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The Department of Physics offers students the opportunity to pursue some of nature’s deepest secrets.  Physics students discover the structures and interactions that constitute the Universe, from the smallest components inside atoms to the largest galaxies, and from living cells to new materials.

UR: A Great Physics Department

  • The American Institute of Physics has named UR's Physics Department to its list of large programs.  We have a high number of majors!
  • We teach engaging introductory classes in a small workshop format, intellectually sophisticated advanced theory and laboratory courses, special topics courses, and first-year seminars.
  • Our faculty and students publish research in journals and present at conferences and universities throughout the country and around the world.
  • Our faculty are awarded grants from the National Science Foundation, Department of Energy, and other sources, and serve in leadership positions in their fields.

The Physics Department has instituted a registration policy for PHYS 131 and 132. Students interested in either of these courses should read the updated policy on the department blog.

Physics: Great Career Preparation


No matter what you have planned for your future, a physics education can provide you with a great foundation.

Undergraduate physics majors have:

  • The second-highest average MCAT score. Only economics majors scored higher.
  • The second-highest average LSAT score. Only mathematics majors scored higher.
  • The highest mean GMAT score.
  • One of the highest starting salaries for bachelor's degree recipients.
  • Excellent prospects for graduate study in physics, engineering, applied mathematics, astronomy, and other fields.

More Career Information

Department News

Congratulations to our 2021 Physics graduates who have been accepted to great graduate programs in physics, materials science, and engineering, and have exciting job and fellowship offers and other accomplishments!

Congratulations to UR Physics Alum Ben Crider (`06) who has received a prestigious NSF CAREER award!  While an undergrad at UR Ben did research in nuclear physics.  He is now a professor at Mississippi State University.

Feature Stories

Faculty Highlights

  • Gilfoyle Published

    Jerry Gilfoyle, the Robert Edward and Lana Frazer Loving Chair of Physics, published "Electron-Beam Energy Reconstruction for Neutrino Oscillation Measurements," in Nature.

  • Dias Published

    Mariama Rebello de Sousa Dias, assistant professor of physics, published an article entitled, "Transient Structural Colors with Magnesium-Based Reflective Filters" in the journal of Advanced Optical Materials.

  • Dias and Undergraduates Published

    Mariama Rebello de Sousa Dias, assistant professor of physics, along with Molly Kate Kreider, ‘22; Abdul Qadeer Rehan, ‘21; and Robert. M. Kent ‘20 published "Al-Au Thin Films for Thermally Stable and Highly Sensitive Plasmonic Sensors" in the Journal of Physical Chemistry.

  • Singal Published

    Jack Singal, associate professor of physics, published the article “Machine Learning Classification to Identify Catastrophic Outlier Photometric Redshift Estimates” in the Astrophysical Journal.

  • Dias Published

    Mariama Rebello de Sousa Dias, assistant professor of physics, recently published "Machine Learning Roadmap for Perovskite Photovoltaics," in The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters.

  • Gilfoyle Awarded Department of Energy Grant

    Jerry Gilfoyle, the Robert Edward and Lana Frazer Loving Chair of Physics,  was awarded a $275K+ Department of Energy grant for nuclear physics research. Read more.

  • Singal Quoted

    Jack Singal, associate professor of physics, was quoted in “China Launches Moon Mission, Seeking to be First Country in Decades to Collect Lunar Rocks" for The Washington Post.

  • Dias Published

    Mariama Rebello Sousa Dias recently published 'Optoelectronic characterization of Zn1-xCdxO thin films as an alternative to photonic crystals in organic solar cells' in The Optical Society.

  • Astrophysics Jack Singal, physics professor who worked at NASA, can discuss the legacy of the Moon Landing and all we have learned about the moon since then.
  • Rocketry Jerry Gilfoyle, a physics professor, has worked on policy touching on rocketry with regards to nuclear arms proliferation and the associated missile technology.

Contact Information

Mailing address:
Department of Physics
Gottwald Center for the Sciences
138 UR Drive
University of Richmond, VA 23173

Phone:
(804) 289-8252
Fax: (804) 484-1542

Administrative coordinator: Stacy Hull
Chair: Matt Trawick