Physics

Physics is a broad discipline, ranging from fundamental scientific questions to sophisticated technological applications. At its most basic, it is the study of matter and energy and their manifold interactions. Physicists study topics as wide-ranging as the underlying nature of space and time; the origins, large-scale structure, and future evolution of the universe; the behavior of stars and galaxies; the fundamental constituents of matter; the many different patterns in which matter is organized, including superconductivity, liquid crystals, or the various forms of magnetism in solids; the workings of biological matter, whether in molecules such as DNA, or cellular structures, or the transport of matter and energy in and across cells; and many others. Basic physics research has led to myriad technological advances, which have transformed society in the 20th century through the present day; a small list includes: radio and television; computers; lasers; X-rays; magnetic resonance imaging and CAT scans; and the World Wide Web.

Physics is a hands-on discipline, and our students gain expertise not only in the classroom but also in the laboratory. They may participate in activities ranging from the writing of realistic computer modeling of fundamental physical principles to the modeling of financial activities, as well as the more traditional activities of physicists and mathematicians. Those trained in physics are found in many occupations, such as various fields of engineering, computer technology, health, environmental and earth sciences, communications, finance, and science writing. A higher degree opens the possibility of creative research in industry, or teaching and research in colleges and universities. Outstanding and highly motivated students are offered special opportunities for honors work, independent study, summer laboratory research, internships, and other enhancements. Our interdisciplinary approach and experimental work is geared to meet the current demand for scientists with well-integrated backgrounds who became the leaders in modern scientific scholarship and who pursue careers in research, education, industry, health care, business, and publishing.

Degree Requirements – 2018-19 Bulletin

* = offered in Spring ’19 in Shanghai

The requirements below are from the online version of the 2018-19 bulletin. Please refer to the Pre-2016-17 Registrar’s All Majors Degree Requirements Record, 2016-17 Registrar’s All Majors Degree Requirements Record, or 2017-18 Registrar's All Majors Degree Requirements Record. Not every course listed is taught every semester, and in any given semester other courses may be offered that fulfill this requirement. Requirements may be met through equivalent courses in the Global Network with prior approval.
PREREQUISITE COURSES
BIOL-SHU 21 Foundations of Biology I* Pre-req or co-req: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus or MATH-SHU 201 Honors Calculus
BIOL-SHU 123 FoS Biology Laboratory Pre-reqs: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus or MATH-SHU 201 Honors Calculus AND BIOL-SHU 21 Foundations of Biology I
CHEM-SHU 125 Foundations of Chemistry I Pre-req or co-req: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus or MATH-SHU 201 Honors Calculus
CHEM-SHU 126 Foundations of Chemistry II* Pre-req: CHEM-SHU 125 Foundations of Chemistry I AND pre-req or co-req: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus or MATH-SHU 201 Honors Calculus
CHEM-SHU 127 FoS Chemistry Laboratory* Pre-req or co-req: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus or MATH-SHU 201 Honors Calculus AND CHEM-SHU 126 Foundations of Chemistry II
PHYS-SHU 71 FoS Physics Laboratory Pre-req or co-req: PHYS-SHU 91 Foundations of Physics I Honors or PHYS-SHU 11 General Physics I

