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Science and Engineering (SC) – Physics and Astronomy

Location: 128 Petrie, Tel.: 416-736-5249
Chair: M.L. McCall
Distinguished Research Professors: N. Bartel, E.A. Hessels
Professors: S. Bhadra, M.M. De Robertis, M. Horbatsch, R. Hornsey, R.G. Koniuk, A. Kumarakrishnan, R. Lewis, M.L. McCall, S.R. Menary, W.A. van Wijngaarden
Professors Emeriti: J.W. Darewych, A.D. Stauffer
Associate Professors: P.B. Hall, B.M. Quine, C.H. Storry, W.J. Taylor
Associate Professor Emeritus: S. Jeffers
Assistant Professors: T. Kirchner, V. Sanz-Gonsalez
Senior Lecturers: P.A. Delaney, S. Jerzak

Physics and astronomy are quantitative sciences which employ the scientific method of observation, experiment and systemization of the results of experiment. Their objectives are to seek to understand the ways in which the most fundamental or elementary systems in nature really operate.

Courses in the Department of Physics and Astronomy cover basic elements of the major topics delineated during the last 200 years in these rapidly developing fields of knowledge. There are certain required courses (see the program of study requirements in the Faculty of Science and Engineering Programs of Study section) which expose each student to the broad spectrum of physical phenomena and in an elementary way to the techniques of the theoretical physicist or astronomer in numerical analysis and modelling and of the experimental physicist or observational astronomer in measurement, observation and the apparatus of experiment. In developing programs of 3000- and 4000-level courses, students may concentrate their interests around experimental physics, theoretical physics, or astronomy and astrophysics. There are opportunities to develop Honours Double Major and Honours Major/Minor programs with other disciplines in the Faculty of Science and Engineering or in other Faculties.

The department offers Specialized Honours applied science streams in applied physics and in space science, developed to meet the needs of rapidly expanding technologies in these fields. The requirements for these streams are found in the Faculty of Science and Engineering Programs of Study section.

A brochure giving detailed course descriptions and typical program prescriptions for all programs involving physics and astronomy is available on request from the department office.

Courses in Physics and Astronomy

Admission to any course beyond the 1000 level requires consultation with a member of the departmental admissions committee. Normally, entry to courses at the 3000 and 4000 levels requires successful completion of all lower-level courses that are required for degree programs in Physics and Astronomy. The prerequisites and corequisites stated for certain courses indicate the standard of background preparation deemed necessary for those not taking bachelor or Honours Physics and Astronomy programs. The course director should be consulted by potential entrants who have not completed the normal entry requirements of the department.

Unless otherwise specified, courses whose numbers end in “6.00” (i.e. six-credit courses) have three lecture hours per week for two terms when taught in a fall/winter session; those whose numbers end in “3.00” (i.e. three-credit courses) have three lecture hours per week for one term. Courses offered in the evening and/or in a summer session may have different formats and scheduling, though they will be equivalent in credit value.