Physics: Physics Teaching, BSLAS

for the degree of Bachelor of Science in Liberal Arts and Sciences: Major in Physics (Sciences and Letters), Physics Teaching Concentration

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department faculty: Physics Faculty

overview of college admissions & requirements: Liberal Arts & Sciences

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No longer accepting applications Fall 2022

This concentration fulfills state certification requirements to teach high school physics (grades 9-12) through the AP/honors level and general science (high school biology, chemistry, earth and space science, and environmental science up to but not including the AP/honors level). 

Time to degree completion varies. Minimum time to completion is 8 semesters, some students may require 10 semesters. Transfer students may need 10 total semesters combined to complete the program. Please see the LAS section in the transfer handbook for more information. 

for the degree of Bachelor of Science in Liberal Arts and Sciences, Major in Physics (Sciences and Letters), Physics Teaching Concentration

A Major Plan of Study Form must be completed and submitted to the LAS Student Affairs Office before the end of the fifth semester (60-75 hours). Please see your adviser.

Departmental distinction: Distinction is determined by a combination of grade point average and achievement in student teaching. The student's practice teaching experience will be evaluated by the departmental honors adviser and the teaching supervisor. Distinction requires a 3.2 grade point average; high distinction, 3.4; highest distinction, 3.6. Students desiring distinction should consult with the departmental honors adviser during the junior year.

General education: Students must complete the Campus General Education requirements including the campus general education language requirement.

Minimum required major and supporting course work: Minimum required major and supporting course work normally equates to 65-73 hours. Twelve hours of 300- and 400-level courses in the major must be taken on this campus.

Teacher Education requirements: Students in this concentration must complete the Teacher Education Minor in Secondary School Teaching.  See the College of Education section for requirements of the minor (39 hours). 
GPA requirements: To remain in good standing in this program and be recommended for certification, candidates are required to maintain UIUC, cumulative, content area, and professional education, grade-point averages of 2.5 (A= 4.0). Candidates should consult their advisor or the Council on Teacher Education for the list of courses used to compute these grade-point averages.

Minimum hours required for graduation: 120 hours.

Foundation Courses
The following courses must be completed or in progress when students apply to the Secondary Education minor.
MATH 221Calculus I 14
or MATH 220 Calculus
MATH 231Calculus II3
MATH 241Calculus III4
MATH 285Intro Differential Equations3
or MATH 286 Intro to Differential Eq Plus
PHYS 211University Physics: Mechanics4
PHYS 212University Physics: Elec & Mag4
PHYS 213Univ Physics: Thermal Physics2
PHYS 214Univ Physics: Quantum Physics2
Select one group of Chemistry courses:4-5
General Chemistry I
and General Chemistry Lab I
Accelerated Chemistry I
and Accelerated Chemistry Lab I
Additional required coursework
Teacher Education Minor in Secondary School Teaching39
Physics Core
PHYS 110Physics Careers0
PHYS 325Classical Mechanics I3
PHYS 435Electromagnetic Fields I3
PHYS 485Atomic Phys & Quantum Theory3
or PHYS 486 Quantum Physics I
Choose at least three courses from List A and List B below. At least one course must come from List B.9-14
Classical Mechanics II
Electromagnetic Fields II
Thermal & Statistical Physics
Subatomic Physics
Quantum Physics II
Condensed Matter Physics
Introduction to Biophysics
Classical Physics Lab
Modern Experimental Physics
Electronic Circuits
Acoustical Physics of Music
Additional Technical Courses
IB 100Biology in Today's World3
GEOL 107Physical Geology4
ASTR 210Introduction to Astrophysics3

MATH 220 may be substituted with four of the five credit hours applying toward the degree. MATH 220 is appropriate for students with no background in calculus.

Requirements for the Teacher Education in Secondary School Teaching Minor

Professional Education Required Courses
EDUC 201Identity and Difference in Education 13
EDUC 202Social Justice, School and Society 13
CI 401Introductory Teaching in a Diverse Society3
CI 403Teaching a Diverse High School Student Population3
CI 404Teaching and Assessing Secondary School Students3
CI 473Disciplinary Literacy3
EPSY 201Educational Psychology 1, 23
EPSY 485Assessing Student Performance3
SPED 405General Educator's Role in Special Education3
EDPR 442Educational Practice in Secondary Education12
Total Hours39-40

EDUC 201, EDUC 202 and EPSY 201 can be completed at any time during the degree and are not pre-requisites to apply for the minor. 


PSYC 100 is a pre-requisite for EPSY 201.