Physics, Master of Science
The Department of Physics offers a research-intensive, two-year program leading to the Master of Science degree. During the two years in the program, students are required to demonstrate proficiency in the core areas (Electromagnetism, Statistical Mechanics, Quantum Mechanics, Classical Mechanics), and be involved in significant, potentially publication-worthy research activity, which is expected to culminate in a thesis. Many students admitted to our program are awarded competitive stipends and serve as teaching assistants.
The low student-to-faculty ratio and the department's dedication to excellence in teaching and research assure that graduate students are an integral part of the department and work closely with faculty in achieving their educational goals. Students interested in doing a Ph.D. are able to use our program as a gateway to top-quality Ph.D. programs in physics and engineering. Others gain entry into industry or take up positions in national labs, or instructor positions in universities and high schools.
Proficiency is expected in the areas of quantum physics, classical mechanics, electromagnetic theory, statistical physics, and mathematical techniques used in physics. Evidence of proficiency means successful completion of courses at the 500- or 600-level or equivalent. Graduate coursework is selected in consultation with the thesis director (thesis option) and graduate program director and approved in writing by the graduate program director. The main source for graduate student information is provided in the departmental Graduate Student Handbook, which is shared with current graduate students and faculty via the Google Drive.
Graduate credit is given for courses offered at the 500- and 600-level. Courses at the 500-level are designed for students requiring advanced undergraduate material that they have not covered, prior to entering 600-level course work. For all official information and course descriptions, please consult the Miami General Bulletin.
PHY 521 - Molecular and Cellular Biophysics - Spring, even years
PHY 527 - Nano-Scale Science & Technology - Fall, irregular
PHY 530 - Topics in Physics - Irregular, only offer if we have the personnel
PHY 537 - Thermodynamics & Statistical Physics - Fall
PHY 541 - Optics and Laser Physics - Spring
PHY 551 - Classical Mechanics - Fall
PHY 561 - Electromagnetic Theory - Spring
PHY 567 - Seismology, Irregular
PHY 571 - Advanced Electronics - Irregular
PHY 581 - Gravitation and Space Time - Spring, odd years
PHY 583 - Mathematical Methods in Physics - Fall
PHY 586 - Advanced Computational Physics - Fall
PHY 591 - Intro to Quantum Mechanics - Spring
PHY 610 - Research - Fall, Spring, & Summer
PHY 620 - Special Topics - Fall
PHY 623 - Solid State Physics - Spring, irregular
PHY 642 - Adv. Kinetic Theory & Statistical Mechanics - Spring, odd years
PHY 651 - Quantum and Nonlinear Optics - Spring, irregular, even years
PHY 671 - Electromagnetism - Fall, odd years
PHY 691 - Modern Quantum Physics - Fall, even years
PHY 692 - Modern Quantum Physics II - Spring, irregular, even years
PHY 700 - Research for the Master's Thesis - Fall, Spring, Summer
NOTE: Occasionally, some courses may be offered in the alternate semester of the academic year. Check with your advisor to plan your schedule.
- Communicate clearly;
- Use appropriate mathematical techniques and physics concepts to obtain quantitative solutions to problems. The students should be able to solve physics problems in the following core areas: classical mechanics, electromagnetism, statistical mechanics & thermodynamics, and quantum mechanics;
- Demonstrate critical thinking by conducting original scientific investigations and producing a thesis based on this research.
A minimum of 30 semester hours of graduate coursework, research, and thesis credit is required. You must complete at least two 600-level courses in physics other than PHY 610, and a minimum of six hours of PHY 700. Before registering for PHY 700, you must write a thesis proposal and defend it before your thesis committee. Subsequent completion and defense of the thesis is required.
A minimum of 36 semester hours of graduate credit is required. Any credits earned in PHY 700 may not be counted toward the minimum of 36 hours. Completion of at least four 600-level courses in physics other than PHY 610 is required. The student must also pass a comprehensive examination for the non-thesis option.
Contact and additional information: Dr. Mahmud Khan, khanm2@MiamiOH.edu, Graduate Director for Physics
Master's Degree Research
Are you wondering, “How do I get into the best Ph.D. programs in physics?” Or, “I want to go into industry after I graduate, but how do I acquire the research experience to qualify?”
Apply to the MS program in physics at Miami University.
- Miami Physics consistently ranks in the top five (of 62 terminal MS departments in physics) to graduate the largest number of physics majors.
