The Homer L. Dodge Department of Physics and Astronomy has a long tradition of educating scientists, engineers, and teachers who have achieved distinguished careers as researchers and leaders in industry and education.

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You can find the most up-to-date information about our programs and courses in the OU General Catalog.

Engineering Physics, M.S.

The Engineering Physics master's degree is offered as either a thesis or non-thesis program through the Gallogly College of Engineering in partnership with our department. Every student will be assigned an advisory committee who will determine the specific requirements within the guidelines set by these colleges and the career study goals of the student.

Physics, M.S.

The Physics master's degree may be based on a thesis and its defense, or it may be based on passing the departmental qualifying exams or the general exam (which includes giving an oral presentation). In both of these cases, you must be previously enrolled as a master's student. A thesis is required for students wishing to obtain a master's in Physics with an emphasis in Astronomy.

Qualifier | Courses |
---|---|

| Free attempts on any exam. |

| PHYS 5013 Math Methods |

| Free attempt on any exam not yet taken. |

| PHYS 5163 Statistical Mechanics |

| Required to take CSM and EM exams |

| PHYS 5583 Electrodynamics II |

| Required to take any two exams |

| PHYS 5403 Quantum Mechanics II |

| Must have attempted all exams once (including Astrophysics Exam) |

| Student must complete General Exam for candidacy (a.k.a. “Specialist Exam”) before the first semester of their fourth year. |

Qualifier | Courses |
---|---|

| Free attempts on any exam. |

| PHYS 5013 Math Methods |

| Free attempt on any exam not yet taken. |

| PHYS 5163 Statistical Mechanics |

| Required to take CSM and QM exams |

| PHYS 5583 Electrodynamics II |

| Required to take any two exams |

| Graduate elective |

| Must have attempted all exams once. |

| Student must complete General Exam for candidacy (a.k.a. “Specialist Exam”) before the first semester of their fourth year. |

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: ASTR 4303 or permission of instructor. High-energy radiation processes in astronomy: synchrotron radiation, bremsstrahlung, inverse Compton-effect. New wavebands of observation, UV, X-ray and gamma-ray astronomy. Radioastronomy: supernova remnants, pulsars, neutron stars. Radiogalaxies, active galactic nuclei, quasars. Theories of the origin of cosmic rays. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: ASTR 3113 or ASTR 4303 or permission of instructor. Basic properties of stars. Review of observational tools for extragalactic work. Stellar content and interstellar medium in normal galaxies. Introduction to the theory of Big Bang cosmology. Comparison of observational data to cosmological predictions. The extragalactic distance scale and the age of the universe. Large scale structure: galaxy clusters and superclusters. Active galaxies -- radio galaxies and quasars. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: ASTR 4303 or permission of instructor. Local thermodynamic equilibrium. Radiative transfer, continuous absorption coefficient and model stellar atmospheres. Atomic and molecular spectroscopy and the quantitative analysis of stellar spectra. Atomic processes and departures from local thermodynamic equilibrium. Extended and expanding atmospheres, novae, supernovae. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: ASTR 4303 or permission of instructor. Evolution and energy balance of stars including gravitational attraction, nucleosynthesis, radiative and convective energy, transport and equilibrium, construction of stellar models for pre-main sequence and main sequence stars, and the theory of giants and white dwarfs. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: ASTR 4303 or permission. Processes in low-density media are explored, including the physics relevant to emission line objects such as HII and HI regions, molecular clouds, and active galaxies. Techniques for deriving chemical abundances are explored, as are interstellar absorption by gas and dust and radiation transfer. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: ASTR 2513 and ASTR 3103. Techniques of multiwavelength observational astronomy. Includes time and coordinates, physics of astronomical ccds, telescopes, photometry, extinction correction, technical feasibility calculations, optical spectroscopy, and x-ray astronomy. Introductions to gamma-ray, infrared, UV radio astronomy. No student may earn credit for both ASTR 4523 and ASTR 5523. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: permission of instructor. May be repeated with change of subject matter; maximum credit nine hours. A research seminar devoted to the study of specialized topics in astronomy and astrophysics. Topics selected will reflect the interest of the instructor and students. (Irreg.)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: graduate standing and permission of department. May be repeated; maximum credit twelve hours. Directed readings and/or literature reviews under the direction of a faculty member. (F, Sp, Su)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: Graduate standing or permission of instructor. May be repeated; maximum credit nine hours. Special topics or seminar course for content not currently offered in regularly scheduled courses. May include library and/or laboratory research and field projects. (Irreg.)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and permission of instructor. May be repeated; maximum credit nine hours. Contracted independent study for a topic not currently offered in regularly scheduled courses. Independent study may include library and/or laboratory research and field projects. (Irreg.)

