Department of Mathematics, Physics, and Statistics
Mission Statement
The Department of Mathematics, Physics, and Statistics at Azusa Pacific University:
 Offers undergraduate programs in mathematics, applied mathematics, physics, and statistics, as well as a single subject waiver for a teaching credential in mathematics;
 Provides General Education mathematics and science courses consistent with the outcomes of a liberal arts education;
 Prepares students for graduate study or success in their chosen careers; and
 Offers a Master of Science in Applied Statistics and Analytics degree program.
Math and Physics Fellowships
Each year, the Department of Mathematics, Physics, and Statistics awards two fouryear fellowships to incoming freshmen. For more information, contact the department at (626) 8156470 or mathphysics@apu.edu.
Majors
 Applied Mathematics (B.S.)
 Mathematics (B.A.)
 Mathematics (B.A.) with Integrated Credential
 Mathematics (B.S.)
 Physics (B.S.)
Minors
Mathematics Placement
APU uses the ALEKS PPL system to determine the best initial math placement for most students who need to take a math course (whether to satisfy the General Education Quantitative Literacy requirement or a major or minor requirement). Students who need to use ALEKS are encouraged to take an initial diagnostic assessment at home and then to work in their personalized Prep and Learning Module to review. They will then be able to retake the assessment up to four times in order to achieve their best possible score.
Math Course Prerequisites
Prerequisites for common math courses are as follows:
Course(s)  Prerequisite(s) 

MATH 90: Foundations of Mathematical Reasoning  ALEKS 1529 
MATH 95: Intermediate Algebra  ALEKS 3044 or MATH 90 
MATH 99: SelfPaced Mathematics Lab  ALEKS 029 
MATH 115: Mathematics in Society MATH 130: Introduction to Statistics  ALEKS 30100 or MATH 90 
MATH 110: College Algebra UNRS 299: Statistics and Data Management for Nursing and Health Care  ALEKS 45100 or MATH 95 
MATH 149: Fundamentals of Precalculus MATH 150: Precalculus MATH 151: Applied Calculus I  ALEKS 60100 or MATH 110 
MATH 165: Calculus I  ALEKS 75100 or MATH 149 (which may be taken concurrently) or MATH 150 
Math Test Score Equivalents
The table below shows how various test scores translate into APU math placement and/or course credit:
Scores  Results 


Treated as if you have passed MATH 110 College Algebra at the level of B or higher 

Treated as if you have passed MATH 110 College Algebra at the level of B or higher; credit granted 

Credit granted for MATH 130 Introduction to Statistics 

Treated as if you have passed MATH 110 College Algebra at the level of a B or higher 

Treated as if you have passed MATH 110 College Algebra at the level of C or higher (fails to meet the grade minimum of B required as a prerequisite for CHEM 151 or to apply to any of the majors in the School of Business and Management other than the B.A. in Business Management) 
MATH 90, Foundations of Mathematical Reasoning, 3 Units
This course prepares students for MATH 95 Intermediate Algebra, MATH 115 Mathematics in Society, or MATH 130 Introduction to Statistics. Topics include proportional reasoning; financial decision making; chance, risk, and probability; and algebraic modeling. Students practice reading, analyzing, and writing about quantitative texts; using spreadsheets to make efficient calculations; and solving algebraic equations to make predictions and decisions. This course does not meet the General Education Quantitative Literacy requirement and does not count toward total units needed for graduation.
Prerequisite: An appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment.
MATH 95, Intermediate Algebra, 3 Units
This course prepares students for the General Education Quantitative Literacy courses. Topics include linear graphs, mathematical models, systems of equations in two and three variables, multiplying and factoring polynomial functions, rational and radical expressions and functions, complex numbers, quadratic equations, and mathematical modeling with quadratic functions. This course does not meet the General Education Quantitative Literacy requirement and does not count toward total units needed for graduation.
Prerequisite: MATH 90 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment
MATH 99, Selfpaced Mathematics Lab, 1 Unit
This course is an alternative to MATH 90 for students who prefer an individualized developmental math experience. An adaptive online learning system enables students to skip topics they have already mastered and work at their own pace on the topics they need to learn, with support from a faculty member. The goal is to help students test out of MATH 90 in order to accelerate their path toward a General Education Quantitative Literacy course. This course does not meet the General Education Quantitative Literacy requirement and does not count toward total units needed for graduation.
Prerequisite: ALEKS math placement score of 029 (or no ALEKS score).
