Physics Major
The Majors Physics Program is intended for students who wish to learn Physics as part of a general education, or combine physics with other disciplines. There are many options with this degree which include a career in medical physics, education, high technology, business, or science journalism. This program, combined with the proper electives, is suitable as pretraining for a professional degree in fields such as Architecture, Commerce, Education, Law and Medicine. The large number of electives will allow you to obtain significant background in another field; e.g. Computer Science, Applied Mathematics, Physical Geography, Oceanography, Geophysics or Geology. Some students may wish to take a double major which can be obtained by satisfying the degree requirements in two subjects. You may find it attractive to combine a Physics Major with a minor in another subject in Science, Commerce or the Faculty of Arts. Students wishing to enter the one year Secondary Teaching program in the Faculty of Education with a Physics Major should consult the Education section of the Calendar. They will find it to their advantage to have a "concentration" in one more secondary teaching field. There is also a dual degree program that will allow you to receive a BSc in Physics at the same time as a BEd. Please see the dual degree section for more details on this option.
The Science I program as well as the regular first year science stream are excellent entry points for this program. A coop option is also available. Students intending to continue in any physics or astronomy specialization should be competent in MATH and PHYS. It is advisable that a student entering any specialization in physics or astronomy have a minimum average of 60% in firstyear PHYS and 60% in firstyear MATH. To be promoted to third year in the program you must have better than the minimum passing grade in each of PHYS 200, 216, 219 and 229.
Below is a short description of the specialization. Please be aware the official requirements for the specialization are listed in the UBC calendar  please see the appropriate calendar section for more information. For information on first year registration please go to first year.
Please see also a combination of Physics Major with Minor from another subject.
Year 1  Terms 1 and 2  Description  Credits 

Physics 107, 108, 109 (or 117, 118, 119 or 101, 118, 119, 117 or Science I)^{1,2}  Enriched Physics I, Enriched Physics II and Enriched Experimental Physics  7 
CHEM 121 (111)^{2,3}  Structural Chemistry  4 
MATH 100level^{2,4}  Differential and Integral Calculus  6 (9) 
Communication requirement^{5,7}  6  
Electives^{6,7}  47  
Total Credits Year 1  30  
^{1}Advanced Credit or Placement in Physics are both excellent preparation but they are NOT a substitute for these first year Physics courses, which are prerequisities for all second year Physics courses. Students with AP credits should contact the Department for advice. Students without Physics 12 must take PHYS 100 prior to PHYS 101, PHYS 107 or PHYS 117. Students must take PHYS 117 in second year if they did not take it or PHYS 107 in first year. ^{2}Firstyear physics, biology, chemistry, and mathematics can be replaced by SCIE 001. ^{3}Students without Chemistry 12 must take CHEM 111 instead of CHEM 121. ^{4}One of MATH 100, 102, 104, 110, 180, 184, or 120 and one of MATH 101, 103, 105, 121. ^{5}A total of 6 credits of coursework is required to meet the Communications Requirement. ENGL 112 is recommended. For a full list of acceptable courses see Communication Requirement. ^{6}Students who intend to pursue a major in Physics will greatly benefit from spending some of their first year elective credits on advancing their math and computing skills early on, in order to be better prepared for more advanced courses. Courses in linear algebra and computing science are available to firstyear students from the math and CS departments respectively; a solid grounding in these topics early in the degree will help Physics major students get higher grades and learn more physics in subsequent courses, by avoiding having a first exposure to them concurrently with their application in physics classes. Physics major students thinking of doing coop in the future will particularly benefit from computing science courses, as these skills dramatically increase employability and success in job placements. ^{7}Electives must be taken to ensure that all Faculty of Science requirements are met:
Students without Biology 11 or 12 must take 3 credits of 100level BIOL. BIOL 111 or 121 are recommended. For students with Biology 11 or 12, at least 3 credits must be a science course in ASTR, ATSC, BIOL, EOSC, or GEOB. See the Biology Requirement for further details. Students interested in senior chemistry courses or who are planning to enter a career in teaching are reminded that they should take a second course of introductory chemistry. Some course alternatives have different credit value. The number of elective credits in each year is chosen to balance the total number of credits (i.e., make the yearly total equal to 30). Since the number of available elective credits in each year may not be a multiple of three, students are permitted to move elective credits between years. 
Year 2  Term 1  Description  Credits 

PHYS 200^{8}  Relativity and Quanta  4 
PHYS 219  Intermediate Experimental Physics I  2 
PHYS 210^{9}  Introduciton to Computational Physics  3 
MATH 200^{10,11}  Calculus III  3 
MATH 221^{10}  Matrix Algebra  3 
Electives^{7,8}  0 
Year 2  Term 2  Description  Credits 

PHYS 229  Intermediate Experimental Physics II  1 
PHYS 216^{8}  Intermediate Mechanics  3 
MATH 215  Elementary Differential Equations I  3 
Electives^{7,8}  8  
Total credits Year 2  30  
^{8}Students may opt to take PHYS 200 or PHYS 216 in third year, in order to take an additional 3 credits of electives in second year. ^{9}Computing skills at the level of PHYS 210 are required in the specialization. With written permission of an undergraduate physics and astronomy advisor, students who already have these skills may replace PHYS 210 with 3 credits of electives. ^{10}MATH 200 and MATH 221 should be taken in the first term since they are prerequisites for PHYS 216. In general it is best to take Math courses as soon as possible since they will make all upper level Physics courses easier. Please note that the requirements for MATH 221 allow first year students to take this course; it may benefit Physics majors students to take this or an equivalent linear algebra course in the first year of studies, to gain familiarity with this crucial topic as early as possible. ^{11}Students with sufficiently high grades in firstyear MATH may take MATH 217 (4 credits) and 2 additional credits of electives instead of MATH 200 and MATH 317. 
Year 3  Term 1^{12}  Description  Credits 

