B.S. in Applied Physics
Applied physics is a field for problem-solvers and innovators: people drawn to study the features and forces of the physical world and to then apply that knowledge as they research and develop technology. In Biola’s applied physics program, you’ll receive the broad scientific education needed to thrive in this growing field. By combining elements of a pure physics degree with elements of an engineering degree, the applied physics major offers a blend of big-picture theoretical concepts and specific practical applications — making it an ideal program to prepare you for graduate school and careers in a wide range of industries, including aerospace, defense, biotechnology, business and more.
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Why Choose Applied Physics at Biola?
In addition to its strong curriculum, expert faculty members and biblical integration, Biola’s applied physics program offers several key advantages:
- The applied physics program gives you a solid foundation in physics, the flexibility to pursue specific areas of interest and opportunities to gain practical, marketable skills.
- Biola’s Southern California setting — a global hub for innovation and business — offers access to a wealth of jobs and internships in government and industry.
- The Lim Center, Biola’s “dream home” for scientific research and instruction, is equipped with research laboratories, cutting-edge technology and opportunities to get meaningful experience.
- Small class sizes give you an opportunity to develop close relationships with your professors, who have extensive experience in teaching, research and industry.
- Biola’s commitment to Christ-centered STEM excellence prepares you to appreciate God’s design within creation, to approach your career as a calling, and to conduct your work with a strong commitment to ethics and truth.
What Will I Study?
Applied physics is a broad scientific discipline that incorporates coursework in mechanics, electricity, circuits, wave theory, chemistry, calculus, engineering and more. The first two years of coursework are almost identical to the physics major and the engineering physics major, giving you the option of exploring your interests before deciding which major is the best fit. For students seeking to choose among these three majors, here is a simplified way of thinking about them:
- The physics major is geared toward students who are interested in studying abstract theories, love math and think about the “big picture.” They gravitate towards wanting to acquire a deep understanding of how the universe works.
- The applied physics major is geared toward students who are natural problem-solvers and enjoy engineering but are looking for a broad experience. It’s more practical and hands-on than physics, but less specialized than engineering physics.
- The engineering physics major is geared toward students looking to specialize in a specific field of engineering to implement practical technological innovations. This major includes three years of study at Biola, followed by two years at the University of Southern California or another accredited engineering school. Students completing this program will receive two bachelor’s degrees — one from Biola and one from the engineering school.
Applied physics is a versatile STEM degree that prepares you for a range of graduate programs and careers. Students in this area often choose to pursue master’s and doctoral degrees in applied physics or engineering. Applied physics graduates with a bachelor’s degree are well-suited for a wide range of career opportunities that involve problem solving, analytical thinking, research and development, including:
- Industries such as aerospace, defense, biotechnology, business and more
- Companies such as Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, Google, Boeing, Tesla, SpaceX, Northrop Grumman, U.S. Air Force, NASA, business startups