MATH 100, Mathematics Seminar I, 1 Unit
An exploration of the historical interactions between Christian faith and the development of science and mathematics. The course begins with several short guest lectures introducing the questions that animate various fields of mathematical inquiry. Readings and seminar discussions then focus on three questions: "When, how, and why did people find mathematics in nature?", "Why is there so much mathematics in nature?", and "Can everything be explained by mathematics?" The course concludes with student presentations on the role of faith in the life and work of certain famous mathematicians and scientists.
MATH 110, College Algebra, 3 Units
A study of basic college algebra, including various elementary functions (linear, polynomial, rational, radical, exponential, and logarithmic), their properties and graphs, and equations and systems of equations. Emphasis is placed on using algebraic concepts to model and analyze realworld phenomena. Meets the General Education Requirement: Quantitative Literacy (Math).
Prerequisite: MATH 95 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment
MATH 115, Mathematics in Society, 3 Units
This course helps students to make sense of quantitative information commonly encountered in everyday life in society. Students use mathematical methods and spreadsheets to analyze data from real newspaper articles in order to deepen their understanding of societal issues and personal financial management. Mathematical topics include estimation, unit conversions, percentages, indices, weighted averages, statistical summaries, linear and exponential models, and probabilities. These tools are used to analyze issues such as carbon footprints, crime rates, currency conversions, taxes, minimum wages, inflation, grade point averages, salary distributions, electricity bills, climate change predictions, interest and depreciation, gambling, insurance, screening for diseases, and DNA evidence. Meets the General Education Requirement: Quantitative Literacy (Math).
Prerequisite: MATH 90 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment
MATH 120, Contemporary Mathematics, 3 Units
An overview of various mathematical topics and their connections to modern society. Topics differ from those covered in the typical school mathematics sequence and may include voting theory, graphs and networks, modular arithmetic, symmetry, statistics and probability, infinity and cardinality, fractals and chaos, and others. Emphasis is placed on conceptual understanding, solid reasoning, and clear communication, rather than on algebraic manipulation. Meets the General Education Requirement: Quantitative Literacy (Math).
Prerequisite: MATH 95 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment
MATH 130, Introduction to Statistics, 3 Units
This course is an introduction to the basic concepts and practices of statistics, including frequency distributions; graphs; central tendency; variation; probability; binomial, normal, t, and chisquare distributions; confidence intervals; hypothesis testing; correlation; regression; and ANOVA. Meets the General Education Requirement: Quantitative Literacy (Math).
Prerequisite: MATH 90 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment.
MATH 149, Fundamentals of Precalculus, 1 Unit
This course is a condensed alternative to MATH 150 designed for biology, biochemistry, and chemistry majors. Topics include circle trigonometry and sinusoidal functions, righttriangle trigonometry, and trigonometric equations and identities, as well as a brief review of exponential and logarithmic equations.
Prerequisite: MATH 110 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment. Only students with a declared major or interest in biology, biochemistry, or chemistry are permitted to register for this class.
MATH 150, Precalculus, 3 Units
This course prepares students for the calculus sequence. Topics include number systems, analytic geometry, elementary function theory (including logarithmic and trigonometric functions), and basic proof techniques.
Prerequisite: MATH 110 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment
MATH 151, Applied Calculus I, 3 Units
An introduction to the calculus of a single variable with a focus on applications. Topics include elementary functions (linear, exponential, logarithmic, power, and periodic), differentiation, and optimization.
Prerequisite: MATH 110 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment
MATH 152, Applied Calculus II, 3 Units
A continuation of MATH 151 combining further study of calculus with an introduction to probability and statistics. Problem solving in the biological sciences is emphasized. Topics include integration, substitution, separable differential equation solutions and equilibria, discretetime dynamical systems, probability, and the descriptive statistics of discrete and continuous random variables.
Prerequisite: MATH 151
MATH 161, Calculus I, 5 Units
An introduction to the calculus of a single variable. Topics include limits, continuity, differentiation, integration, and the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus, with application to rates of change, the shape of a graph, optimization, areas, and volumes.
Prerequisite: MATH 150 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment
MATH 162, Calculus II, 4 Units
A continuation of MATH 161. Topics include the calculus of exponential, trigonometric, and hyperbolic functions and their inverses, integration methods, arc length and surface area, parametric and polar curves, sequences, and series.
