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Physics Professor Howard Georgi Director of Undergraduate Studies The concentration in Physics administered by the Department of Physics serves a variety of goals and interests Many concentrators seek an understanding of the subtle profound and fundamental laws relativity quantum mechanics and the basic force laws that govern the behavior of all matter Often these studies involve the smallest units of matter molecules atoms nuclei and subnuclear particles A major interest of other Physics concentrators is the exploration and explanation of the diverse properties to which these laws give rise in macroscopic systems such as fluids and solids Still others study aspects of more complex systems like oceans and atmospheres stars and living matter A concentration in Physics provides a foundation for subsequent professional work in physics and also for work in astronomy biophysics chemical physics engineering and applied physics earth and planetary sciences geology astrophysics and the history and philosophy of science Less obviously perhaps the intellectual attitudes in physics blending imagination prediction observation and deduction provide an excellent base for subsequent graduate work in professional schools of medicine education law business and public administration It should be emphasized that since all the physical sciences require basic training in physics and mathematics an early choice of concentration need not be a final one It is quite possible to design a program that will permit a change in concentration at the end of the sophomore year or even later For example a student who has satisfied most of the requirements for a concentration in astronomy probably has also satisfied most of the physics requirements as well and vice versa The department tries to provide the essential content of undergraduate physics in concentrated form leaving students sufficient time to develop interests through related courses offered by other science departments to pursue more

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