Physics PhD Program
Upon completion of the PhD Program, graduates will be able to lead efforts in academia and industry in the areas of condensed matter physics, applied physics and materials science. The graduates receive their degree having made significant contributions to the advancement of knowledge in a particular area of research. Courses and seminars provide necessary background in the basic principles, methods and theories of physics. Initial research emphasis will be in the energy sciences, biophysics, and information sciences with the intent to leverage significant research infrastructure investment recently established under the Small Scale Systems Integration and Packaging Center at Binghamton University.
Most of the basic graduate courses in a student's program should be taken during the first year of residence. Proficiency in Solid State Physics, Quantum Mechanics, Electrodynamics, Statistical Thermodynamics and Communication Skills will be attained through classroom study, research and teaching.
The requirements for the doctoral degree include a total of at least twenty-four credit hours of course study (six to eight courses) and at least twenty-four additional credits of dissertation work. The specific course requirements will be determined in consultation with the student's guidance committee (a committee consisting of three Physics faculty members, one of whom is the student's principal advisor). These course requirements must be approved by the graduate program committee, and will normally include those expected for the Masters degree in Physics.
PhD required courses
These course requirements must be approved by the graduate program committee, and will normally include:
PHYS 522 – Electrodynamics I
PHYS 524 – Quantum Mechanics I
PHYS 527 – Graduate Lab
PHYS 572 – Solid State Physics
PHYS 592 – Communications
PHYS 631 – Statistical Mechanics I
Most of the basic graduate courses in a student's program should be taken during the first year of residence. Proficiency in Solid State Physics, Quantum Mechanics, Electrodynamics, Statistical Thermodynamics and Communication Skills will be attained through classroom study, research and teaching. To advance to doctoral candidacy, each student will be required to demonstrate competency in these core areas via a written Qualifying Exam and through the oral defense of a written research proposal. Students will, under the guidance of a faculty member, conduct independent research publishable in an archival journal, and communicate their results in dissertation and presentation forms (PHYS 592). All students will be required to write a dissertation and defend it in a public oral defense before their guidance committee.
Students will generally enroll full-time and complete the degree in four to six years. Typically this will involve two semesters of first year graduate courses and a teaching assistantship in introductory Physics courses. All graduate students in Physics attend and participate in seminars presented by fellow students, faculty, and visiting scientists, and attend professional meetings (PHYS 501). The second year in the program may be seen as transitional, including elective courses and potentially a second year of a teaching assistantship, with a growing focus on a research problem. By the end of the second year, the preliminary examination, including a presentation of a proposed dissertation topic, is completed. Dissertation research, writing a dissertation and a public defense complete the degree requirements.