PHYS 309 (or 319 in 2^{nd} term)^{13}  Electrical Laboratory  3 
PHYS 304  Introduction to Quantum Mechanics  3 
PHYS 312  Introduction to Mathematical Physics  3 
MATH 317^{11,14}  Calculus IV  3 
Electives^{7,17}  3 
Year 3  Term 2  Description  Credits 

PHYS 203^{15}  Thermodynamics  4 
PHYS/ASTR 300 level and above^{13,16}  3  
Electives^{7,17}  8  
Total Credits Year 3  30  
^{12}Consultation with a Physics departmental advisor is recommended before entering third and fourth year. ^{13}Note it is possible to take both PHYS 309 and PHYS 319 since these are not credit excluded. If both are taken, the extra 3 credits can be used towards the upper level PHYS/ASTR electives. ^{14}MATH 317 may be postponed until Term 2. It is a prerequisite for PHYS 301 and a corequisite for PHYS 203. ^{15}CHEM 304 may replace PHYS 203. 
Year 4  Terms 1 and 2  Description  Credits 

PHYS 301  Electricity and Magnetism  3 
6 credits from PHYS 348, 409 and 420^{16,18}  Frontiers in Physics/Experimental Lab / Demonstrations  6 
PHYS/ASTR 300 level and above^{13,16,18}  6  
Electives^{7,17}  15  
Total Credits Year 4  30  
Total credits to graduate^{16}  120  
^{16}Physics Majors must take 9 credits of Physics or Astronomy electives in 3^{rd} and 4^{th} year. A list of suggestions is tabulated below. The courses on the right side of the table can only be taken in the fourth year because of prerequisite requirements. In the case of PHYS 401, 402, 473 and 474 you should seek approval from the Departmental Advisor and then the instructor. PHYS 314, 315, 318, 437, 438 are not offered every year. If you take both PHYS 319 and PHYS 309, one of them counts towards the lab requirement listed on the 3rd year curriculum and the other one can count towards the 9 credits upperlevel elective requirement. If you have more than 3 credits in PHYS 409 besides one of PHYS 348 or 420, the excess credits can be used towards these 9 credits. The PHYS 333, ASTR 333, and PHYS 490 cannot be used to fulfill this upperlevel selection requirement, but can be used to count as general upperlevel science electives. ^{17}When choosing electives keep in mind the following graduation requirements: You need a total of 72 credits in the faculty of Science and 30 of these must be in courses numbered 300 or above. You need a total of 48 credits in courses numbered 300 or above in any faculty. You need 12 credits (excluding ENGL credits used to satisfy the communication requirement) from the faculty of Arts. You also need an additional 9 credits from Arts or Science outside the field of the major (i.e. other than ASTR, MATH or PHYS) to satisfy Breadth Requirement. ^{18}Note it is possible to take more than 6 credits from PHYS 348, 409, 420 since these are not credits excluded. Excess credits can be used towards the 9 credits of PHYS/ASTR 300 level and above courses. Students interested in teaching are encouraged to consider PHYS 420. PHYS 420 is only offered every 2nd year starting 2012W. ^{19}Requirements related to these courses in the majors program have been revised several times in recent years. Students are reminded that they may follow any version of the program in effect during their years in the program. For example a student entering the Physics Major program in 2012 can complete the program as it appears in the 2012/13, the 2013/14, or 2014/15 calendar. 
Suggested Upper Level Physics / Astronomy Electives for Majors 

3^{rd} or 4^{th} Year 
4^{th} Year 

Course # 
Title 
Course # 
Title 
PHYS 305 
Introduction to Biophysics 
PHYS 350 
Applied Classical Mech. 
PHYS 306 
Mechanics 
PHYS 400 
Introduction to Elementary Particle Physics 
PHYS 314 
Fluids 
PHYS 401* 
Electromagnetic Theory 
PHYS 315 
Physics of Materials 
PHYS 402* 
Applications of Quantum Mechanics 
PHYS 318 
Acoustics 
PHYS 403 
Statistical Mechanics 
PHYS 404 
Physical Techniques in Diagnostic Medicine 
PHYS 407 
Introduction to General Relativity 
PHYS 405 
Radiation Biophysics 
PHYS 408 
Optics 
PHYS 438 
Zoological Physics 
PHYS 410 
Computational Physics 
ASTR 300 
Galaxies 
PHYS 473 
Applied Nuclear Physics 
ASTR 403 
Cosmology 
PHYS 474* 
Applied Solid State Physics 


ASTR 404 
Astronomical / Astrophysics Measurement 
ASTR 349 
Directed Research Project in Astronomy 
ASTR 406 
Highenergy Astrophysics 
PHYS 349 
Directed Research Project in Physics 
ASTR 407 
Planetary Science 
*Physics and Astronomy major students who are interested in taking this course, have the appropriate prerequisites and at least a 75% average on their physics and math courses, please contact the Undergraduate Program Coordinator at ugcoordATphas.ubc.ca to discuss registration in this course.