Undergraduate Study

Welcome to the Physics webpage for Duke undergraduates. Here you can learn about available courses, graduation requirements, how to graduate with distinction, opportunities for research, how to meet other students and have fun through Duke's chapter of the Society of Physics Students, and other useful information. You can click on the titles of the sections below for a broader view of the physics major, or click on some of the links at right to get more specific information.

 The Physics Department invites all students to take our courses and to learn about how nature works at a level that is often deeper and more satisfying than one finds in other areas of science or in engineering. The Physics faculty and staff look forward to meeting you, to talking with you inside and outside of our classrooms, and to collaborating with you in our research groups.

Why Physics?

If you are considering taking a physics course or becoming a physics major or minor, please read this pep talk about why physics is well worth your time and effort: you will learn conceptual, experimental, and problem-solving skills that many employers appreciate as valuable, and get to learn first hand from courses, labs, and research how exciting 21st-century physics is.

The Biophysics Major

Do you like biology in addition to physics? The Physics Department, in coordination with the Departments of Biology and Chemistry, also offers a Biophysics major. Please go to the Biophysics webpage to learn more.

An Informal Overview of Undergraduate Physics Courses

Do you feel that you need a PhD just to understand the descriptions of the physics courses in the Duke Bulletin? Fear not, here are non-technical explanations of what you will learn in the core courses taken by majors and minors, and how those courses relate to other physics courses and to the universe.

Fun Websites, Videos, Books, and Articles Related to Physics

Here is a list of websites, popular books, videos, and journal articles related to physics.

Who Is Hiring Physics Bachelor’s?          

A searchable state-by-state listing of many employers who recently hired physics bachelor’s into science and engineering positions. 

Latest Employment Data for Physicists     

Reports that provide the latest data on where physicists work and what they do throughout the economy and at different degree levels.

Statistical Research Center home page