About

In the past 80 years, our department has guided over 600 Ph.D. candidates to success.

he University of Pittsburgh’s Department of Physics and Astronomy is recognized nationally and internationally for faculty at the frontier of research who mentor graduate students on an individual level. With 41 core faculty members and lecturers, the department has a strong tradition in excellence and innovation. Our alumni have gone on to build distinguished careers as researchers at major academic and industrial laboratories, educators at universities and colleges, and as independent scientific entrepreneurs.

Pittsburgh, nicknamed the City of Bridges, with a network of bike trails, is a hilly urban center located in western Pennsylvania and was ranked the Most Livable City in the U.S. in 2013 by Forbes.com.

Surrounded by nine state parks, the woodland city offers a variety of outdoor activities including cycling, hiking, downhill and cross-country skiing, white-water rafting and kayaking, rock climbing, hunting, and fishing. It is a culturally vibrant city, easily accessible, with many museums, an internationally renowned symphony orchestra, opera and many theaters. It possesses multiple major league sports teams, along with our own exciting University of Pittsburgh football and basketball teams as well as numerous athletic programs. The region boasts several smaller cultural centers with their own intrinsic character, including Oakland where the University is located.

The University is located about 3 miles east of downtown Pittsburgh. Adjacent to the campus are Carnegie Mellon University and the Carnegie Museum, comprising the Museum of Art, the Museum of Natural History, the Carnegie Library, and the Carnegie Music Hall. Schenley Park adjoins the campus; it has picnic areas, playing fields, jogging trails, and an excellent botanical conservatory.

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Program Requirements

Bachelor's degree requirements:
Bachelor's degree in one of the physical sciences, mathematics, astronomy/astrophysics or engineering with relevant physics courses is required. Research experience is recommended but not required.
GRE Requirements: Not Required
Physics GRE Requirements: Not Required
TOEFL Requirements: Required

Description of your department culture

The faculty, students, and staff within the Department are friendly and welcoming while maintaining a professional environment. The department hosts a weekly coffee hour for all and our Association of Physics and Astronomy Graduate Students holds events throughout the year. Our students have a Women in Science group as well as participation in Women in Science and Engineering. The University of Pittsburgh offers an outstanding environment for pursuing physics and astronomy.
Pittsburgh boasts moderate housing prices, historic neighborhoods convenient to campus, beautiful and extensive public parks, famed sports teams, and a vibrant cultural life. Students are eligible to purchase discounted tickets for music and theater events around the city. The university is located in the bustling Oakland neighborhood, home to three universities, three major hospitals, the Carnegie Museums and Library complex, Phipps Conservatory, and numerous historic buildings, all at the doorstep of Schenley Park. Public transit and many museums are free with a Pitt ID. See http://www.coolpgh.pitt.edu for details about what Pittsburgh has to offer.