Rice University Applied - Physics Graduate Program

6100 Main St 301C Space Science, MS-100, Houston, Texas 77005, United States of America


The Rice Applied Physics Graduate Program offers one of the few doctoral degrees in applied physics in the world.

A joint effort of the School of Natural Sciences and the School of Engineering at Rice, this program provides a truly multidisciplinary graduate education. We produce well-trained physicists who can apply their knowledge and skills in basic physics to important cutting-edge problems in diverse disciplines of modern science and engineering.”

- Select 5 electives from 135+ class options
- Students work across 9 Rice departments, and 4 Texas Medical Center Institutions
- Faculty to Student Ratio 5:1
- 11 different class options to satisfy the 4 core class component
- Applied Physics Program Ranked #3 of 46 In the Nation By Academics Analytics

Program Requirements

Bachelor's degree requirements:
Average admitted students obtain a 3.63 GPA (on a 4 point scale).
Minimum undergraduate GPA: 3.0
GRE Requirements: Not Required
Physics GRE Requirements: Not Required
TOEFL Requirements: Required

Description of your department culture

Rice University’s Applied Physics Graduate Program (APP) provides students with a solid background in the fundamentals of the physical sciences, allowing them to address and solve cutting-edge applied research problems in areas as different as advanced materials, quantum magnetism, plasmonics and photonics, biophysics and bioengineering, ultracold atom physics, condensed matter and chemical physics, and all aspects of nanoscience and nanotechnology.

The APP leads to the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. The program does NOT offer a stand-alone Master of Science degree. Through rigorous research work, and by providing an extensive number of opportunities to improve communication and leadership skills, the program prepares scientists ready to start a professional career as leaders in academia or in the industry.

Rice’s APP is a joint effort of the natural sciences and the engineering schools at Rice, where the application of physics principles is beneficial. The objective is to provide an interdisciplinary graduate education in the basic science that underlies important technology. APP-affiliated faculty members are from the departments of electrical and computer engineering, physics and astronomy, bioengineering, chemistry, materials science and nanoengineering, and chemical and biomolecular engineering. The faculty believes that the experience obtained by performing research at the intellectually stimulating interface of physical science and engineering is particularly effective in producing graduates who succeed in careers based on new and emerging technologies.

Current areas of research strength include Photonics and Plasmonics; Nanomaterials and Quantum Materials; Biophysics and Bioengineering; Neuroengineering; and Quantum Algorithms, Simulation, and Computation. Modern research is fundamentally transdisciplinary; it cuts across science and technology, and it does not care for boundaries between traditional topics. In research, particularly competitive context, a physicst's training adds a particularly effective point of view to a wide variety of scientific endeavors.