Prerequisite: MATH 161 with a C or better
MATH 165, Calculus I, 3 Units
Students in this course learn the theory and applications of the derivative, a mathematical tool used to calculate instantaneous rates of change. Topics include limits, continuity, interpretation and computation of derivatives, shapes of graphs, optimization, related rates, and parametric equations.
Prerequisite: MATH 150 or an appropriate score on the APU mathematics placement assessment or MATH 149 (May be taken concurrently)
MATH 166, Calculus II, 3 Units
Students in this course learn the theory and applications of the integral, a mathematical tool used to calculate the net change in a quantity over time. Topics include the definite integral, antiderivatives, the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus, integration techniques and applications, area and volume, arc length and surface area, and polar coordinates. The course concludes with a brief introduction to differential equations.
Prerequisite: C or better in MATH 165
MATH 167, Sequences and Series, 1 Unit
This course introduces the powerful method of representing a function as a "polynomial of infinite degree." Topics include sequences and series, tests for convergence, power series, intervals of convergence, Taylor series, and applications.
Prerequisite: MATH 166 (May be taken concurrently)
MATH 199, Calculus Fundamentals for Statistics, 1 Unit
An introduction to fundamental topics in calculus required for understanding statistical theory and methods. Topics in this course include the interpretation of derivatives and integrals, rules for singlevariable differentiation and integration, applications to optimization, moments and areas, and basic multivariable differentiation and integration.
Prerequisite: Acceptance in M.S. in Applied Statistics and Analytics program.
MATH 200, Mathematics Seminar II, 1 Unit
An exploration of the value and purpose of mathematical work. Students engage with Christian perspectives on the value of work and culture in general, then assess a variety of viewpoints regarding the value of mathematical work in particular. These readings and conversations prepare students to develop and articulate an understanding of how mathematics could contribute to their personal vocation, calling, or life purpose.
Prerequisite: MATH 100
MATH 201, Mathematics Concepts for Elementary Teachers, 3 Units
The course provides the foundations of modern mathematics needed by the elementary school teacher. It is not a methods course, but a prerequisite to the MultipleSubject Teaching Credential Program. This course does not count toward a mathematics major or minor.
Prerequisite: MATH 110 or equivalent
MATH 250, Data Analysis, 3 Units
This course features handson experience using statistical tools to answer realworld questions. Students design and implement a short survey and analyze their results. Emphasis is on analysis of actual survey data using statistical software. Statistical topics include numerical/graphical summaries, measures of association, and statistical techniques to include chisquare tests, ttests, ANOVA, and regression. Focus is on interpretation, not calculation.
MATH 263, Multivariable Calculus, 4 Units
An introduction to the calculus of several variables. Topics include vectors, lines, and planes in three dimensions, vectorvalued functions, partial and directional derivatives, Lagrange multipliers, multiple integration in rectangular, polar, cylindrical, and spherical coordinate systems, vector fields, line integrals, Green's Theorem, curl and divergence, surface integrals, Stokes' Theorem, and the Divergence Theorem.
Prerequisite: MATH 162
MATH 268, Multivariable Calculus, 3 Units
Students in this course learn about the calculus of functions of several variables. Topics include surfaces and contour diagrams, vectors, partial and directional derivatives, optimization and Lagrange multipliers, and multiple integration in rectangular, polar, cylindrical, and spherical coordinate systems.
Prerequisite: C or better in MATH 166
MATH 269, Vector Calculus, 2 Units
Students in this course learn about the calculus of vector fields, leading to several higherdimensional versions of the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus. Topics include parametrized curves; vector fields and flow; line integrals, gradients, and pathindependence; Green's Theorem; divergence, flux integrals, and the Divergence Theorem; curl and Stokes' Theorem; and parametrized surfaces and change of coordinates.
Prerequisite: C or better in MATH 268
MATH 270, Ordinary Differential Equations, 4 Units
An introduction to ordinary differential equations and their applications. Topics include first and second order equations, Laplace transform, systems of differential equations, phase plane analysis, numerical methods, and SturmLiouville boundary value problems.
Prerequisite: MATH 263 or Instructor's consent
MATH 280, Discrete Mathematics and Proof, 3 Units
This course is a rigorous introduction to discrete mathematics with an emphasis on problem solving and proof writing, preparing students to construct valid mathematical arguments in upperdivision courses. Topics include mathematical logic and set theory; direct and indirect proof; proofs with conjunctions, disjunctions, and quantifiers; relations; equivalence relations and partitions; functions and invertibility; and mathematical induction. Lecture, 3 hours; Discussion, 1 hour.
