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Undergraduate Courses

Note: Courses highlighted in red are offered primarily to serve the needs of students who are not physics majors. These courses will not normally count toward fulfilling requirements for physics majors in KSU physics programs.

Form for Undergraduate Students to Enroll in Graduate Courses

Number and Credits

Title and Description

PHY 11030
3 Credits
Seven Ideas that Shook the Universe
Description of major revolutionary physical concepts and their implications for understanding the physical universe. Not counted toward physics major. Prerequisite: none. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered every term.)
PHY 12000
1 Credit
Introductory Physics Seminar
To provide a nurturing course for new physics majors, ideally to be taken in their first semester as majors. The course includes a journal club component, informational talks by industrial physicists and training in a select group of essential skills and tools for future work in the physics program. Prerequisite: none. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters.)
PHY 12111
3 Credits
Physics for Health Technologies*
Basic Physics applied to health technologies: measurement techniques, force and motion of solids and fluids, energy, heat, wave phenomena, electricity.  Students taking this course should be in a health technologies major.  Prerequisite: none.
PHY 12201
3 Credits
Technical Physics I*
Introduction to principles of physics: mechanics. Two-hour lecture/recitation and two-hour laboratory weekly. Prerequisite: MATH 11010. Pre/corequisite MATH 11022 or MATH 12001 or MATH 19001.
PHY 12202
4 Credits
Technical Physics II*
Introduction to principles of physics: fluids, thermodynamics, electricity and magnetism. Three-hour lecture/recitation and two-hour laboratory weekly. Prerequisite: PHY 12201.
PHY 13001
4 Credits
General College Physics I
Principles of mechanics, heat and sound. Three-hour lecture, one-hour recitation. Corequisite: PHY 13021. Pre/corequisite MATH 11022 or 12001 or 12002 or 12021. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters and Summer I term.)
PHY 13002
4 Credits
General College Physics II
Principles of electricity and magnetism, optics and modern physics. Three-hour lecture and one-hour recitation weekly. Prerequisite: PHY 13001 or 23101. Corequisite: PHY 13022. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters and Summer III term.)
PHY 13011
2 Credits
College Physics I
Principles of classical physics, primarily mechanics. Three-hour lecture and one-hour recitation weekly. This is a flexibly scheduled course that meets concurrently with PHY 13001 for the first half of a regular term. Corequisite: PHY 13021. Pre/corequisite: MATH 11022 or 12001 or 12002 or 12012 or 12021. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core.
PHY 13012
2 Credits
College Physics II
Principles of classical physics, primarily electricity and magnetism. Three-hour lecture and one-hour recitation weekly. This is a flexibly scheduled course that meets concurrently with PHY 13002 for the first half of a regular term. Prerequisite: PHY 13001 or 13011 or 23101. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters and Summer III term.)
PHY 13021
1 Credit
General College Physics Laboratory I
Introductory lab to accompany PHY 13001 or 13011. Corequisite: PHY 13001 or PHY 13011. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters and Summer I term.)
PHY 13022
1 Credit
General College Physics Laboratory II
Introductory lab to accompany PHY 13002 or 13012. Corequisite: PHY 13002 or PHY 13012. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters and Summer III term.)
PHY 20095
1-3 Credits
Special Topics
(Repeatable for credit) Topic announced when scheduled. Prerequisite: none.
PHY 21040
3 Credits
Physics in Entertainment and the Arts
Descriptive introduction to physics underlying selected forms of art and entertainment. Examples are drawn from music, visual arts and communications media. Not counted toward requirements for major in physics. Prerequisite: none. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters and Summer II term.)
PHY 21041
1 Credit
Physics in Entertainment and the Arts Laboratory
Laboratory component of PHY 21040. Two-hour laboratory weekly. Pre/corequisite: PHY 21040. Special fee: $20 flat fee--subject to change. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters and Summer II term.)
PHY 21430
3 Credits
Frontiers in Astronomy
Modern description of astrophysical observations, the results of these observations and the physical principles based on them. Not counted toward requirements for major in physics. Prerequisite: none. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered every term.)