- The Physics MS program is one of eleven “top-tier” programs among forty graduate programs at Miami as ranked by the Graduate School.
- In the past ten years, 95 MS students graduated from our program; 65 students entered PhD programs and 25 entered the STEM workforce. Our program served as a "gateway" to top-quality physics PhD programs, such as Rochester, Michigan, Colorado, Purdue, Penn State, North Carolina State, UC San Diego, UC Riverside, New Mexico, Oregon, Maryland, etc. The remaining students went into industry, national labs, or positions at universities and high schools.
- In the past ten years, 92 out of 95 MS students performed significant (publication-worthy) research activity that culminated in a research thesis.
Does Miami offer competitive stipends to its MS students?
Yes! A 100% tuition waiver plus a stipend is provided to Masters' students.
- For 2023-2024, the offer of admission includes a teaching assistantship for the 9-month academic year of $18,833.
- An additional $1,500 stipend may be earned, depending on availability, by students performing physics research during summer. Some professors may further augment graduate summer stipends from research grants.
- Students opting for grading or teaching assistant duties during summer may earn an additional $700.
How do I get admitted into the MS physics program at Miami?
- Applicants need a minimum GPA of 2.7 and an undergraduate degree in physics or a related field.
- The General GRE and the Physics GRE are strongly recommended, but not required.
- All application materials must be sent to the Graduate School by Feb. 1 for fall admission, although late applications will be accepted until all positions are filled. The application fee cannot be waived.
- A brief research statement-of-intent indicating your preference for one or more of the department’s research areas is required with your application.
- Go to Miami University’s Graduate School and click on “Apply Now.”
Explore your options and contact me if you have any questions. Best wishes for a satisfying career in science!
Dr. Mahmud Khan
Assistant Professor and Graduate Director
|Recent M.S. Students||M.S. Thesis Title||Advisor||After Miami|
|Lok Raj Pant||The Radiative Lifetime Measurement on 61∑+g(v = 9, 10, 11, J = 31) Excited States of Molecular Sodium Using Time Resolved High Resolution Double Resonance Spectroscopy||Dr. Burçin Bayram||Ph.D., Texas A&M University|
|Zibo Wang||Quantum Optical Models of Photosynthetic Reaction Centers: A Quantum Heat Engine Perspective||Dr. Imran Mirza||Ph.D., Rensselaer Polytechnis Institute|
|Pawan Khatiwada||An Introduction to Tensor Networks and Matrix Product States with Applications in Waveguide Quantum Electrodynamics||Dr. Imran Mirza||Ph.D., Stevens Institute of Technology|
|Alexander Staron||Stochastic Resonances and Velocity Sorting in a Dissipative Optical Lattice||Dr. Samir Bali||University of Colorado at Boulder|
|Bibandhan Poudyal||Single-Photon Routing in Multi-Level Chiral Waveguide Quantum Electrodynamics Ladders||Dr. Imran Mirza||Ph.D., University of Rochester|
|Dinesh Wagle||High Resolution Pulsed Laser Spectroscopy to Measure Radiative Property of 61∑g+(35,23) State of Diatomic Sodium Molecule||Dr. Burçin Bayram||Ph.D., University of Delaware|
|Martin Heidelman||Cellular Metabolic Monitoring at High Hydrostatic Pressure Using Phasor Analysis of UV-Excited Autofluorescence||Dr. Paul Urayama||Ph.D., University of Notre Dame|
|Ken DeRose||Observation of Slow Light, Stored Light, and Dicke Narrowing in Warm Alkali Vapor||Dr. Samir Bali||Ph.D., Northwestern|
|Subhash Bhatt||Superconducting Properties of Selected Intermetallic Compounds||Dr. Mahmud Khan||Ph.D., University of Delaware|
|Sara Zanfardino||Sensitivity of Diffuse Correlation Spectroscopy to Flow Rates in Tissue-Stimulating Optical Phantoms||Dr. Karthik Vishwanath||M.D. Program, Ohio University|
|Anthony Young||Investigation of Laser Speckle Contrast Imaging’s Sensitivity to Flow||Dr. Karthik Vishwanath||M.D./Ph.D., Wright State University|
|Jijun (Judy) Chen||Experimental Method for Measurement of Time-Resolved Reflectance in Scattering Media||Dr. Karthik Vishwanath||Ph.D., Purdue University|
|Benjamin Blankartz||The Mond External Field Effect on Dwarf Spheroidal Galaxies||Dr. Steve Alexander||Employed at First Solar, Columbus, OH|
|Jeffrey Brock||An Experimental Study of Magnetic and Structural Phase Transitions and Assibilated Phenomena in Selected NI-MN Derivative Heusler Alloys||Dr. Mahmud Khan||Ph.D., University of California San Diego|
|Ethan Clements||Characterization of 1-D and 3-D Optical Lattices Using Pump-Probe Spectroscopy and Fluorescence Imaging||Dr. Samir Bali||Ph.D., University of Colorado at Boulder|