PHYS-SHU 91 OR

PHYS-SHU 11

Foundations of Physics I Honors OR

General Physics I

Pre-req or co-req: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus or MATH-SHU 201 Honors Calculus
PHYS-SHU 93 Foundations of Physics II Honors* Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 91 Foundations of Physics I Honors OR PHYS-SHU 11 General Physics I with B+ or higher grade
PHYS-SHU 94 Physics II Laboratory* Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 71 FoS Physics Laboratory
PHYS-SHU 95 Foundations of Physics III Honors Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 93 Foundations of Physics II Honors
PHYS-SHU 96 Foundations of Physics IV Honors* Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 95 Foundations of Physics III Honors
Note that Physics majors are not required to take Foundations of Biology II.
ADDITIONAL REQUIRED COURSES
MATH-SHU 123 Multivariable Calculus* Pre-req: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus with C or higher grade
MATH-SHU 235 Probability and Statistics* Pre-reqs: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus AND MATH-SHU 140 Linear Algebra or MATH-SHU 123 Multivariable Calculus. Not open to students who took MATH-SHU 233 Theory of Probability
MATH-SHU 265 Linear Algebra and Differential Equations Pre-req: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus or MATH-SHU 201 Honors Calculus
PHYS-SHU 106 Mathematical Physics* Pre-req or co-req: MATH-SHU 265 Linear Algebra and Differential Equations AND MATH-SHU 123 Multivariable Calculus
PHYS-SHU 251 Electricity and Magnetism Pre-req: MATH-SHU 95 Foundations of Physics III Honors and MATH-SHU 106 Mathematical Physics
PHYS-SHU 301 Quantum Mechanics Pre-reqs: PHYS-SHU 95 Foundations of Physics III Honors and PHYS-SHU 106 Mathematical Physics
PHYS-SHU 302 Statistical Mechanics and Thermodynamics* Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 95 Foundations of Physics III Honors
PHYS-SHU 303 Advanced Physics Laboratory* Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 95 Foundations of Physics III Honors
PHYSICS ELECTIVES: Choose Two
PHYS-SHU 200 Optical Imaging: Applications in Biology and Engineering*  
PHYS-SHU 314 Astrophysics  
PHYS-SHU 255 Biophysics  
PHYS-SHU 210 Computational Physics  
PHYS-SHU 315 Nuclear and Particle Physics Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 301 Quantum Mechanics or PHYS-UA 123 Quantum Mechanics I
PHYS-SHU 252 Solid State Physics  
PHYS-SHU 997 Physics Independent Study* Please note that Independent Study must have a combined total of 4 credits. This can be done in 1 semester with a 4-credit load. Students can also fulfill this requirement over 2 semesters and take 2-credit loads each semester. Students should fill out the permission form after consulting with the DUS and Faculty Research Advisor for approval.
PHYS-SHU 999 Physics Undergraduate Honors Thesis* Students must receive invitation of Physics Area Coordinator
Recommended Spring 2019 Courses

Recommended courses for Freshmen (Class of 2022) to take in Spring 2019

  1. Writing as Inquiry (4 credits)
  2. Foundations of Physics II Honors (3 credits) + Physics II Lab (2 credits)
  3. Foundations of Biology (3 credits)
  4. Multivariable Calculus (4 credits)
  5. EAP/Chinese (2 credits)

Recommended courses for Sophomores (Class of 2021) to take in Spring 2019

  1. Foundations of Physics IV Honors (3 credits)
  2. Foundations of Chemistry II (3 credits) + FoS Chemistry Lab (2 credits)
  3. Mathematical Physics (4 credits)
  4. EAP/Chinese/Core/General Electives (4 credits)
Note that students are required to have completed Elementary Chinese II or 8 credits of English for Academic Purposes (EAP) before they are eligible to study away. Pre-med students should also consider taking Organic Chemistry II.
Faculty Mentor

Prof. Pilkyung Moon Email: pilkyung.moon@nyu.edu | Profile

Minor in Physics
PHYS-SHU 71 FoS Physics Laboratory Pre-req or co-req: PHYS-SHU 91 Foundations of Physics I Honors or PHYS-SHU 11 General Physics I

PHYS-SHU 91 OR

PHYS-SHU 11

Foundations of Physics I Honors OR

General Physics I

pre-req or co-req: MATH-SHU 121 Calculus
PHYS-SHU 93 Foundations of Physics II Honors* Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 91 Foundations of Physics I Honors OR PHYS-SHU 11 General Physics I with B+ or higher grade
PHYS-SHU 94 Physics II* Laboratory Pre-req: PHYS-SHU 71 FoS Physics Laboratory
Two Physics elective courses
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