The department offers a program of coursework and research leading to the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in physics. Approximately 40 graduate students are enrolled in the Physics department, supported by research and teaching assistantships and fellowships.

Active research areas in the department include Astronomy and Astrophysics, Atomic, Molecular, & Optical Physics Experiment, Biophysics, Computational Physics, Condensed Matter Physics, High Energy Nuclear/Particle Experiment, High Energy Theory and Cosmology, Nonlinear Optics and Photonics Experiment, Plasma Physics Experiment, Soft Condensed Matter Physics and Complex Fluids, Statistical & Thermal Physics, and Physics Education.

See the Research Page for a more detailed list of research activities. Experimental, theoretical, and computational projects are underway in most areas. Active collaborations also exist with faculty in other departments and programs at Lehigh, such as Electrical Engineering, Bioengineering, and Materials Science and Engineering.

Candidates for advanced degrees normally will have completed, before beginning their graduate studies, the requirements for a bachelor’s degree with a major in physics, including advanced mathematics beyond differential and integral calculus. Students lacking the equivalent of this preparation will make up deficiencies in addition to taking the specified work for the degree sought. At least eight semester hours of general college physics using calculus are required for admission to all 200- and 300-level courses. Additional prerequisites for individual courses are noted in the course descriptions. Admission to 400-level courses generally is predicated on satisfactory completion of corresponding courses in the 200- and 300-level groups or their equivalent.

Program Requirements

Thirty credit hours required, including a research project. No minimum grade point average, but more than four grades below B cause a student to become ineligible for further graduate work. All work for M.S. must be done in residence at Lehigh. No foreign language requirement and no requirement for comprehensive/qualifying examination or thesis.

Nine credits of coursework beyond M.S. required, but Ph.D. programs usually include 20 or more credits beyond M.S. Minimum time requirement of two years with at least one year in residence. Qualifying examination, general examination, and thesis defense required. No departmental or university language requirements.
GRE Requirements: Required
Physics GRE Requirements: Recommended
TOEFL Requirements: Required

Description of your department culture

Lehigh graduate students enjoy a camaraderie that extends beyond the office and transcends their years at Lehigh. Dinners, softball games, open-door offices, weddings, and other get-togethers keep them in touch and cheerful as they face the work that graduate school presents.