Physics (BS)

Arts and Sciences
Earth and Physical Sciences
HEGIS Number: 1902

The Online Bulletin is for information purposes only. Current students must complete the requirements as outlined in the York Bulletin as applicable.
Course Descriptions
Course descriptions can be found in the online PDF version of the Bulletin

Physics is the study of the matter and interactions that shape the universe and determine the properties and behavior of the natural world.

The physics program prepares majors for graduate study in physics or astronomy, as well as for professional schools of medicine, dentistry, and engineering. In particular, the pre-engineering track within physics prepares students for transfer to advanced undergraduate standing in engineering at City College, CUNY. The problem-solving skills physics degree recipients acquire also qualifies them for a variety of careers in industry including finance. We aim to ensure that students develop the skills and background to master the underlying physical principles of their discipline.

The physics discipline dedicates itself to making accessible a rigorous, high quality science education to a culturally and ethnically diverse population with widely varying degrees of science proficiency and preparation. We proudly provide research experiences for undergraduate physics majors through programs sponsored by the NIH, NSF, NASA, and other federal, State and City agencies.

Students interested in majoring in physics or pre-engineering should take Univ. Physics I (Physics 151) and its corequisite Calculus I (Math 121) as early as possible in their studies. Please come to the Dept. of Earth and Physical Sciences in Room 2F09 for proper advisement.

Medical Physics Option

Physics majors desiring the Medical Physics Option will follow the physics major course sequence and elect six credits of medical physics in the senior year. The medical physics electives are offered in conjunction with an affiliated medical center.

Pre-Medical / Pre-Dental Physics Major

Physics Majors who wish to follow the Pre-Medical or Pre-Dental Physics Sequence should complete Biology 201 and 202 (or the equivalent) and Organic Chemistry and follow the Physics Major sequence with the exception of the following courses: Mathematics 311, Physics 301, 441, and Physics Elective.

B.S. with Honors in Physics

Eligibility: A 300-level Physics course and a 3.0 average in all Physics courses. Approval by the Faculty of the Physics Discipline.

Requirements for Graduation with Honors:

  1. Successful completion of the Physics Major Discipline requirements and a 3.0 average in all Physics courses.
  2. Successful completion of 6 credits of 400-level courses in the Physics Discipline consisting of independent research under the supervision of a faculty member and successful presentation of a thesis to the faculty members of the Physics Discipline.
  3. Certification by the Faculty of the Physics Discipline.

Physics BS


Major Discipline Requirements*

PHYS117University Physics I 
PHYS113University Physics Laboratory I 
PHYS118University Physics II 
PHYS114Physics Laboratory II 
PHYS211Mechanics I 
PHYS241Modern Physics 
PHYS321Electricity and Magnetism I 
PHYS351Statistical Mechanics 
PHYS383Modern Physics Laboratory 
PHYS431Modern Optics 
PHYS441Quantum Mechanics and Atomic Physics 
CHEM111Principles of Chemistry II 3.5 
CHEM112Principles of Chemistry II Laboratory 1.5 
MATH122Analytical Geometry and Calculus II 
MATH221Analytical Geometry and Calculus III 
MATH223Differential Equations 
MATH333Linear Algebra 


Two courses at 400-level or higher 

*All physics majors take MATH 121, CHEM 108 and 109 to fulfill General Education requirements.