Engineering Physics

The Department of Engineering Sciences and the Department of Physics and Astronomy offer a major in Engineering Physics. A key feature of the major is a 5/5 split in courses, unlike a modified major which requires six courses from one field and four from the other.


The prerequisites for this program are: Math 3, 8, 13, 23; Phys 13, 14; Chem 5; and CoSc 5 or Engs 20.

Required or Core Courses

The required or core courses for this program are:

  • Engs 22 (Systems)
  • Engs 23 (Distributed Systems and Fields)
  • Engs 24 (Science of Materials)
  • Phys 19 (Introductory Physics III)
  • Phys 24 (Introductory Physics IV)
  • Phys 43 (Statistical Physics)
  • [Students taking Physics 15 and 16 may substitute a third elective for Physics 19.]

In addition, there are four electives--two from each department. You must select two electives from the following list:

  • Engs 25 Thermodynamics
  • Engs 33 Solid Mechanics
  • Engs 34 Fluid Mechanics
  • Phys 42 Introductory Quantum Mechanics
  • Phys 68 Introductory Plasma Physics
  • Phys 91 Intermediate Quantum Mechanics
  • Phys 73 Introductory Condensed Matter Physics or Engs 131 Science of Solid State Materials
  • Phys 66 Relativistic Electrodynamics or Engs 120 Electromagnetic Fields and Waves
  • Phys 44 Mechanics or Engs 140 Applied Mechanics: Dynamics

and any two electives* from the Engineering Sciences Department: Engs 21 and higher, excluding Engs 80 and 87, or from the Physics and Astronomy Department which fulfill the straight Physics major.

You must also complete a culminating experience course which can be one of the following:

  • Phys 68 Introductory Plasma Physics
  • Phys 72 Introductory Particle Physics
  • Phys 73 Introductory Condensed Matter Physics
  • Phys 74 Space Plasma Physics
  • Phys 76 Methods of Experimental Physics
  • Phys 82 Special Topics Seminar
  • Phys 87 Undergraduate Research (honors thesis)
  • Engs 86 Independent Project
  • Engs 88 Honors thesis
  • Engs 89** Engineering Design Methodology and Project Initiation [which must be taken as part of the two-course design sequence 89/90]
  • An advanced engineering sciences course with a significant design or research project, normally taken in the senior year, chosen from an approved list. (Consult the Engineering Sciences Department for the most recent list.)

*Effective with the Class of 2011, students wishing to pursue the BE degree are advised to choose an Engineering Sciences course as their elective, and to choose Engineering Sciences 165 for their culminating experience.

**Prior to enrollment in Engineering Sciences 89 at least six engineering sciences must be completed: Engineering Sciences 21 plus five additional courses numbered 22-76.

All major programs require an average GPA of 2.0 in all courses counted towards the major, including prerequisites.

Further Information

For further information, please contact either:

Professor Kristina Lynch (Physics and Astronomy)


Professor  Jifeng Liu (Engineering Science)

For more information on the Thayer School of Engineering, visit their website.