Physics

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Physics Overview

The goal of Chatham's physics program is to provide students with the highest level of physics education while ensuring that they receive opportunities for personal development and supportive faculty connections that make the Chatham experience unique. Through an extraordinary collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), students can learn among the leading minds of physics and develop their understanding of the relationship between physics and other areas of science, mathematics, and technology.

Degrees Offered
  • BA
  • BS
Program School

My teaching philosophy is to engage and equip students with knowledge beyond the classroom. I seek to be a mentor and help set the students up for success. And not just for now, but for years to come.

— DR. JAMI DASHDORJ, assistant professor of physics

Faculty Insights with Chemistry Professor Robert Lettan

Dr. Lettan, assistant professor of chemistry, discusses his favorite courses to teach at Chatham, what he loves about teaching, and what inspires his instruction in the science fields.

Explore the Physics Degree:

  • Students have opportunities to conduct research with peers and faculty, to publish, and to present at conferences.
  • Each year, Chatham runs a Summer Undergraduate Research Program. In addition to giving students experience in laboratory research prior to their capstone seminar, Chatham uses other sources of funding, such as the Hulme Award and the Theo Colburn and Lorin Maazel Awards, to provide money for physics students to travel to professional conferences and to fund their summer travel and research.
  • Students can also leverage Pittsburgh’s tight-knit academic community through connections our faculty has around the region.

Principles of Physics I

Introduction to the concepts, laws, and structure of physics. This is the first course in a calculus-based sequence that focuses on classical mechanics. Topics include vector analysis, kinematics, Newton’s laws, work, conservation of energy and momentum, collisions, gravity, harmonic motion, and wave phenomena.

Principles of Physics II

Introduction to the concepts, laws, and structure of physics. The second course in a calculus-based physics sequence. Topics include thermodynamics, fluids, electricity, circuit analysis, magnetism, Maxwell’s equations, properties of light, and optics.

Carnegie Mellon University

Through our combined program with Carnegie Mellon University, students can take additional courses not offered at Chatham Univeristy.

View Full Curriculum

Our Faculty

If one word could best sum up Chatham's faculty, it would be engaged. Professors bring experiences to relate the course lessons to real-world situations.

Full Faculty

The Science Complex

The Science Complex is Chatham’s 10,000 square foot laboratory building, which features a three-story glass atrium and a modern greenhouse in addition to individual, specialized research spaces; laboratories and classrooms; a range of modern analytical equipment including cell and tissue culture facilities, fluorescence microscope, spectrometers (nuclear magnetic resonance, UV-VIS, IR), and one of the few drift tube mass spectrometers in the country.

Learn by Teaching

If you are interested in teaching, you can receive secondary education certification in Physics through Chatham University's MA in Teaching (MAT) program.

Funding Opportunities

You can apply for Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) positions, sponsored by the National Science Foundation or others. This program allows undergraduate students to participate in active research projects during the summer before their junior or senior year.