Physics Education

This is an archived copy of the 2018-19 catalog. To access the most recent version of the catalog, please visit

Major Requirements

Major: Physics Education

Degree Type: B.A. or B.S.
Required Degree Credits to Graduate: 148

University Degree Requirements

  1. Satisfactory completion of all requirements of the curriculum in which one is enrolled.
  2. Earn a minimum total of 120 credits in approved coursework.  Some academic programs exceed this minimum.
  3. Satisfactory completion of the general education requirements as specific by the university.
  4. A minimum institutional GPA of 2.00 based on work taken at NDSU.
  5. At least 36 credits presented for graduation must be in courses number 300 or higher.
  6. Transfer Students: Must earn a minimum of 60 credits from a baccalaureate-degree granting or professional institituion. 
    1. Of these 60, at least 36 must be NDSU residence credits as defined in #7.
    2. Within the 36 resident credits, a minimum of 15 must be in courses numbered 300 or higher and 15 credits in the major field of study.
  7. At least 36 credits must be NDSU resident credits.  Residence credits include credits registered and paid for at NDSU.

For complete information, please refer to the Degree and Graduation Requirements section of this Bulletin.

University General Education Requirements

Communication (C)12
College Composition I
College Composition II
Fundamentals of Public Speaking
Upper Division Writing
Quantitative Reasoning (R) 3
Science and Technology (S) 10
Humanities and Fine Arts (A) 6
Social and Behavioral Sciences (B) 6
Wellness (W) 2
Cultural Diversity (D) *†
Global Perspectives (G) *†
Total Credits39
  •  A list of university approved general education courses and administrative policies are available here.

Major Requirements

Physics Education Requirements
BIOL 124
Environmental Science
and Environmental Science Laboratory (May satisfy general education category S)
ENGL 324Writing in the Sciences (May satisfy general education category C)3
STAT 330Introductory Statistics (May satisfy general education category R)3
Teaching Specialty Requirements
Select One Course Pair:4
Principles of Chemistry I
and Principles of Chemistry Laboratory I
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry I Laboratory
Select One Course Pair:4
Principles of Chemistry II
and Principles of Chemistry Laboratory II
General Chemistry II
and General Chemistry II Laboratory
CHEM Elective300/400-Level Elective Course & Lab4
CSCI 114Microcomputer Packages3-4
or CSCI 116 Business Use of Computers
or CSCI 160 Computer Science I
GEOL 105
Physical Geology
and Physical Geology Lab (May satisfy general education category G)
GEOL 106
The Earth Through Time
and The Earth Through Time Lab
MATH 129Basic Linear Algebra *3
MATH 165Calculus I4
MATH 166Calculus II4
MATH 265Calculus III4
MATH 266Introduction to Differential Equations3
PHYS 110Introductory Astronomy3
PHYS 171Introductory Projects in Physics1
PHYS 215Research For Undergraduates1
PHYS 251
University Physics I
and University Physics I Laboratory
PHYS 251RUniversity Physics I Recitation1
PHYS 252
University Physics II
and University Physics II Laboratory
PHYS 252RUniversity Physics II Recitation1
PHYS Elective300/400-Level Elective Course3
PHYS 350Modern Physics3
PHYS 355Classical Mechanics3-4
or PHYS 330: Intermediate Mechanics (MSUM)
PHYS 360Modern Physics II3
PHYS 361Electromagnetic Theory3-4
or PHYS 370: Electromagnetic Theory (MSUM)
PHYS 411
Optics for Scientists & Engineers
and Optics for Scientists and Engineers Lab
PHYS 462Thermal and Statistical Physics3
PHYS 485Quantum Mechanics I3
PHYS 491Seminar1
Professional Education Requirements
EDUC 321Introduction to Teaching3
EDUC 322Educational Psychology3
EDUC 451Instructional Planning, Methods and Assessment3
EDUC 481Classroom Practice Methods of Teaching I: (Science)3
EDUC 485Student Teaching Seminar1
EDUC 486Classroom Management for Diverse Learners3
EDUC 487Student Teaching9
EDUC 488Applied Student Teaching3
EDUC 489Teaching Students of Diverse Backgrounds3
Total Credits125-128

Degree Requirements and Notes

  • A GPA of 2.75 or better in the teaching specialty is required for placement in student teaching and exit from the program. 
  • A GPA of 2.75 or better in the professional education requirements as well as passing the appropriate Praxis II exam are required to exit the program.  A grade of ‘C’ or better is required in all Professional Education Requirement courses.
  • Courses taken Pass/Fail will not be used to satisfy any requirements other than total credits.
  • See School of Education for admission requirements.

Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree – An additional 6 credits of Humanities and Social Sciences and proficiency at the second year in a modern foreign language are required.