Prerequisite: MATH 165
MATH 290, Linear Algebra, 3 Units
An introduction to matrix algebra, vector spaces, and linear transformations. Topics include systems of linear equations, subspaces, linear independence, bases and dimension, abstract vector spaces, orthogonality, leastsquares methods, inner product spaces, determinants, eigenvalues, and diagonalization.
MATH 295, Applied Linear Algebra, 3 Units
An introduction to the analysis of numerical algorithms in linear algebra computations, including solution of linear systems, QR decomposition, singular value decomposition, and computation of eigenvalues and eigenvectors.
Prerequisite: MATH 162
MATH 299, Linear Algebra Fundamentals for Statistics, 1 Unit
An introduction to fundamental topics in linear algebra required for statistical courses such as linear and generalized linear models. Topics also include introduction to vectors and matrices, basic matrix operations, methods to solve linear systems, LU/QR decomposition, singular value decomposition, and computation of eigenvalues and eigenvectors.
Prerequisite: Acceptance in M.S. in Applied Statistics and Analytics program.
MATH 301, Mathematics for Secondary Teachers, 3 Units
A survey of the foundations of mathematics essential to the secondary school teacher. This course integrates secondary mathematics concepts with problemsolving strategies and technology. Students expand on their understanding of core math concepts, evaluate lesson plans used in secondary school mathematics, discuss and reflect on effective mathematics pedagogy, analyze readings in the field, engage in collegial interactions with the instructor and fellow students, and develop a repertoire of classroomtested lessons that can be used in a high school classroom.
MATH 340, Geometry, 3 Units
This course is a study of Euclidean and hyperbolic geometries and their transformations and models. Students learn to write proofs within an axiomatic system and to form conjectures using interactive geometry software.
Prerequisite: MATH 166
MATH 350, Statistical Models, 3 Units
A study of investigative statistics emphasizing the process of data collection and data analysis relevant for science, social science, and mathematics students. The course incorporates case studies from current events and interdisciplinary research, taking a problembased approach to learn how to determine which statistical techniques are appropriate. Topics include nonparametric tests, designing an experiment, multiple regression models, and Bayesian data analysis. Ethics in data analysis and reporting will be considered from a Christian perspective. Additionally, the course includes learning to program using a statistical software package.
Prerequisite: MATH 250
MATH 361, Probability and Statistics I, 3 Units
An introduction to probability and the theory and application of statistics. Topics include probability spaces, counting methods, discrete and continuous distributions, moments, conditional distributions, correlation, the Central Limit Theorem, estimation, and hypothesis testing.
Prerequisite: MATH 162
MATH 362, Probability and Statistics II, 3 Units
A continuation of MATH 361. This course develops additional applications of statistics, including estimation, hypothesis testing, and single and multiple linear regression. Nonparametric and Bayesian methods are introduced.
Prerequisite: MATH 361
MATH 370, Partial Differential Equations, 3 Units
An introduction to Fourier analysis and analytical techniques for solving partial differential equations, with application to physical phenomena.
MATH 375, Dynamical Systems, 3 Units
An introduction to phase plane analysis of first order differential equations and to bifurcations in continuous and discrete systems, with application to various branches of science.
Prerequisite: MATH 270
MATH 390, Number Theory, 3 Units
A study of elementary number theory, with an overview of the history of mathematics. Number theory topics include primes, divisibility, factorization, Diophantine problems, residue systems, theorems of Fermat and Euler, and continued fractions.
Prerequisite: MATH 280
MATH 400, Abstract Algebra, 3 Units
An introduction to groups and rings. Group theory topics include subgroups, cyclic groups, permutation groups, cosets and normal subgroups, factor groups, and homomorphisms. Ring theory topics include subrings and ideals, integral domains and fields, factor rings, and homomorphisms.
Prerequisite: MATH 280 with a C or better
MATH 430, Mathematical Methods for Physics and Engineering, 3 Units
Students learn mathematical methods and their applications to physics problems. Topics include series, complex numbers, linear algebra, generalized vector spaces, vector calculus, special functions, Fourier series, and boundary value problems. The course may be applied towards upperdivision physics or mathematics major requirements.
MATH 450, Real Analysis, 3 Units
This course is an advanced study of the real number system. Topics include completeness, convergence of sequences and series, topology of the real line, continuity, the Intermediate Value Theorem, differentiation, and the Mean Value Theorem.
