A Catholic and Marianist Liberal Arts Institution

2011-2012: Undergraduate Catalog

Physics Download PDF Version

Academic Year

2011-2012

School

School of Science, Engineering and Technology School Web site

School Dean

Winston F. Erevelles, Ph.D. werevelles@stmarytx.edu

Department

Physics

Department Chair

Richard Cardenas, Ph.D. rcardenas@stmarytx.edu

Description of Program/Major

Physics is the study of an enormous span of natural phenomena ranging from the large scale involvement of galaxies to the the submicroscopic motion of atoms and nuclei. A major in physics at St. Mary's University prepares students with a broad based view of science, as well as the analytical tools necessary to tackle problems in many different fields. Physics is an intensive course of study that emphasizes analytical and problem solving skills. Students have the opportunity to acquire a degree either in physics or applied physics.

The Bachelor of Arts in physics is usually chosen by students who wish to teach high school physics. The applied physics degree has an option in computer science or electrical engineering. Applied physics is a Bachelor of Science degree plan that provides an instructional base in physics, engineering, mathematics and computer applications. It prepares students to enter today's high technology marketplace upon graduation. Along with technical courses, students in the program benefit from liberal arts courses in English, social science, philosophy, theology, speech, foreign language and fine arts.

Degree Requirements

Core Curriculum (SMC)
St. Mary's University Core (30 Hours)
All St. Mary's Core SMC13## "Reflection" courses must be completed before registering for SMC23## "Practice" courses. "Reflection" courses can be taken in any order followed by "Practice" courses in any order.
SMC 1301Foundations of Civilization3
SMC 1311Foundations of Reflection: Self (Formerly PL 1310)3
SMC 1312Foundations of Reflection: Nature3
SMC 1313Foundations of Reflection: Others3
SMC 1314Foundations of Reflection: God (Formerly TH 2301)3
SMC 2301Foundations of Practice: Ethics (Formerly PL 2332)3
SMC 2302Foundations of Practice: Civic Engagement and Social Action3
SMC 2303Foundations of Practice: Fine Arts and Creative Process (Formerly FA 1101, FA 1102, FA 1103)3
SMC 2304Foundations of Practice: Literature3
SMC 4301Capstone Seminar: Prospects for Community and Civilization3

School Specific Core (SSC)
School of Science, Engineering, and Technology Specific Core (21 Hours)

SpeechSE 1321 (for international students), SE 1341, SE 2333, SE 33913
Composition and Rhetoric (grade of "C" or better)EN 1311, EN 1313 (for international students)3
Foreign LanguagesSix hours at the sophomore level (2311, 2312) in a Foreign Language previously studied for a minimum of one year; Or, 6 hours of introductory level (1311, 1312) in a Foreign Language not previously studied; Or, 12 hours of CLEP credit for a language previously studied.6
Social ScienceBA 1310, BA 3325, CJ 2300, CJ 3300, EC 2301, EC 2303, PO 1311, PO 1312, PO 1314, PS 1301, PS 3386, SC/CR 1311, SC 3321, HU 3300, HU 33033
TheologyAdvanced Theology 33XX3
Fine ArtsAR, DM, MU or Literature: EN 2321, 2322, 2353, 2354, 2355, 23563

Four Year Degree Plan

Department Courses and Descriptions

Department Courses and Descriptions
PY 1300 Physics Concepts & Application (3)
Designed to convey the considerable bearing physical laws have on common experience. Applications in trades, professions and industry are provided. Directed to ward non-science majors to help them evaluate the evidence of their own experience and see the pervasiveness of physics in virtually every aspect of technological society. Topics: Motion, Gravity, Relativity, Energy and Power, Energy Resources, Waves, Sound and Electricity.

PY 1310 Modern Astronomy (3)
A course that will be of interest to students not majoring in science, engineering or mathematics as well as those majoring in these fields. This course deals mainly with stellar and galactic astronomy but begins with a brief survey of our solar system including orbits and Kepler's laws. The emphasis is placed upon how compositions, ages and evolution are deduced. The course will be somewhat quantitative but the mathematical requirements are minimal.

PY 1401 General Physics I (4)
First semester: mechanics, sound and heat. Second semester: electricity, light, atomic and nuclear physics. Intended for non-physics and non-engineering students. (Lecture 3 hours; Lab 4 hours.) (PHYS 1401)

PY 1402 General Physics II (4)
First semester: mechanics, sound and heat. Second semester: electricity, light, atomic and nuclear physics. Intended for non-physics and non-engineering students. (Lecture 3 hours; Lab 4 hours.) (PHYS 1402)

PY 1404 Mechanics, Heat Acoustics (4)
Calculus based physics. (Lecture 3 hours; Lab 4 hours.) Co-requisite MT 2412 (PHYS 2425)

PY 2404 Electricity, Magnetism, Optics (4)
Calculus based physics. (Lecture 3 hours; Lab 4 hours.) Prerequisites PY1404, MT 2412 (PHYS 2426)

PY 3101 Atomic Physics Lab (1)
(Lab 4 hours per week; usually concurrent with PY 3301.)

PY 3102 Nuclear Physics Lab (1)
(Lab 4 hours per week; usually concurrent with PY 3302.)

PY 3113 Electronics Lab I (1)
Same as EG 3156

PY 3114 Electronics Laboratory II (1)
Same as EG 3157

PY 3125 Special Topics Laboratory (1)


PY 3301 Atomic Physics (3)
Special relativity, electrons and quanta, Quantum Theory, Schrödinger's Equation, x-rays -spectra. Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses.

PY 3302 Nuclear Physics (3)
Radio activity, Rutherford scattering, nuclear atom, radiation detectors, nuclear reaction, alpha decay, beta decay, gamma radiation, nuclear models, accelerators. Prerequisite: PY 3301. Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses.

PY 3304 Thermodynamics (3)
States and processes, equations of state, internal energy, enthalpy, the ideal gas, incompressible substances, entropy and the second law, second law analysis, thermodynamics relationships, engineering applications. Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses.

PY 3305 Physical Optics (3)
Wave theory, interference, diffraction, polarization, spectroscopy, and photometry. Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses.

PY 3307 Mechanics (3)
Vector approach to Newtonian mechanics. Static and Kinetics. Introduction to the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian approach. Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses.

PY 3308 Quantum Mechanics (3)
Schrodinger wave equation, stationary state solutions, the hydrogen atom, angular momentum, perturbation theory. Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses.

PY 3309 Electromagnetics (3)
Vector analysis, electrostatics, dielectrics, magnetostatics, Maxwell’s equation, wave propagation, radiation. Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses.

PY 3313 Electronics (3)
Theory of semiconductors; discrete devices and integrated circuits; linear and digital operation. (EG 2341, EG 2152, EG 2352, EG 2353 are prerequisites.) Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses. (same as EG3356)

PY 3314 Electronics (3)
Theory of semiconductors; discrete devices and integrated circuits; linear and digital operation. (EG 2341, EG 2152, EG 2352, EG 2353 are prerequisites.) Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses. (same as EG3357)

PY 3325 Special Topics (3)
This course is used to introduce special topics of interest. Topics in past have included the following: Particle Physics, Biophysics, Functional Neuro imaging, Fiesta of Physics Outreach, Advanced Electromagnetric theory and Advanced Quantum Mechanics. Note: PY 1404 and PY 2404 are prerequisites and MT 3311 is a co-requisite for 3000 level physics courses.

Department Faculty

Physics Faculty Website

Department Website

Physics Website


Copyright © 2012 St. Mary's University. Contact the webmaster.