About Our Department

Be Part of the Physics Revolution

Physics is at the forefront of many technological advancements and our department is leading the way in a diverse range of fields including astrophysics, biophysics, theoretical nuclear and particle physics, quantum information, materials, sensing, and extraterrestrial materials.

The Department of Physics plays a leading role in the recently founded Center for Quantum Leaps - an Arts & Sciences initiative in collaboration with the School of Medicine and the School of Engineering with immense potential to revolutionize quantum computing and the development of new materials and medical treatments to solve major scientific and societal challenges.

The Department of Physics is also affiliated with two other research centers. It plays a key role in the McDonnell Center for the Space Sciences, with leadership in studies of cosmic rays, high-energy astrophysics, cosmology, and astromaterials analysis, including the design of experiments to search for dark matter. The Institute of Materials Science & Engineering is a hub for Washington University materials research, focused on the development and application of new materials with desirable properties and microstructures. Additionally, our biophysicists are leading a transdisciplinary campus-wide initiative in Artificial Intelligence and Neuroscience focused on the convergence of machine learning, artificial intelligence, and brain sciences.
Our physics alumni are influential leaders in academia and industry, utilizing their expertise to advance innovation across various fields. The problem solving attitude and analytic skills you will develop pursuing a degree in physics are highly exportable and will make you versatile and adaptable for careers in physics and beyond. A physics education also serves as excellent preparation for several schools, including medical school. Physicists are highly interactive and versatile professionals who supply essential expertise in research and development efforts in both academia and industry.

Our Community

Whether you plan to pursue an undergraduate major or minor in physics or astrophysics, follow our biophysics track, or plan to join our upcoming computational major (including quantum computing), we provide outstanding teaching combined with hands-on research opportunities to help you excel, and opportunities to attend conferences and present your work. Contact physics@wustl.edu to learn more about our undergraduate program or apply today.

Our PhD program offers generous support for the first two years and a welcoming community to help you achieve your research aspirations. Learn more about our graduate program or contact gradinfo@physics.wustl.edu.
At Washington University, we strive to foster a supportive, inclusive and equitable learning environment where everybody can thrive and succeed. We offer plenty of opportunities for research experiences and a welcoming community of students, faculty and staff. Join us and be part of the physics revolution that is shaping our world today!

Astronomers share climate-friendly meeting solutions

Astronomers share climate-friendly meeting solutions

Olivia Lazorik

Involvement in the physics department has been central to my experience at WashU. From collaborating on challenging problem sets with my peers to conducting interdisciplinary research, the opportunities presented by the department have facilitated my growth both as a student and a leader.

―Olivia LazorikClass of 2024

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