PHY 21431
1 credit
Frontiers in Astronomy Laboratory
Laboratory component of PHY 21430. Pre/corequisite: PHY 21430. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core. (Normally offered every term.)
PHY 22564
3 Credits
Introduction to Materials Physics
Survey of mechanical and electronic properties of materials with application in science and technology. Metals, semiconductors, ceramics, polymers and liquid crystals and other special materials will be addressed. Prerequisite: PHY 23102. (Normally offered in Spring semesters of even-numbered years.)
PHY 23101
5 Credits
General University Physics I
Principles of mechanics, heat and sound at calculus level. Four-hour lecture/recitation and three-hour lab weekly. Pre/corequisite: MATH 12002. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters.)
PHY 23102
5 Credits
General University Physics II
Principles of electricity, magnetism, light and modern physics at calculus level. Four-hour lecture/recitation and three-hour lab weekly. Prerequisites: PHY 13001 or PHY 23101. Pre/corequisite: MATH 12003. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters.)
PHY 30020
2 Credits
Intermediate Physics Laboratory
(Repeatable for credit) Experiments in classical and modern physics are selected to accompany and to supplement junior-level physics courses. Prerequisite: PHY 36001 and 10 hours of additional physics courses. This course may be used to satisfy the writing-intensive course requirement with approval of major department. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters.)
PHY 30095
1-3 Credits
Special Topics
(Repeatable for credit) Topic announced when scheduled. Prerequisite: permission.
PHY 32511
4 Credits
Electronics
"Hands-on" course to give the student a working knowledge of analog electronics and of AC and DC circuits typically used by the scientist. Prerequisites: PHY 13002 or PHY 23102; and MATH 12002. (Normally offered in Fall semesters.)
PHY 34000
3 Credits
Cosmology
This course will provide a quantitative introduction to modern cosmology, from the Big Bang to the formation of the first stars. Subjects include the evolution of the geometry and temperature of the universe, its composition and select aspects of general relativity. Prerequisite: PHY 36001. (Normally offered in Spring semesters of odd-numbered years.)
PHY 35101
4 Credits
Classical Mechanics
Modern description of mechanics including both Lagrangian and Hamilton formulations, with applications to central-force motion, coupled oscillations, rigid body motion and motion in non-inertial reference frames. Prerequisites: PHY 23102 and MATH 32052. (Normally offered in Fall semesters.)
PHY 36001
3 Credits
Introductory Modern Physics
Special theory of relativity, Rutherford-Bohr model of atom, quantization of light, matter waves, Schrödinger equation, hydrogen atom, electron spin, multi-electron atoms. Prerequisites: MATH 12003 and PHY 23102. (Normally offered in Spring semesters.)
PHY 36002
3 Credits
Applications of Modern Physics
Survey of applications of twentieth century physics. Topics include molecular bonding, conducting and insulating solids, degenerate matter, quantum condensates, subatomic and sub-nuclear particle physics, cosmology. Prerequisite: PHY 36001. (Normally offered in Fall semesters.)
PHY 40020
2 Credits
Advanced Physics Laboratory
(Repeatable for credit) Advanced experiments in classical and modern physics are selected to accompany and to supplement senior-level physics courses. Prerequisite: PHY 30020. Pre-/corequisite: 6 hours of 40000-level physics courses. This course may be used to satisfy the writing-intensive course requirement with approval of major department. (Normally offered in Fall and Spring semesters.)
PHY 40060
1-3 Credits
Physical Literature
Study of current or topical literature. Prerequisite: Permission.
PHY 40092
1-3 Credits
Internship in Physics
(Repeatable for credit.) Supervised capstone experience in physics at a national laboratory, a research university, in industry or at a local research site. No more than 3 credit hours may be applied toward the major electives for physics majors. S/U graded. Prerequisite: Permission.  This course may be used to satisfy the Experiential Learning Requirement. Internship Application Form
PHY 40095
1-3 Credits
Special Topics
(Repeatable for credit) Topic announced when scheduled. Prerequisite: Permission.
PHY 40096
1-6 Credits
Individual Investigation
(Repeatable for credit) Individual projects for Physics majors. IP grade permissible. Prerequisite: 20 credit hours of physics, special approval of department chairperson. Individual Investigation Contract
PHY 40099
1-10 Credits
Senior Honors Thesis
