Department of Physics
Are there more than three spatial dimensions to the universe?
What is time?
What will be the ultimate fate of the universe?
Why can't I unmix the cream from my coffee?
What happens if two atomic nuclei collide at nearly the speed of light?
Physicists explore questions such as these, studying the behavior of nature from the largest to the smallest scales, and from the fundamental to the immediately practical. Albert Einstein once wrote that "the most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible." Physics is concerned with discovering patterns and regularities in nature and finding ways to describe and explain these patterns in order to help us better understand the world around us.
Wittenberg's physics program is designed to give you a foundation of sufficient depth and breadth to enable you to pursue physics at the graduate level or to embark on other technical careers. Our curriculum emphasizes hands-on experience with laboratory equipment and computer applications as well as the development of technical communication skills, all of which are highly valued by employers and graduate programs.
All physics majors gain research experience in a senior capstone project of their choosing; faculty are active in mentoring students in these capstone projects. Many students do additional research or participate in off-campus internships. Our students regularly present their research at national and regional professional society meetings. Many physics majors find on-campus employment as tutors in physics or the Math Workshop, or assisting faculty with special projects.
More than 60% of Wittenberg physics majors go on to graduate school in physics, astronomy, engineering, or related fields. Graduate programs attended by our recent graduates include:
Physicists have knowledge and skills that are applicable to a wide range of problems. Consequently, physicists are always in demand by employers. Jobs held by our recent graduates include:
Physics Department in the News:
The Physics Department's goals are to:
- provide a rigorous, flexible, and effective curriculum for physics majors and minors, with sufficient depth of study for those students who expect to pursue physics, astronomy, or engineering at the graduate level, or embark on technical careers
- provide effective and relevant service courses for the many students whose majors or career goals require physics or astronomy courses
- provide effective and engaging courses for the many students who choose to take physics or astronomy courses as part of the breadth of a liberal arts education.
Physics majors pursuing a career in secondary education in math and science may be eligible for the Robert C. Noyce Scholarship. Learn more about the Noyce Scholarship on the Wittenberg Noyce Scholarship homepage.