Physics and Astronomy

Office: Physics Building, Room 211
Mail Code: 2112 E. Wesley Ave. Denver, CO 80208
Phone: 303-871-2238
Web Site:

The study of physics and astronomy is for anyone who wants to explore the workings of the natural world on scales from the subatomic to the cosmic. The department offers courses of study that can lead either to the BS (for those desiring more rigorous scientific coursework) or the BA (for those needing more flexibility in choosing courses, especially in combination with a non-science major). The BS degree offers three concentrations in the physics major (biological physics, computational physics, and nanophysics) that include additional interdisciplinary coursework from other science and engineering programs. Because of their training in critical thinking, physics and astronomy students acquire an excellent background for a wide variety of careers, including scientific research, medicine, law, finance, information technology, computer science, engineering, scientific or technical writing, K–12 teaching and public education through museums or planetariums. A minor in physics, astrophysics or medical physics is a valuable addition to many majors and is attractive to employers. Moreover, our majors can pursue a 4+1 dual degree, BS in physics with MS in mechanical or electrical engineering.

The department underwent a strong expansion with nine tenure-track and two teaching professor positions filled since 2006. Our diverse and dynamic faculty of 12 includes four women and come from seven different countries. The program is recognized by the APS among US PhD-granting departments for our high percentage (50%) of female graduates: placing second nationally at the undergraduate level and third at the graduate level (American Physical Society data for the period 2011-2013). We contribute 30% more physics bachelor's degrees to the university STEM graduates than the national average (American Physical Society data for the period 2015-2017). Our low student-to-faculty ratio enables us to provide research opportunities to all undergraduate majors, and our small class size facilitates individualized instruction and academic advising. We also have an award-winning chapter of the Society of Physics Students that actively contributes to our community-building and outreach efforts. Our graduates go on to graduate, law or medical school, or pursue careers in industry, business, medical research, teaching, and the military.