Graduate Studies

Master of Science Degree Programs

  • Master of Science Degree: Natural and Applied Science, Physics Concentration

Graduate education at Stephen F. Austin State University is viewed as an extremely important step following the undergraduate experience. The goal of the University is to stimulate the graduate student to seek a deeper understanding of the student's chosen field of study so that an enjoyable and productive life may be more easily attainable. Thus, the graduate course of study consists both of instruction and research pursued in an atmosphere of uninhibited intellectual inquiry.

  • Graduate Physics Required Courses:
    • PHYS 5312 - Atomic Structures
    • PHYS 5431 - Classical Mechanics
    • PHYS 5432 - Electromagnetic Waves
    • PHYS 5451 - Advanced Quantum Mechanics
    • One from: PHYS 5311 - Nuclear Physics, PHYS 5334 - Solid State Physics, or PHYS 5350 - Intro to Quantum Mechanics

For more information and to apply:

Graduate Study in Physics

The graduate program is truly unique in that students have tremendous freedom in selecting their courses from within and outside of the department. This means a student can focus on the mathematical connections to physics, education of physics, application of physics in geology and forestery, etc. Please look at some of the options in the degree plans:

Sample Graduate Degree Plans

Facilities for Graduate Work

The Department of Physics, Engineering, and Astronomy occupies the second floor of the STEM Building on the Stephen F. Ausitn State University campus. In addition, research laboraties are housed on the second and third floors in the same building, as well as, in Miller Science Building. Each graduate assistant will have a office shared with one or two other graduate assistants, with their professors' offices nearby. Each graduate assistant has a desktop computer with internet access, as well as access to other shared computers around the depatment. The STEM building is developed to foster collaboration with numerious open and inviting shared study spaces.

Graduate Assistantships

A number of graduate teaching assistantships are awarded each year by the Department. This also includes a full tuition waiver through our LEAP program.

Graduate teaching assistants duties include grading for faculty, serving in department labs, assisting with a professor's classes, or serving as a research assistant for a professor.

Summer support is generally available for continuing graduate students. More information on graduate assistantships and employment can be found here on the Graduate School website.

Graduate Faculty

Our faculty's fields of interest are broad and it is encouraged to view the faculty bios for more information here.

Graduation Requirements and Forms

Check the current Graduate Bulletin for the most up-to-date program requirements; also see the Graduation Checklist. A degree plan must also be filed.


Students in the graduate program may complete a thesis as part of their program of study. Thesis proposals must be approved by the department chair. Once completed, theses are approved by a committee of faculty members approved by the Department and the Office of Graduate Studies and Research. Forms must be filed well in advance of thesis completion; see the Office of Graduate Studies and Research website for dates. Departmental forms are available below.

Theses must be formatted according to Graduate School guidelines. See the Graduate School's Thesis Guides and Forms site for more information. A LaTeX template is given at beamer theme and a thesis template.

Final Culminating Requirement for the Graduate Degree

A culminating comprehensive oral and/or written examination is required in the final semester of summer session of enrollment for students in the graduate program. It is University policy that the student must be registered during the semester or summer session in which he or she takes this final examination.

For a comprehensive oral examination, the student is responsible for arranging the date, time and the membership of the examining committee in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator. The examining committee will consist of departmental graduate faculty members. Other graduate faculty may be appointed by the Graduate Dean/Associate Provost.

If a retake of the oral or written examination is required, the student will be notified as quickly as possible following the examination and a date for the retake must be decided within the two-week period following this notification. A student who fails to satisfy the culminating requirement after two retakes will not be awarded the degree.

If the student writes a thesis, the successful defense of the theses will satisfy this culminating requirement.