BA in Philosophy & Physics

With this joint major, the Physics and Philosophy Departments enable students to engage with the fundamental, philosophical questions underlying modern physics: the study of matter and energy, and how they interact. This joint degree program provides a framework within which students can better understand some of the more theoretical aspects of the field of physics.


All required courses are 4 credits unless otherwise indicated.


  • One course in philosophy (PH) at the 100 level
  • CAS PY 251 Principles of Physics 1
  • CAS PY 252  Principles of Physics 2
  • CAS MA 123 Calculus 1
  • CAS MA 124 Calculus 2

Course Requirements

At least five courses in philosophy and eight courses in physics/mathematics, with a grade of C or higher, are required.

The following philosophy courses are required:

  • CAS PH 270 Philosophy of Science or CAS PH 487 Topics in the Philosophy of Science
  • CAS PH 300 History of Ancient Philosophy
  • CAS PH 310 History of Modern Philosophy
  • either CAS PH 360 Symbolic Logic or PH 468 Philosophical Problems of Logic and Mathematics
  • CAS PH 470 Philosophy of Physics, or a directed study in philosophy

The following physics and mathematics courses are required:

  • CAS MA 225 Multivariate Calculus
  • CAS PY 351 Modern Physics I
  • CAS PY 355 Methods of Theoretical Physics
  • CAS PY 405 Electromagnetic Fields and Waves I
  • CAS PY 406 Electromagnetic Fields and Waves II
  • CAS PY 408 Intermediate Mechanics
  • CAS PY 451 Quantum Physics I
  • CAS PY 452 Quantum Physics II