Physics, B.A.

Program Overview

Are you fascinated by the science behind how the world works? Are you excited about applying your knowledge to solve real problems in the physical world? If so, you should consider a major in physics. PLNU physics majors develop an understanding of the fundamental principles of physics while learning to apply physical principles, mathematical reasoning, and computational techniques to solve real-world problems.

As a physics major, you will design and conduct experiments, analyze and interpret data, and learn how to communicate complicated technical information, all within a collaborative environment rooted in ethical scientific practice.

PLNU offers both B.S. and B.A. degrees in physics. If you are interested in more flexibility, the B.A. in Physics provides more space in your schedule for a dual major, which opens the door to careers in industries such as teaching, computer science, and medicine.

Physics is an organized way of conversing with nature. Physicists ask questions, and nature responds. For many questions, the answers are predictable, but for really interesting questions, the answers can be unexpected and lead to new insights into the way that the world works. These are the moments physicists live for. The fundamental ideas of physics underlie all basic science, including astronomy, biology, chemistry, and geology. The animated conversation between physicists and nature is constant and it shows no sign of ending.

PLNU professor Michelle Chen tosses up a colorful ball while posing for a headshot


Michelle Chen, Ph.D.

To explain her field of study, Dr. Michelle Chen, PLNU associate professor of physics, refers to a ball on her desk. It is hand-sized and made up of hexagons, like a soccer ball you can see all the way through.

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Course List


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Are you ready to take the next step to begin your PLNU journey? Whether you’re a high school senior, college transfer student, or international student, find out what we’re looking for in our applicants and how you can apply.

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Student Support

For most students, the transition into college life is one full of adjustments. There is the excitement of newfound freedoms, but also some uncertainty as you begin to make choices and take responsibility for your own future. 

At PLNU, we’re committed to supporting you — academically, professionally, spiritually, personally — so that you may be successful both in your time as a student and beyond. That’s why we offer a holistic support system that focuses on your unique experiences, particular needs, and personal and professional goals — resulting from our deep concern for you, our student.

With a focus on authentic relationships and personalized attention, our goal is to help transform you so you can follow your calling in your own career and life.

Student Support

Career Opportunities

An education in physics will equip you to work in many different and interesting places — in industrial and government labs, on college campuses, and even in the astronaut corps. In addition, many physics grads leave the lab behind and work at newspapers and magazines, in government, and even on Wall Street — places where their problem-solving abilities and analytical skills are great assets. PLNU physics alumni have found success in the workforce through engineering at ViaSat and SPAWAR, just to name a few.

A bachelor's degree in physics can lead to careers in:

  • Astrophysics
  • Biophysics
  • Laser Technology
  • Material Science
  • Medical Physics
  • Nuclear Power
  • Renewable Energy

Connecting the Dots … from Here to Mars

Space pioneer and PLNU alumna, Trisha Jansma, explores the face of Mars — thanks largely to a PLNU chapel talk years ago.

Read More in the Viewpoint Online Magazine 

Department Faculty