Linda S. Dake, Ph.D.
266 Gordon Science Center

(315) 792-3805
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Bachelor of Science / Bachelor of Arts Degree • School of
Arts and Sciences

Physics Major

Program Details

Utica College offers B.A. and B.S. degrees in physics, and both 2 – 2, and 3 – 2 transfer options in engineering. All programs share a common body of courses for the first two years.

  • Physics is the science concerned with the nature of matter, energy, and the interrelationships between them. Common cross-disciplines include engineering physics, chemical physics, geophysics, biophysics, and mathematical physics.
  • Engineering is the application of physics to real-world problems. Engineers are the people who design the automobiles, the bridges, the computer chips, the electronic devices, the artificial limbs, and all of the other technological wonders of our civilization.

Modern Physics Lab and the Franck-Hertz Experiment

Between these two fields, there is a mixed area that might be called applied physics or research engineering. It calls for people with a practical physics background who do engineering-development and research in industry.

Students considering public school teaching as a career should refer to the programs in education - click here for details.


  • The B.A. in physics is intended for students who plan to teach or who wish to have a good scientific background for use in technology-related careers in business, law, management, optometry, or medicine. It provides a broader base of general science and allows for more course electives in other disciplines than the B.S. program.


    See catalog listing
  • The B.S. in physics is designed for students who wish to practice applied physics or research engineering in government or industry, pursue a graduate degree in physics, engineering, or education; or who simply want a more intensive background in physics for careers in technical management, high school physics teaching, and other technical fields.


    See catalog listing


The 2 – 2 transfer option in engineering
provides the basic courses typically found in the first two years of engineering programs. Students have the advantages of small classes and close contact with the faculty as they master their foundation courses in science, mathematics, and introductory engineering at Utica College. After two years, students transfer to an engineering school to complete their work at the junior-senior level, and they will receive their degree from that institution. Utica College students have successfully transferred into engineering programs at Syracuse, Clarkson, RIT, and Union among others.

The 3 – 2 transfer option in engineering is similar to the 2 – 2 program but includes another year of study at Utica College in which students take more physics, math, and core courses for a total of at least 96 hours. With this additional course work, students will transfer to an engineering school where they will take junior level engineering courses. Upon the completion of 32 hours at the transfer college (and receipt of an official transcript), students will earn a B.A. in physics from Utica College. When the students have satisfied the requirements from the engineering school, typically after another year of study there, they will earn a second degree, in engineering. In effect, one year of college work counts for the degree at two institutions, and students will have a liberal arts degree in addition to the engineering degree. This degree should be considered by those seeking a career in technical management.