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Department of Physics

Why Enroll in the UW Colleges?

We offer students the best possible start for their education. On the average, each of our physics classes has fewer than 20 students, allowing each student to receive personal attention from the instructor. Excellence in teaching is our main objective.

Why Study Physics?

The study of science branches into the life sciences (biology, zoology, and botany) and the physical sciences (geology, astronomy, chemistry, and physics). In order to understand biology you must understand how matter is put together, that is you must understand chemistry. In order to understand chemistry you must understand the nature of basic things such as motion, forces, energy, matter, light and the inside of atoms, that is you must understand physics. Thus, physics is more than just a part of physical science. It is the basic science. It is about the nature of everything in the universe. It is an organized way of conversing with nature. It is in everything you see, hear, smell, taste and touch. Physics is fun and it offers exciting opportunities for successful and rewarding careers. If you are interested in understanding the way the world works, from the subatomic particles and biological mechanisms to the blueness of the sky and the origin of the universe, then Physics is your field.

What Do We Offer?

Students can take the entire two-year sequence of required courses for a major at one of our campuses. This includes a major in physics, astronomy, engineering, or any combination of these fields. You will be well prepared before you transfer to any baccalaureate institution to finish your degree. Please consult with the physics instructor(s) and Student Affairs personnel at your campus for specific requirements at the baccalaureate institution where you plan to transfer. Of course, if you are not interested in a major in the field, we do offer challenging introductory courses that satisfy lab science requirements and give you a general overview of the discipline.

What Are the Job Options?

A course in physics can be the start of a career in science or an important building block for another job. Physics will give you a different, powerful, and beautiful way of looking at things, much different than any other discipline. It is this different way that employers value since it provides may possibilities for innovative solutions to problems.

Physics opens doors to opportunities in government, industry, schools, and private organizations, and the following is but a small set of such opportunities (from an AIP publication).