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Physics

It is part of our human nature to wonder about the universe around us.  It starts with questions like: What is stuff made of?  How does lightning make thunder?  Why is the sky blue?  Physics is where we go to find the answers.  The explanations we seek come from the evidence and arguments that are the discipline of physics.  But it’s in the experimental and theoretical explorations that lead to those explanations that you’ll find the excitement physicists thrive on.  With our physics minor, you’ll have the opportunity to share in that excitement as you delve into this fascinating field.

Understand why physics is the foundation of all sciences and engineering.

You’ll learn how physics forms the foundation of almost all branches of science and technology — how it has provided the microscopic basis for chemistry and stimulated important development in mathematics, for example.  It underpins all of engineering and forms the basis for the pure and applied sciences, including the life sciences.  

With a background in physics, you can pursue a number of scientific careers — university and government laboratory research, industrial research and development, applied science and engineering, biological and medical sciences, environmental research, and teaching at all levels.

Develop evidence-based and analytical skills.

The discipline of physics is rigorously analytical, and that’s an especially useful learning experience today.  Producing evidence and then arguing from that evidence is one of the most important life skills of the 21st century.  It’s a skill that can lead to many careers in science, and even more so, to some outstanding careers outside of the field of science.

The study of physics sharpens your ability to develop ideas, to think critically, and most important, to become more aware of the details.  This is as essential in the practice of law, in the launching of a start-up company, or in the development of quantum computers as it is in the study of cosmology.

Explore the exciting intersection of physics with other disciplines.

UNH has many years of teaching the interdisciplinary area of nanotechnology to upper level undergraduates and graduate students.  Want to train on an Atomic Force Microscope?  You can at UNH.   You’ll then be able to apply your skills in active research projects that pull in other disciplines.   

With the biology program, you can be involved in the imaging of Lyme Disease bacteria.  Together with forensic science, you can analyze gunshot residues.  Love the sound of music?  The physics department will instruct you in the physics of music and sound.  You’ll also gain hands-on experience in specially designed labs, where you’ll explore the physical origins, properties, and interactions of sounds.

Be a highly in-demand teacher.

Interested in sharing your knowledge of physics with others?  You’re fortunate because many schools throughout the U.S. are sorely in need of qualified physics teachers.  Our minor gives you a great launching point toward becoming qualified to teach physics to middle- and high-school students. 

With our Education Department's 4 + 1 Pre-Education Program, you can earn your Master of Science in Education with a fifth year (3 trimesters) of study and complete your teacher certification in one additional trimester.  The master’s degree is tuition-free with participation in the public school internship program.  Successful completion of all requirements will result in UNH’s recommendation to the State Department of Education for Connecticut certification.

 

  1. Minor