**0 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: Graduate standing. The course is an introduction to research in general as well as specific research done within the department. It will familiarize students with departmental procedures, improve their teaching of Physics, and convey the expectations and demands of a career in Physics or Astronomy. (F)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: graduate standing. Orthogonal transformations and tensor analysis; partial differential equations and special functions; Green's functions; perturbation theory; calculus of variations; theory of complex variables; integral definition of special functions. (F)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 3053 or equivalent. Hamilton's principle, Lagrange's equations, mechanics of particles and rigid bodies, Hamilton's equations, canonical transformations, Poisson brackets, action-angle variables. (F)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 4153 or equivalent. Classical and quantum statistical mechanics, fluctuations, thermodynamics, ideal gases, phase equilibrium and transitions, Bose-Einstein and Fermi-Dirac statistics, blackbody radiation, Einstein-Debye model, electrons in metals, critical exponents, spin models. (Sp)

**3 Credit Hours**

(Slashlisted with PHYS 4213) Prerequisite: PHYS 4803; graduate standing. Basic nuclear structure, nuclear models, radioactivity, nuclear reactions. Particle interactions and families, quark model, weak decays of quarks and leptons. No student may earn credit for both PHYS 4213 and PHYS 5213. (F)

**3 Credit Hours**

(Slashlisted with PHYS 4223) Prerequisite: Graduate standing. Geometrical optics; optical systems; optical aberrations; electromagnetic optics; diffraction theory; Fourier optics; interference; optical coherence and statistical properties of light; advanced topics such as, e.g., lasers and fiber optics. No student may earn credit for both PHYS 4223 and PHYS 5223. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

(Slashlisted with PHYS 4243) Prerequisite: PHYS 4803; graduate standing. Crystal structure, electrons in simple metals, electron band theory, semiconductors, superconductivity, phonons. No student may earn credit for both PHYS 4243 and PHYS 5243. (Sp)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 4803 or equivalent. Topics in nonrelativistic quantum mechanics including the Heisenberg and Schrodinger pictures, Dirac formalism, angular momentum, bound states of spherically symmetric potentials, spin and angular momentum coupling, density matrix, 1d potential scattering. (Sp)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 5393. Time-independent perturbation theory, time-dependent perturbation theory, electromagnetic interactions, potential scattering, symmetry and statistics, multiparticle systems, relativistic quantum mechanics including Klein-Gordon and Dirac equation. (F)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 4183 or equivalent. Electrostatics; Poisson equation; solution via Green's functions; ponderable media; magnetism and Ampere's law; Faraday's law; Maxwell equations, solution via potentials; gauge fixing; advanced and retarded Green's functions; causality. (Sp)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 5573. Electromagnetic waves and radiation; scattering and diffraction; special relativity and relativistic electrodynamics; radiation by moving charges. (F)

**3 Credit Hours**

(Slashlisted with PHYS 4813) Prerequisite: Graduate standing and PHYS 4803. Hydrogen atom: fine structure, hyperfine structure, and external field effects; helium and many-electron atoms; two-level atom: rotating wave approximation, Rabi oscillation, and Bloch sphere; atom interferometry; broadening mechanisms; saturation spectroscopy; photon echoes. No student may earn credit for both PHYS 4813 and PHYS 5813. (Sp)

**1-2 Credit Hours**

1 to 2 hours. Prerequisite: admission to candidacy for degree of Master of Natural Science. (F, Sp, Su)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: graduate standing and permission of department. May be repeated; maximum credit twelve hours. Directed readings and/or literature reviews under the direction of a faculty member. (F, Sp, Su)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: permission. May be repeated with change of subject matter; maximum credit for master's degree six hours, for doctor's degree 12 hours. (F, Sp, Su)