|Millicent Gikunda||An Improved Sample Loading Technique for Cellular Metabolic Response Monitoring Under Pressure||Dr. Paul Urayama||Ph.D., University of Arkansas|
|Matthew Walentosky||On the Nature of Radial Dispersion Profiles for Dwarf Spheroidal Galaxies in the Local Group According to MOND||Dr. Steve Alexander||Employed as a data scientist, B/Works|
|Phillip Arndt||Probing the Excited Rovibrational States of Sodium Dime||Dr. Burçin Bayram||Ph.D., Temple University|
|Ramakanata Chapai||An Experimental Study on the Structural and Magnetic Properties of Ni2+xMn1.4-xGa0.6 and Ni2-xMn1.4+xGa0.6 Heusler Type Alloys||Dr. Mahmud Khan||Ph.D., Louisiana State University|
|Matthew Gillette||Design and Implementation of a Fast Imaging System for Cold Atom Experiments||Dr. Samir Bali||Employed at ColdQuanta, Madison, WI|
|Jeffrey Maltas||The Spectral Phasor Approach as a Tool for Monitoring the Autofluorescence of Mitochondrial Metabolism and its Application to High Pressure Studies||Dr. Paul Urayama||Ph.D., University of Michigan|
The Miami physics department is a friendly, supportive, and unique environment that provided an excellent physics education that was a great foundation for graduate school.
I believe the graduate program at Miami really affords everyone the opportunity to get out of it what you put in to it. I was able to develop my problem solving skills and computer programming skills while doing really cool research in a subject I have great passion for! I am really grateful for the experience. Although my plans shifted during my time at Miami, I came out of the program with several awards, a few publications, a prestigious degree, and a fantastic job as a data scientist.
I have no doubt that my experiences in the Miami University physics department were integral to my physics career. The opportunities for research and teaching shaped my choice to work in academia and heavily influenced my current research program. However, most important to me was the sense of compassion and collegiality in the department: I saw firsthand what it means to be a professor who truly cares about students and their success, and I strive to meet those standards every time I set foot in my classroom.
I would not be where I am today without the Miami University Physics M.S. program. It gave me the skills, knowledge and connections needed to find my dream job directly out of the program. The professors and staff are incredibly kind and helpful, and will go above and beyond to help you succeed.
The Physics MS program at Miami achieves the delicate balance of teaching and research. You work closely with your faculty research mentor, learning invaluable skills for a continued career in academia or industry. I had an increased sense of ownership of my research as my advisor was always willing to listen to my ideas and challenge me to push my research and understanding further. On the pedagogical side, working closely with a faculty member allows you to see the ins and outs of the teaching experience. Through my experience assisting Dr. Jennifer Blue in the Physics by Inquiry class, I truly developed passion and understanding for an active-learning teaching model.
I really enjoyed the time I spent as a student in Miami University's graduate physics program. The coursework, teaching, and research opportunities all helped me build a solid foundation in math and science. The staff was great, and the professors were always there to help me out when I needed it.
Miami University has developed me in more ways than I could foresee. I was able to grow not only as a scientist through research, but as a future mentor through teaching. I feel as though I have become a more well-rounded graduate student, which will help me further pursue an academic career.
The Physics MS program at Miami did a fantastic job preparing me for a career as a scientist, both as a teacher and as a researcher. As an undergrad I never would have guessed I would have ended up in this area of research, but Miami provided me an excellent introduction to the world of nanoscience.
While at Miami, I was encouraged to pursue my physics interests, challenged with class work and research, and built lasting relationships with fellow grad students and faculty. As I continue my education, I look fondly at my time at Miami knowing I will be using ideas and resources from there for years to come.
Miami is like a second home for me. It was the first place I ever visited in US, and everyone was so nice and cool. I made lots of friends here, learned quite a bit of academic skills, and cherished many cheerful memories. I really appreciate the opportunities I’ve been given by Miami Physics.