Putting Scientific Theory into Practice

Thanks to engaging courses that utilize hands-on, active learning and highly engaged and accessible faculty, our graduates successfully apply to top graduate schools and to engineering- and chemistry-based industries across the country. Over half of our graduates in recent years have received their doctorates or are currently working towards earning their doctorates.

With courses in physics, astronomy, scientific inquiry, and integrated science education, we are ready to provide you with a rigorous degree while providing you with the support you need to succeed. The faculty maintain awareness and interest in recent, best practices in physics education. The program also has state-of-the-art Zick and DeGraaf Active Learning Classrooms for our introductory classes, allowing for an interactive atmosphere throughout all phases of the coursework. 

In addition to the BA, BS, and Honors programs in Physics, we also offer the Integrated Science Teachers Certificate Program. You’ll leave prepared to make an impact in secondary education, preparing the next generation to be successful with a solid foundation in STEM knowledge.

Professor and two students working on a computer.
Professor working with two students in a physics class.

Zick & DeGraaf Active Learning Classrooms

The program also has state-of-the-art Zick and DeGraaf Active Learning Classrooms for our introductory classes, allowing for an interactive atmosphere throughout all phases of the physics coursework.

Zick Active Learning Classroom
Made possible by a generous 2010 pledge from the University of Michigan-Flint alum David G. Zick and his wife, Francine, the renovated classroom was completed in 2011 and officially dedicated in October of 2012. As a departure from isolating sit-and-listen lecture halls, the classroom is designed for face-to-face interaction between students and increased instructor-student interaction. Students sit at tables in groups of 5, with networked computer monitors positioned at the end of each table. The smaller environment reduces the distance between the learner and the “up-front” screen, enabling students to work collectively on the day’s problems projected through the monitor.

Computer monitors in the Zick Classroom sit atop mobile red tool chests. The familiar mechanic-style hubs house various tools of the science trades, signaling the capacity for hands-on experiments in addition to conversation and computer work. A glance around the room at the remaining shelves and tables reveals the space to be a hybrid of sorts, consolidating lecture, discussion, and laboratory into one educational experience.

DeGraaf Active Learning Classroom
The classroom, made possible by a generous gift from David and Francine Zick, will be named in honor of Dr. Donald DeGraaf, a founding member of the UM-Flint Physics department who taught here from the year the university opened in 1956 until 1990. Like the Zick classroom, the DeGraaf Active Learning Classroom will be a departure from the typical lecture-style classrooms prevalent on college campuses. The design of the classroom is intended to promote dialogue between students and increase teacher-student interaction, using small groups and activities developed to enhance hands-on learning by consolidating lecture, discussion, and lab work into one educational experience.

For his part, Dr. DeGraaf was touched by the honor. “For a student, simply listening is not learning; for a teacher, simply speaking is not teaching,” said DeGraaf. “Students, especially scientists, must learn with their hands, and this classroom will allow them to do just that and reach their full potential.”

Physics Bachelor’s Degree Programs

Bachelor of Arts in Physics

Catalog Description
The bachelor of arts in Physics is an excellent academic option, providing students with a solid foundation for pursuing a number of career fields.

Learn more about the Honors track offered.

Bachelor of Science in Physics

Catalog Description
Students wishing to pursue graduate school often choose the bachelor of science degree track with its emphasis on additional math requirements. Learn more about this challenging and rewarding academic program.


Secondary Teaching Certificates

Major Maps Icon

What will your experience as a physics major look like with UM-Flint? We’ve developed major maps to help you learn what to expect during each stage of your studies. These maps share year-by-year information like class selection, extra-curricular opportunities, career preparation, and more. Download the map and start charting your course to success.

Ayana Ghosh

Ayana Ghosh
Physics/Abstract Mathematics 2015

Ghosh earned her PhD from the University of Connecticut’s Materials Science and Engineering program. She has held graduate research positions at institutions such as Los Alamos National Laboratory and is currently a post-doctoral researcher at Oakridge National Laboratory.

“The UM-Flint campus has really given me a lot. I found so many opportunities that I’m not sure I would have gotten at a larger school,” Ghosh says. “I really enjoyed my time and the personal connections I was able to make.” Read more.

Advising Services

At the University of Michigan-Flint, we are proud to have many dedicated advisors who are the experts students can rely upon to guide their educational journey. Explore all the possible pathways for your future, and book an appointment today.

In addition to academic advising, the College of Arts & Sciences provides extensive career advising services to help you define a clear path for your career. Contact Myesha Cannon through Handshake to schedule your career coaching appointment.

UM-FLINT NOW | News & Happenings

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