Requirements for the major

56 hours 

I. Departmental requirements:
  1. At least 38 credit hours in Physics, including the following or equivalent courses: PHYS-1111, PHYS-1112, PHYS-1311 (or PHYS-1309), PHYS-1312 (or PHYS-1310), PHYS-2231, PHYS-3321PHYS-3322, PHYS-3323, PHYS-3324, PHYS-3325, PHYS-3333, PHYS-3335, PHYS-4221, PHYS-4231, PHYS-4395. (Honors students will take PHYS-3398, PHYS-4398, and PHYS-4399 in place of PHYS-4395.)
  2. At least one course from the following: PHYS-3336, PHYS-4343, PHYS-4346, or PHYS-4350.
  3. Math requirements:
  4. Computer Science Requirements:  
  5. Seminar Requirement:  
    • Four semesters of PHYS-2094.  
    • Students double majoring in either MATH or CSCI may substitute up to 2 semesters of MATH-2094 or CSCI-2094.
  6. Completion of Wagner Senior Assessment Exam in fall of the senior year.
II. University requirements: 

Completion of all other required elements of the Pathways curriculum and at least 120 credit hours. 

The Bachelor of Science Program is designed to prepare students for graduate work in Physics. The above are minimal requirements allowing students to supplement their programs with those courses best suited to fulfill their particular needs and to further their professional growth. 

Teacher Certification in Physics

Students completing either the B.A. or B.S. physics major have two options to receive certification to teach physics in grades 8-12 in Texas through Trinity’s Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program. Students can pursue (1) the Grades 8-12 Physics/Mathematics certification, which would enable a graduate to teach physics and mathematics or (2) the Grades 8-12 Physical Science certification, which would enable a graduate to teach physics as well as chemistry and 8th grade general science (this would require coursework in chemistry and geosciences in addition to the physics major). Both options require undergraduate education coursework as preparation for entry into the MAT program and to fulfill state requirements. Students who complete Trinity’s 5 year Teacher Education Program will earn both a Bachelor’s degree in Physics and Master of Arts in Teaching as well as teacher certification. For more information and specific requirements, including middle school and elementary science teaching opportunities as well, see the Education Department’s program description in the course catalog. 


Full acceptance in the major is granted if the following requirements are met at the time of application:

  1. Completion of PHYS-1111, PHYS-1112, PHYS-1311 (or PHYS-1309), PHYS-1312 (or PHYS-1310), PHYS-3323 with grades of C or better;
  2. Completion of MATH-1311, MATH-1312 with grades of C or better; and
  3. A grade point average of at least 2.0 on all university work.

Provisional acceptance in the major is granted if it is apparent that the applicant can meet the requirements for full acceptance by the end of the semester in which the application is made.

Transfer students will be accepted provisionally pending completion at Trinity of at least one upper division course with a grade of C or better. 


A student in Physics may work toward Honors in Physics under the Bachelor of Science Degree program. The requirement for Honors in Physics is the successful completion of the Bachelor of Science program except that an honors student will take PHYS-3398, PHYS-4398, and PHYS-4399 in place of PHYS-4395 and will be required to take a total of 44 hours of physics. During the junior year, a student who is eligible for honors will, after consultation with the chair of the Physics and Astronomy Department, enroll in PHYS-3398; part of the requirement of this course will be to prepare a thesis proposal. In the second semester of the junior year, an honors student will present a thesis proposal and credentials to the department faculty. Upon approval of the proposal, a student may enroll in PHYS-4398, PHYS-4399 during the senior year. By the end of the senior year, the thesis must be presented and defended before the Physics and Astronomy Department faculty. 

Contact Us

 Department Website

  Jennifer Steele, Ph.D. (Chair)


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