MATH 455, Numerical Analysis, 3 Units
Numerical and approximation methods are covered, including solutions of functions in single and multivariables, interpolation, numerical differentiation and integration, and numerical methods for differential equations. Applications are programmed using an appropriate language.
MATH 460, Topology, 3 Units
An introduction to topological spaces and their applications. Topics include bases, interior closure, subspace, product, and quotient topologies, continuity and homeomorphisms, metric spaces, connectedness, and compactness, with application to genetics, geography, robotics, and errorcorrecting codes. Additional topics chosen from homotopy theory, knot theory, and compact surfaces.
Prerequisite: MATH 450
MATH 470, Complex Analysis, 3 Units
This course is an introduction to the calculus of functions of one complex variable. Topics include elementary functions, limits, differentiability, series, contour integrals, Cauchy's theorem, conformal mapping, and selected applications.
MATH 480, Writing 3: Mathematical Reading, Writing, and Presentation, 3 Units
In this seminar, students critically analyze journal articles in the field, receive writing instruction, write research and argumentative papers, and prepare effective mathematical presentations. Meets the General Education Requirement: Writing 3: Writing in the Disciplines.
Prerequisite: Junior or Senior Standing
MATH 495, Advanced Topics in Mathematics, 13 Units
This course engages students in focused study of an advanced topic which is not covered in the regular curriculum. The topic varies from semester to semester based on student interest. Possible topics include differential geometry, combinatorics, mathematical modeling, advanced linear algebra, game theory, cryptology, etc. This course may be taken more than once as the topic changes.
Prerequisite: Prerequisite(s) will vary depending upon the topic.
MATH 496, Senior Seminar, 3 Units
This senior seminar course prepares students to understand and express a Christian perspective on issues critical to the mathematics profession. Biblical, theological, and philosophical themes relating to the development and application of mathematics provide a base, while historical biographies and examples supply a context in which students generate a distinctively Christian response to contemporary problems facing a postmodern world. Meets the General Education Requirement: Integrative and Applied Learning.
Prerequisite: Senior standing, completion of Writing 3 (HIST 300 or POLI 300).
MATH 497, Readings, 14 Units
This is a program of study concentrating on assigned readings, discussions, and writing arranged between and designed by a student of upperdivision standing and a fulltime professor. An independent study fee is assessed for each enrollment in this class.
MATH 498, Directed Research, 14 Units
This course provides instruction in research design and technique, and gives students experience in the research process. The 1unit expectation encompasses no fewer than 30 hours of work with accompanying reading, log, writing, and seminar presentation within the department or in a university research symposium. No more than 1 unit may be used to fulfill preparatory readings requirement. An independent study fee is assessed for each enrollment in this class.
Prerequisite: Junior or Senior Standing
MATH 499, Thesis/Project, 14 Units
This is a seniorlevel "capstone" type of independent study/research experience, involving the student in a unique project with a sophisticated level of research, synthesis, analysis, and communication. The 1unit expectation encompasses no fewer than 30 hours of work with accompanying readings, log, instructor discussions, and writing of summary analysis and conclusions. The thesis or project may result in formal thesis, published article, or electronic media. No more than 1 unit may be used to fulfill preparatory readings requirement. An independent study fee is assessed for each enrollment in this class.
Prerequisite: Upperdivision writing intensive course or instructor consent; and junior or senior standing
PHYC 100, Conceptual Physics, 2 Units
This course covers the topics of mechanics, heat, sound, light, electricity and magnetism, an introduction to relativity, and quantum mechanics. Physics concepts and thinking skills are emphasized instead of mathematics. Does not meet the General Education requirement.
PHYC 112, Physics for Difference Makers, 4 Units
This course examines fundamental concepts of physics with illustrations of how these concepts have led to technologies that have drastically changed the world and impacted modern life. The course also examines the nature of science, scientific methods, and how science informs decisionmaking on questions important to society. This course does not carry credit toward a science major or minor.Meets the General Education Requirement: Natural Science, Civic Knowledge and Engagement.
Special Fee Applies
PHYC 115, Physical Science for Teachers, 3 Units
This course focuses on three fundamental concepts of physics: conservation of energy, Newton's laws, and waves. Students will engage in practices of science such as performing experiments, collecting and analyzing data, developing models, and writing and evaluating explanations. Students will also examine the nature of science and learning. Course content is aligned with content, practices, and crosscutting concepts of the Next Generation Science Standards. This course is intended for Liberal Studies majors and does not meet the APU General Education requirement in Natural Science.
