Engineering Sciences 
12 hours: 632; 656; 517 

Math 568 plus 16 hours (see these notes) 
12 hours 
C 
Biophysics & Biomedical Physics 
4 hours: 517 or 622 or 632 or 656 
Chem 121 or H201; Bio 113 or H115 
24 hours(see these notes) 
15 hours 
D 
PreMed 
none 
Bio 113114 
40 hours(see these notes) 
3 hours 
E 
Secondary Education Physics certification 
5 hours: 670 
Bio 113; Chem 121 
25 hours(see these notes) 
13 hours 
F 
Personalized 
4 hours: 517 or 622 or 632 or 656 

18 hours(see these notes) 
21 hours 
OPTION A
ADVANCED PHYSICS
This option is designed for those intending graduate level (Ph.D.)
studies in physics. It provides an excellent preparation for graduate
school in physics.
 Additional Required Physics (28 hours): 622; 632 633; 664; 656
657;
517
 Required Technical Electives (3 hours): Math 568 (OR Math 571)
 Free Electives: (12 hours)
Students planning to attend graduate school in physics should consider
taking one or more Physics 780.xx classes as part of their free
electives.
OPTION B
PHYSICAL, MATHEMATICAL, AND ENGINEERING SCIENCES
This option is designed for physics majors who have a strong interest in
some other area of the physical sciences, engineering, or mathematics.
It might be appropriate, for example, for a double major including one
of these other areas. Students completing this option are prepared to
pursue physics related areas, or to enter the job market with skills in
engineering or other sciences.
 Additional Required Physics (12 hours): 632; 656; 517
 Required Technical Electives (19 hours): Math 568 (OR Math 571) 3 credit hours.
 Notes on additional technical electives: A total of 16 hours must be selected from courses at or above the
200
level in any of the following departments. These courses may not
``double count" toward the GEC nor toward the mathematics requirements
in the physics core curriculum. The selection must be coherent and must
be approved by the Undergraduate Studies Committee (USC).
 Physics
 Astronomy
 Mathematics
 Chemistry
 Geology
 Statistics
 Computer and Information Science
 Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering
 Chemical Engineering
 Civil Engineering
 Electrical Engineering
 Industrial and Systems Engineering
 Materials Science and Engineering
 Mechanical Engineering
 Nuclear Engineering
 Free Electives: (12 hours)
OPTION C
BIOPHYSICS AND BIOMEDICAL PHYSICS
This option is designed for physics majors who have an interest in
biophysics or biomedical physics. It is NOT appropriate as a pre
medical curriculum (see option D).
 Additional Required Physics (4 hours): 517 or 622 or 632 or 656
 GEC courses: Students are required to take the following courses,
which
may be counted toward the GEC requirements:
Chemistry 121 (or H201)
Biology 113 (or H115)
 Required Technical Electives (24 hours):
 Chemistry 122 123 or H202 203 (10 hours)
 Chemistry 251 252 (6 hours)
 In addition, a total of at least 8 hours must be selected from
courses at or above the 200 level in any of the following departments. The
course selection must be coherent and must be approved by the
Undergraduate Studies Committee.
 Biochemistry
 Molecular Genetics
 Microbiology
 Evolution, Ecology, and Organismal Biology
 Biomedical Engineering
 Radiology
 Plant Biology
 Free Electives: (15 hours)
OPTION D
PRE MED OPTION
This option is designed for those intending to attend medical school.
It satisfies all of the medical school admission requirements, when
combined with the required physics and math courses in the physics core
curriculum. (Contact the premed adviser in the College of Arts and
Sciences for more detailed information.)
 Additional Required Physics: none
 GEC courses: Students are required to take the following courses,
which may be counted toward the GEC requirements:
 Notes on Required Technical Electives (40 hours):
 Molecular Genetics 500 (OR Biochemistry 511)(5 hours)
 Chemistry 251 252 253 (9 hours)
 Chemistry 121 122 123 (15 hours)
 Chemistry 254 255 (6 hours)
 Free Electives (3 hours):
OPTION E
SECONDARY EDUCATION: PHYSICS CERTIFICATION
This option is designed for those seeking secondary level certification
in physics (i.e., to be a high school teacher). It has been designed to
satisfy College of Education Master of Education (Physics Certification)
curriculum. If you are interested in pursuing this option, contact the
College of Education for further information.
 Additional Required Physics (5 hours): 670
 GEC courses: Students are required to take the following courses,
which
may be counted toward the GEC requirements:
 Biology 113 (5 hours)
 Chemistry 121 (5 hours)
 Notes on Required Technical Electives (25 hours):
 Chemistry 122123 (10 hours)
 Geology 110 or Geology 122 (5 hours)
 Astronomy 291 (5 hours)
 Geography 520 (5 hours)
 Free Electives (13 hours)
OPTION F
PERSONALIZED PROGRAM OPTION
This option is designed for those with special interests not covered in
options A E. The program of technical electives could include courses of
study outside of the Colleges of Mathematical and Physical Sciences and
of Engineering, such as meteorology, economics, history of science, or
primary education.
 Additional Required Physics (4 hours): 517 or 622 or 632 or 656
 Notes on Required Technical Electives (18 hours):
Notes on Required Technical Electives (18 hours): These must form a
coherent set of courses in a particular area or related areas of
study, and must be approved by the Undergraduate Studies Committee.
Courses utilized in pursuit of a minor, major, or dual degree can
count towards this requirement.
 Technical Electives must be 200 level or above.