Thesis for departmental, general or university honors must be 1-10 hours with continuous registration throughout the senior year beginning in the summer prior to the senior year. Students taking this course must consult with their department and the Honors College and receive approval prior to the first semester of the senior year. IP grade permissible. Prerequisites: Honors senior standing and special approval.
PHY 40195
1-3 Credits
Special Topics
(Repeatable for credit) Topic announced when scheduled. Prerequisite: Permission.
PHY 41010
3 credits
Biophotonics
(Cross-listed with BSCI 41010 and BSCI 51010 and CHEM 41010 and CHEM 51010 and PHY 51010) Interdisciplinary overview of the basics of biophotonics; application of biophotonic techniques to probe biological samples. Introduction to the foundations of optics and photonics and how the molecular structure of organic molecules translates into unique photonic properties and targeting in biological cells or tissue. Preparation of fluorescent materials, advanced spectroscopy and cell visualization using regular and confocal fluorescence microscopy. Prerequisite: special approval.
PHY 44600
3 Credits
Introduction to Biological Physics
Introduces ideas essential to physical understanding of biological systems. Topics include: introduction to molecular components of the cell; statistical mechanics and transport in biological systems; selected topics in biophysics. Prerequisite: PHY 23102. (Normally offered in Fall semesters of odd-numbered years.)
PHY 44802
3 Credits
Astrophysics
Galactic structure, stellar formation and evolution, origin of the elements (or nucleosynthesis), nonoptical astronomies, and description of various cosmological theories. Prerequisite: MATH 12003. (Normally offered in Spring semesters of even-numbered years.)
PHY 45201
4 Credits
Electromagnetic Theory
Properties of electric and magnetic fields developed by vector methods. Treatment of static fields in vacuum and matter. Theory of classical electromagnetic fields with emphasis on dynamic fields. Prerequisite: MATH 32052 and PHY 23102. (Normally offered in Fall semesters.)
PHY 45301
3 Credits
Thermal Physics
An introduction to thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, with applications in material science and engineering. Prerequisite: PHY 36001. (Normally offered in Spring semesters.)
PHY 45401
4 Credits
Mathematical Methods in Physics
Consolidation of vector analysis, curvilinear coordinate systems, tensors, matrix algebra, vector spaces, common groups in physics, calculus of residues, contour integration, methods for differential equations in physics; additional topics important for physics selected from special functions, integral equations, calculus of variations. Prerequisite: MATH 32052. (Normally offered in Fall semesters.)
PHY 45403
3 Credits
Data Analysis and Computational Physics Techniques
Study of uncertainties in physical measurements. Data reduction and error analysis techniques. Monte Carlo simulation method. Least-squares fits to data. Basic computational physics techniques. Prerequisites: MATH 12003 and PHY 23102. (Normally offered in Spring semesters of odd-numbered years.)
PHY 45501
3 Credits
Electromagnetic Waves and Modern Optics
Interactions between light and matter from both a macroscopic and microscopic perspective; producing and controlling light; devices and spectroscopic techniques based on modern optics. Prerequisite: PHY 45201. (Normally offered in Spring semesters of even-numbered years.)
PHY 46101
4 Credits
Quantum Mechanics
Systematic introduction to the principles and solution techniques of quantum mechanics, including the Schrödinger equation in one and three dimensions.  Topic include:  angular momentum formalism, introductory Dirac notation and vector formalism, intrinsic spin, identical particle systems, and perturbation theory. Prerequisites: PHY 36001. Pre/corequisite: MATH 32052. (Normally offered in Spring semesters.)
PHY 46301
  4 Credits
Introduction to Nuclear and Particle Physics
(Cross-listed with PHY 56301) Introduction to nuclear and particle physics including particle detectors and accelerators, experimental techniques, nuclear fission and fusion, nuclear reactors, medical applications, and connections to astrophysics and cosmology. Prerequisite: PHY 36001. Pre/corequisite: MATH 32052. (Normally offered in Spring semesters of even-numbered years.)
PHY 46401
3 Credits
Introduction to Solid State Physics
Fundamental unifying concepts and experimental techniques needed to understand thermal, electrical and optical properties of ions and electrons in solids. Special topics of current research. Prerequisites: PHY 36002. (Normally offered in Spring semesters of odd-numbered years.)
 