PHYC 125, Earth Science Concepts and Applications, 3 Units
This course surveys Earth both inside and out. Topics investigated include Earth's solid surface and interior, the oceans, and Earth's atmosphere and weather patterns. Emphasis is placed on dynamic processes, including human activity that affects the nature of Earth's surface. Students also explore Earth's place in the solar system, the Sun, the stars, and exotic bodies beyond the solar system. Does not meet the APU General Education requirement in Nature.
PHYC 130, Earth Science, 4 Units
Lecture, 3 hours; Lab, 3 hours: Students survey the physical characteristics of the Earth and the forces acting upon it. The course includes consideration of the Earth's place in space, the nature of its crust and interior, the processes that affect its structure, and humanity's role in the processes.Meets the General Education Requirement: Natural Science.
Special Fee Applies
PHYC 140, Introduction to Astronomy, 4 Units
Lecture, 3 hours; Lab, 3 hours: This course introduces the history of astronomy, the solar system, the stellar systems, galactic systems, and cosmology. A lab is included.Meets the General Education Requirement: Natural Science.
Special Fee Applies
PHYC 151, Physics for Life Sciences I, 4 Units
Lecture, 3 hours; Lab, 3 hours: This noncalculus physics course develops the topics of translational and rotational mechanics and provides an introduction to thermodynamics.Meets the General Education Requirement: Natural Science.
Special Fee Applies
Prerequisite: MATH 110 or an equivalent score on the APU mathematics placement assessment. High school geometry and trigonometry are highly recommended.
PHYC 152, Physics for Life Sciences II, 4 Units
Lecture, 3 hours; Lab, 3 hours: This noncalculus physics course develops the topics of waves, sound, light, electricity and magnetism, quantum theory, and structure of matter.
Special Fee Applies
Prerequisite: PHYC 151
PHYC 161, Physics for Science and Engineering I, 5 Units
Students in this course are introduced to various areas of physics using basic differential and integral calculus. Topics include kinematics, Newton's laws, conservation of energy, conservation of momentum, and rotation.Lecture, 4 hours; lab, 3 hours. Meets the General Education Requirement: Natural Science.
Special Fee Applies
Corequisite: MATH 165 or equivalent calculus background; high school physics or universitylevel conceptual physics strongly recommended.
PHYC 162, Physics for Science and Engineering II, 5 Units
Students in this course are introduced to various areas of physics using basic differential and integral calculus. Topics include oscillations, electricity, and magnetism.Lecture, 4 hours; lab, 3 hours.
Special Fee Applies
Prerequisite: PHYC 161 and MATH 166 (may be taken concurrently)
PHYC 263, Physics for Science and Engineering III, 5 Units
Lecture, 4 hours; Lab, 3 hours: Students are introduced to various aspects of physics using basic differential and integral calculus. Topics covered include thermodynamics, special relativity, vibrations and waves, optics, and nuclear and modern physics.
Special Fee Applies
Prerequisite: PHYC 162
PHYC 300, Physics Research Seminar, 1 Unit
This course surveys the major fields of modern physics research in a seminar format, with special attention to how physicists identify research questions and plan for research. The course culminates in a research proposal for the student's thesis. Meets the General Education Requirement: Integrative and Applied Learning.
Prerequisite: PHYC 263
PHYC 361, Electricity and Magnetism, 3 Units
Students study the fundamental concepts of electricity and magnetism, electrostatic fields in a vacuum and dielectric materials, solutions of Laplace's and Poisson's equations, and electromagnetic waves.
PHYC 370, Waves and Optics, 3 Units
Students study mechanical and electromagnetic waves and explore topics such as geometric optics, wave propagation, interference, diffraction, polarization, coherence, holography, and topics from nonlinear optics.
Prerequisite: PHYC 263, MATH 270 and MATH 263 (may be taken concurrently)
PHYC 380, Classical Mechanics, 4 Units
Students in this course apply mathematical methods commonly used in physics modeling and analysis to the study of particles experiencing linear and quadratic drag, momentum, energy, driven oscillations, central force motion, rigidbody rotation, and Lagrangian dynamics. The mathematical methods used include infinite series, complex numbers, linear algebra, curvilinear coordinates, vector calculus, Fourier analysis, partial differential equations, variational calculus, and numerical methods.
