FAQ'S About Physics at Duquesne University
Would I be well prepared to move on to a PhD in physics?
Absolutely. The Duquesne physics curriculum is designed to match the depth and breadth of physics bachelor degrees in all major physics programs in the country. The teaching is as rigorous as can be had and is supported by a strong synergy with our research programs. This ensures that students will be prepared for graduate coursework when they leave.
Would I be able to participate in research in astrophysics?
While we do not have data-driven astrophysics projects in site, we fully prepare you for and assist you in the pursuit of external research experiences in data-driven astrophysics. This includes opportunities in observatories and in other universities with large astronomy programs which specifically recruit from small departments like ours.
Would I be able to do interdisciplinary research?
Physics faculty collaborate with faculty in the department of chemistry and biochemistry, and with faculty in the environmental science program through projects that utilize cross-over expertise. These projects are open to undergraduate recruits.
Would I be able to learn about general relativity?
Yes, both in coursework and also through direct mentoring with one of our two faculty members with general relativity expertise. Our Gravitational Astrophysics class is a great primer for candidates considering pursuing black-hole physics as a career.
Do many 3-2 students fail to transfer to engineering school?
Not at all! It is very rare for a 3-2 candidate to fail to transfer. Close advisement is in place constantly to ensure that all candidates meet the required expectations by the time of transfer.
How small are the "small classes"?
A typical sophomore class has between 10 and 16 students. Upper level elective courses may have 5 to 16 students.
How many girls are typically in the program?
It varies with the year, but an average over several years is about 35%.
Are there merit scholarships available?
The Bayer School Scholars Program is based on merit and is available to students from populations that are underrepresented in physics (minorities of any gender, and women of any cultural or racial identity). All other scholarships are based on need as determined by our financial aid office.
Can I transfer my AP credits?
Yes! But do not transfer credits for physics courses. Transfer only for all other courses such as math, chemistry and general education.
Could I double major outside of the sciences?
While math is the easiest second major to add to a physics degree, it is possible to get a second major in non-science disciplines if the candidate is able to transfer a significant amount of AP credits. In our most recent experience, a student received a degree in physics with a second major in Spanish. Minoring in a non-science discipline is very accessible.