Researchers working at computers around the Cloud Chamber in the Cloud Chamber lab

Undergraduate Experience

Answer The Big Questions

Physicists take on the big questions to discover how the universe works—from the smallest particles to the largest galaxies. Physicists experiment, observe, and analyze phenomena using mathematical and computational tools. They are well versed in programming, data analytics, and predictive modeling.

Physicists apply critical thinking and logical reasoning skills. In short, they solve problems. The ability to solve problems can be applied to many fields beyond physics, including computer science, engineering, finance, and more.

A degree in physics will provide you with a diverse range of career opportunities. Physicists work in academic and government labs as well as in industry as engineers, data scientists, programmers, and analysts. Use your acquired skills and knowledge to analyze financial markets for a financial services firm, or use your foundational physics knowledge to pursue careers in other fields like medicine, education, law, business, and more.

The areas of study within the Physics Department—physics and applied physics—help you to develop analytical, critical thinking, laboratory, and research skills, blending the theoretical and practical aspects of physics you’ll need to be successful. Career outcomes for physics and related fields—including job placement and starting and median salaries are excellent.

Bachelor’s Degrees

Physics— BS

Discover how our world works— from the smallest particles to the largest galaxies. Physics degree students explore the physical models behind the behavior of our universe. You’ll learn the fundamentals of physics. The BS option focuses on a breadth and depth of core physics knowledge. Often, physics BS degree-seeking students are preparing for graduate studies in the field.

Physics— BA

With a BA degree in physics, you’ll learn how our world works, while being able to take advantage of the flexibility of a traditional liberal arts education. Students pursuing the physics BA option often plan to use their degree in another field like law, medicine, education or business.

Applied Physics—BS

With a BS degree in applied physics you’ll acquire a solid physics foundation with the freedom to explore an interdisciplinary area of interest, like astrophysics, materials science, or nanotechnology, to name a few. You’ll work with your academic advisor to incorporate your application area interests into your coursework. Applied physics students typically go on to graduate studies in physics and/or work in materials science, energy, aerospace, chemical and environmental industries, or at national labs.

  • 6:1
    student-faculty ratio
  • 45%
    of physics students engage in summer research
  • #32
    most valuable college major
  • #3
    best college in Michigan

Ready to take the next step?

Learn more about the physics undergraduate degrees at Michigan's flagship technological university.


Specialize in a secondary discipline outside of or complementary to your major, expand your knowledge base, and boost your potential career options with a physics minor Want a future career in law or medicine? A minor in a pre-professional program such as Law and Society or Pre-Health prepares you for graduate school. Or choose any of the other 80+ minors. Although you can declare a minor anytime, we recommend that you begin your minor studies as early as possible in your academic career. To learn more, speak to an academic advisor.

  • Astrophysics
  • Nanoscale Sciences and Engineering
  • Physics

Undergraduate Advising

A positive and productive advising relationship is a key component of your success at Michigan Tech. You and your academic advisor will develop your academic plan, and your advisor will help you follow and complete your plan to ensure your success at Michigan Tech.

Physics Advising

Study Physics at a Technological University

Gain foundational knowledge and understand the behavior of matter and energy. Develop analytical and quantitative skills required to succeed in graduate school or the job market.  

  • Get personalized attention: With an average incoming class of 20 physics majors, your professors know you individually and understand your interests and needs. You receive the one-to-one guidance you need in a timely fashion.
  • Customize your physics education: At Michigan Tech, our Bachelor of Science degrees prepare you for a career in STEM or to pursue an advanced degree. Our Bachelor of Arts degree provides a strong foundation in physics with the flexibility to prepare for a professional career in a wide variety of fields. Our degree programs pair well with studies in mathematics, computer science, electrical engineering, and materials science. Physics majors can add minors in Astrophysics and Nanoscale Physics to further your specialization.
  • Get paid for summer research: A commitment to undergraduate research experience gives our students an edge. As soon as the summer after your first year, join one of many research groups and turn your growing knowledge into practical experience under the guidance of a faculty member in our state-of-the-art labs. Gain hands-on experience with state-of-the-art research instrumentation, data analysis, and modern computational methods.
  • Physics Study Abroad: Visit international research labs like CERN, home of the Large Hadron Collider, the most powerful particle accelerator ever built.
  • Get involved: Utilize your interest in physics by getting involved with the Enterprise Program—teams of undergraduate students working on real-world products and research for industry. Or get involved with any number of student or professional organizations—Society of Physics Students; Women in Physics; Keweenaw Rocket Range; Pre-Health Association; and more.

Tomorrow Needs You

Supercharge your physics skills to meet the demands of a technology-driven society at a flagship public research university powered by science, technology, engineering, and math. Graduate with the theoretical knowledge and practical experience needed to solve real-world problems and succeed in academia, research, and tomorrow's high-tech business landscape.

"I’ve always wanted to be a scientist. And I felt that, to answer the big questions about the universe which I always wanted to answer, the most realistic way to do that was to go into physics."Cameron Shock, physics