Possible Mathematics Prerequisites

MATH 11010
3 Credits
Algebra for Calculus
Study of elementary functions and graphs, including polynomial, exponential and logarithmic functions, complex numbers; conic sections; arithmetic and geometric sequences. No credit earned for this course if student earned credit for MATH 11011 or 12001.  Prerequisite: minimum C (2.000) grade in MATH 00007 or MATH 00024 or MATH 11009; or minimum 40 on ALEKS upper-level assessment; or ALEKS math assessment minimum score of 55. This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core.
MATH 11022
  3 Credits
Trigonometry
Solution of triangles, trigonometric equations and identities. Students who have not taken a previous mathematics course at Kent State must see an academic advisor for placement. Prerequisite:  minimum C (2.000) grade in MATH 11010; or ALEKS math upper-level minimum score of 50; or ALEKS math single assessment minimum score of 67.  This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core.
MATH 12001
  5 Credits
Algebra and Trigonometry
Introduction to algebra and trigonometry including functions and graphs; polynomial and rational functions; exponential and logarithmic functions; angles and the trigonometric functions; graphs of trigonometric functions; trigonometric identities; inverse circular functions and trigonometric equations; and applications of trigonometry.  No credit earned for this course if student earned credit for MATH 11010 or MATH 11022.  Prerequisite:  minimum B (3.000) grade in MATH 00024; or ALEKS placement score of 50-69.  This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core.
MATH 12002
5 Credits
Analytic Geometry and Calculus I
Concepts of limit, continuity and derivative, and the indefinite and definite integral for functions of one real variable. Maximization, related rates, fundamental theorem of calculus. No credit earned for this course if student earned credit for MATH 12011 and 12012. Prerequisite:  minimum C (2.000) grade in MATH 11022 or MATH 12001; or ALEKS math upper-level minimum score 70; or ALEKS math single assessment minimum score of 78.   This course may be used to satisfy the Kent Core.
MATH 12003
5 Credits
Analytic Geometry and Calculus II
Continued study of techniques and applications of integration; trigonometric, logarithmic and exponential functions; polar coordinates; vectors; parametric equations; sequences and series. Prerequisite: MATH 12002 or MATH 12012.
MATH 32051
4 Credits
Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences I
Mathematics background beyond Calculus I and II for upper-division courses in the physical sciences. Topics include complex numbers and arithmetic, linear algebra, partial differentiation and multiple integrals. Prerequisite: MATH 12003.
MATH 32052
4 Credits
Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences II
Additional mathematics background for upper-division courses in the physical sciences. Topics include vector analysis, Fourier series and transforms, ordinary differential equations and partial differential equations. Prerequisite: MATH 32051; or MATH 21001 and MATH 22005.
*Courses offered only at Kent State University Regional Campuses.

Note: Courses highlighted in red are offered primarily to serve the needs of students who are not physics majors. These courses will not normally count toward fulfilling requirements for a physics major.

For descriptions of other courses not listed here, see the University Catalog.