PHYC 401, Thermodynamics, 3 Units
Students learn the theoretical basis of classical thermodynamics and statistical mechanics including the zeroth, first, second, and third laws. These laws are applied to equilibrium systems such as ideal gases, heat engines, chemical reactions, and phase transitions.
Prerequisite: PHYC 263 and MATH 263 (may be taken concurrently)
PHYC 430, Mathematical Methods for Physics and Engineering, 3 Units
Students learn mathematical methods and their applications to physics problems. Topics include series, complex numbers, linear algebra, generalized vector spaces, vector calculus, special functions, Fourier series, and boundary value problems. The course may be applied towards upperdivision physics or mathematics major requirements.
PHYC 431, Computational Methods for Physics, 3 Units
Students in this course develop numerical modeling skills to solve representative problems in mechanics, quantum mechanics, thermal physics, and electromagnetism. The problems solved include multibody dynamics under gravity, Laplace equation, wave equation, Ising model, timeindependent Schrodinger equation, and molecular dynamics.
PHYC 440, Quantum Mechanics, 3 Units
Students are introduced to the timedependent and timeindependent Schrodinger equations. The Schrodinger equation is solved for examples including potential wells and barriers, harmonic oscillators, and hydrogen atoms. These examples illustrate the concepts of quantization of energy and angular momentum, tunneling, wave properties of particles, and the uncertainty principle.
PHYC 470, Writing 3: Advanced Laboratory, 3 Units
This course prepares students for writing scientific journal articles and presenting scientific results to a technical audience. This course also acquaints students with advanced laboratory and analysis techniques. Activities include instruction and practice in scientific writing and presenting scientific information orally.Meets the General Education Requirement: Writing 3: Writing in the Disciplines.
Special Fee Applies
Prerequisite: PHYC 263, Writing 2, and junior or senior standing, or Instructor's consent
PHYC 497, Readings, 14 Units
This is a program of study concentrating on assigned readings, discussions, and writing arranged between and designed by a student of upperdivision standing and a fulltime professor. An independent study fee is assessed for each enrollment in this class.
PHYC 498, Directed Research, 14 Units
This course provides instruction in research design and technique, and gives students experience in the research process. The 1unit expectation encompasses no fewer than 30 hours of work with accompanying reading, log, writing, and seminar presentation within the department or in a university research symposium. No more than 1 unit may be used to fulfill preparatory readings requirement. An independent study fee is assessed for each enrollment in this class.
Prerequisite: Junior or Senior Standing
PHYC 499, Physics Thesis, 14 Units
The student engages in an original research project in collaboration with a faculty member. Projects may be experimental, theoretical, or computational in nature. Projects will expand upon learning from previous courses in the major and apply that learning to make a novel contribution to the field. Successful completion of the course will result in completion of a journalstyle article and/or professionallevel poster presentation. Meets the General Education Requirement: Integrative and Applied Learning.
Prerequisite: PHYC 300
Faculty
Department Chair
Bryant Mathews, Ph.D., Mathematics
Professors
Mark Arvidson, Ph.D., Mathematics
Christopher Bassey, Ph.D., Physics
Bryant Mathews, Ph.D., Mathematics
Bradley McCoy, Ph.D., Physics
Rodney Sturdivant, Ph.D., Mathematics
Associate Professors
Edwin Ding, Ph.D., Mathematics
Sharon McCathern, Ph.D., Mathematics
Theodore Szeto, Ph.D., Associate Dean
Sandor VolkanKacso, Ph.D., Physics
Assistant Professors
Enson Chang, Ph.D., Physics
Andre Harmse, Ph.D., Mathematics
Lecturer
Elizabeth Rivas, M.A., Mathematics
Affiliated Faculty
Kathleen Bacer, Ed.D., Mathematics
Donald Isaak, Ph.D., Physics
Adjunct Faculty
Lynette Blakely, M.A.
Robert Campbell, M.A.
Brian Croissant, M.S.
Andrea Hammond, M.A.
Erica Kristy, B.A.
Anna Kwak, Ed.D.
Tricia McCorkle, M.A.
Douglas McElroy, Ph.D.
Matt Micek, M.A.
Derek Morrison, M.A.
Steven Moser, M.S.
Danielle Nazaroff, M.A.
Leonard Popp, M.S.
Yeojin Rho, M.A.
Amanda Sinner, M.A.
Molly Swanson, M.A.
Alyssa Thornton, B.S.