Applied Physics

Majors & Minors

During their third year at Southwestern, students will apply for admission to an ABET accredited engineering school (which usually requires a GPA of 3.0). Students must have completed at least 90 credits including the general education core courses and the courses required for the Applied Physics major before leaving Southwestern. After completing 30 credits of applicable coursework in an ABET engineering program, students must submit their transcript(s) to Southwestern for review by the Physics Department Chair. Upon the Chair’s approval and satisfactory completion of all BA Degree Requirements as outlined in Southwestern University’s Catalog, students may be awarded a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Applied Physics. The work submitted from the ABET accredited school will be treated as “in residence” coursework. In order to participate in commencement at Southwestern, students in the Pre-Engineering program must complete an Application for Diploma by the date noted in the SU official calendar for their intended Southwestern graduation semester, and they must have submitted a transcript showing that they have successfully completed at least 15 hours of approved courses with the remainder of courses in-progress. The University degree will be conferred only after the final transcript is submitted and approved.

Past SU students have attended Arizona State University in Tempe, Texas A&M University in College Station and Portland State University. Southwestern University currently has an agreement with Washington University in St. Louis that gives preferential admission to students that have a GPA of 3.0 or higher and a recommendation from the Chair of Pre-Engineering program. In addition, Washington University in St. Louis offers a scholarship that covers half of the tuition costs to eligible transfer students. Each student is encouraged to consult regularly with the Physics chair on Southwestern curriculum updates and to seek preapproval for courses to be taken elsewhere.

Note on course numbering: Please refer to the home department’s course numbering policy for cross-listed courses.

Major in Applied Physics: 17 courses (Majors consist of a minimum of 30 credits.)

  • CHE51-153 Principles of General Chemistry or CHE51-143 Principles of General Chemistry with Tutorial
  • CHE51-151 Chemical Methods and Techniques Laboratory
  • CHE51-163/161 Chemical Kinetics and Equilibrium
  • MAT52-154 Calculus I
  • MAT52-254 Calculus II
  • MAT52-354 Calculus III
  • MAT52-754 Differential Equations
  • PHY53-104 Introduction to Engineering
  • PHY53-154 Fundamentals of Physics I
  • PHY53-164 Fundamentals of Physics II
  • PHY53-214 Elementary Modern Physics
  • PHY53-334 Classical Mechanics I
  • PHY53-434 Statics
  • PHY53-872 Capstone Course
  • One pre-engineering elective from below
  • Two additional pre-approved upper-level engineering courses transferred from an ABET accredited engineering school (totaling at least 6 credits)

Pre-Engineering Electives

  • MAT52-674 Linear Algebra
  • PHY53-404 Electronics
  • PHY53-324 Electromagnetism I
  • PHY53-413 Classical Mechanics II
  • PHY53-443 Thermodynamics
  • PHY53-454 Math Methods in Physical Science

Applied Physics 53-104

INTRODUCTION TO ENGINEERING (3-4). Introduction to engineering as a discipline and a profession. Examines the design, manufacture, assembly and evaluation of products using individual and team projects. Particular emphasis is placed on the role of written and graphical communication in the design process, the use of computer-aided design and rapid prototyping in product development and the role of entrepreneurship in high-tech ventures. (NSL) (Spring, Even years)