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Graduate Program in Physics

A way to see the world in a grain of sand.

Graduate Program in Physics

A way to see the world in a grain of sand.

Student repairing laser equipment in lab

Graduate students in physics learn from world-class physicists in a vibrant and diverse department comprising a broad range of experimental and theoretical physics. The Graduate Program has 40 graduate students and 17 faculty. The Department of Physics awards M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in physics. Our physics faculty are internationally recognized for leading research programs in condensed matter experiment and theory, optical physics, biophysics, astrophysics, gravitational wave physics, quantum cosmology and quantum physics, high energy physics and physics education research. Physics graduate students participate in a rigorous and wide-ranging program of study that affords them numerous opportunities to present their research at national and international conferences as well as research internships in labs beyond OSU.

Doctoral students receive financial support, including health insurance, through research and teaching assistantships. In addition, several graduate students receive prestigious university fellowships and other external awards. Our graduate students are very successful in finding jobs in leading research labs, academia and in technology sectors.

Meet our students and alumni

Oregon State leading $17M effort to understand universe via low-frequency gravitational waves

Funded by the NSF as a Physics Frontiers Center, the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves, or NANOGrav, research group at OSU operates under the direction of Xavier Siemens, professor of physics.

Oregon State alum plays integral role in Perseverance landing

2005 physics alumna and planetary geologist Briony Horgan's research was key to determining the location on Mars for the Perseverance rover to explore. Explaining the challenge her team faced, she said, "“If we had to choose just one spot on Earth to gather all the data about the entire history of the planet — well, where would you go?”

Meet a Science Grad - Drew Haven

Meet Drew Haven, physics and engineering physics graduate and current Research & Development Manager for Saint-Gobain Crystals.  

Two physics graduate students win 2019 NASA grants

Two College of Science graduate students have received prestigious NASA Earth and Space Science and Technology awards in 2019.

Research by OSU biophysicist shows how tissue's microscopic geometry affects spread of cancer

Research led by Bo Sun, associate professor in the Department of Physics, has revealed a crucial mechanism behind one of humankind’s most deadly physiological processes: the movement of malignant cells from one part of the body to another.

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