Graduate courses

All Ph.D. and Masters students in the Physics group are required to take:

A. Core Course Requirements: To be completed within the first four semesters.

  1. PHYS 237 - Quantum Mechanics I
  2. PHYS 210 - Electrodynamics
  3. PHYS 212 - Statistical Mechanics
  4. PHYS 205 - Classical Mechanics

B. Electives: To be completed at any time during the PhD or Masters

  1. An elective from the physics courses
  2. A second elective which may be chosen from any graduate level course in the School of Natural Sciences or Engineering Physics electives include advanced physics courses such as Quantum Mechanics II, Condensed Matter Physics, Biophysics and any other PHYS 2XX courses available. They can also include graduate courses from the applied math, BEST or chemistry groups as long as they are 3 units and taken as a graded class. Any elective must be at least 3 units and we require at least one elective be a course outside the student's primary research area for Ph.D students, which can be selected by discussion with the student's graduate advisor or the graduate group chair for Physics.
  3. In addition, students must take 1 unit of BEST/QSB294 Responsible Conduct of Research, 4 semesters of Physics seminar.

Other courses may be added to these lists as fulfilling the requirements at any time, as designated by the physics faculty. There is no foreign language course requirement.

If a student would like to attain a waiver for any of the courses above, the rules are:

  1. No waiver will be granted unless the student has passed the preliminary exam.
  2. For waivers regarding elective courses, a student can only ask for a waiver on one elective course. All core courses can be waived if competency is demonstrated.
  3. For a waiver on any of the courses, the student will need to attain the waiver from the faculty member who taught the course most recently. The faculty member granting the waiver will only do so if the student can successfully complete an exam in the course. This exam can be given at any time at the faculty and student's convenience, any time of the year. The final decision to grant the waiver will be taken by the Graduate Division.

Course electives must be regular graduate courses (not research or independent study). Courses offered by other graduate programs may be taken as electives but require approval of the major professor. Requirements for formal course work beyond the minimum are flexible and are determined by the individual student's background and research topic in consultation with themajor professor.

All Physics graduate students must successfully complete their core course requirements with a grade of S or B or better. A student may petition the graduate chair for a single B- grade to be accepted. Graduate students should be aware that grades obtained of B-; may land them in a state of unsatisfactory degree progress, as they must maintain an overall GPA of 3.0, and their semester GPA must not remain below 3.0 for two consecutive semesters. Graduate students should also be advised that S/U grades do not count towards GPA calculation by the registrar.

Contact Us

Physics Graduate Group Chair
Sayantani Ghosh, Associate Professor
Physics Undergraduate Lead
Lin Tian, Associate Professor
Physics Bylaw Unit Chair
Kevin Mitchell, Professor
Physics Address
University of California, Merced
5200 North Lake Road
Merced, CA 95343
Shipping Address
University of California, Merced
ATTN: (Name of recipient)
School of Natural Sciences
Facilities Services Building A
5200 N. Lake Road
Merced, CA 95343

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University of California, Merced
The first new American research
university in the 21st century, with a
mission of research, teaching and service.
University of California, Merced
5200 North Lake Road
Merced, CA 95343
T: (209) 228-4400
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