**2-9 Credit Hours**

Variable enrollment, two to nine hours; maximum credit applicable toward degree, four hours. (F, Sp, Su)

**1-4 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: 12 hours of physics, permission. May be repeated with change of subject matter; maximum credit for a master's degree four hours, for a doctor's degree ten hours. (F, Sp, Su)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 5213, PHYS 5403 or equivalents. The theory and phenomenology of the "standard model" of particle physics which encompasses the electro-weak and strong interactions. Topics will include: symmetries, groups and conservation laws; bound states, quarkonium; Feynman diagrams, QED; QCD; weak interactions; gauge theories. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 4243, PHYS 5403, or equivalents. The physics of metals, semiconductors and insulators. Free electron theory, crystal structure and phonons, electron band theory, semiclassical model, applications to electronic and optical properties of solids, effects of magnetic fields. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: Graduate standing and PHYS 5403 (QMII), PHYS 5813 (AMOI), or equivalent. Beyond the two-level atom approximation: effects such as lambda system, STIRAP, dark states, and slow light; Doppler-free spectroscopy; optical pumping; collective atomic effects; laser cooling; Bose-Einstein condensates; electronic wave functions of atoms and molecules: variational principle, Hartee-Fock, and configuration interaction; molecular interaction potentials; interaction of light and molecules. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 5013, PHYS 5583. The mathematical and physical basis for the relativistic theory of gravitation; the principle of equivalence; tensor analysis; Einstein's field equations; tests of general relativity; gravitational collapse; cosmology; toward a quantum theory of gravity. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: PHYS 5403. Canonical quantization of scalar and spinor fields; perturbation theory and Feynman diagrams; renormalization; path integral formulation; renormalization group; gauge fields with selected applications to QED, electro-weak theory and QCD. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: graduate standing and PHYS 6433. Path integral quantization; renormalization; renormalization group equations; gauge theories of strong and electroweak interactions. (F)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: Graduate standing, PHYS 5393, PHYS 5403, PHYS 5573, and PHYS 5813, or equivalent; Recommended - PHYS 5223. This course introduces students to advanced topics in quantum optics, with reference to both historic and current state-of-the-art developments. Students will be introduced to core concepts such as quantum noise, phase-space, atom-light interactions, entanglement, and open systems. Students will learn how to apply these theoretical concepts to experimental systems that study the generation and manipulation of quantum states of light. (Irreg.)

**3 Credit Hours**

Prerequisite: Graduate standing, PHYS 5393 (QMI), PHYS 5403 (QMII), PHYS 5573 (EMI), PHYS 5153 (Class Mech), and PHYS 5163 (Stat Mech), or equivalent. This course introduces students to several many-body treatments and illustrates the techniques on a variety of examples, focusing on applications of historical importance and recent modern developments. The course focuses on non-relativistic (as opposed to relativistic) quantum many-body techniques and applications. Students will be introduced to mean-field theory, Green's functions, broken symmetries and transformations, path integrals, and diagrammatic techniques. (Irreg.)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: PHYS 5013 or permission. May be repeated with change of content; maximum credit nine hours. Topics covered will be selected by instructor and announced prior to the term in which it will be offered. The course is intended to offer material currently used in theoretical physics. (Irreg.)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: graduate standing or permission of instructor. May be repeated; maximum credit six hours. Directed readings and/or literature review under the direction of a faculty member. (Irreg.)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: graduate standing or permission of instructor. May be repeated; maximum credit 12 hours. Special topics or seminar course for content not currently offered in regularly scheduled courses. May include library and/or research and field projects. (Irreg.)

**2-16 Credit Hours**

2 to 16 hours. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and permission of instructor; may be repeated. Directed research culminating in the completion of the doctoral dissertation. (F, Sp, Su)

**1-3 Credit Hours**

1 to 3 hours. Prerequisite: Graduate standing and permission of instructor. May be repeated; maximum credit nine hours. Contracted independent study for a topic not currently offered in regularly scheduled courses. Independent study may include library and/or laboratory research and field projects. (Irreg.)