Mission Statement

Physics: The Fundamentals of Matter, Energy, Space, Time, and Interactions

Physics is an experimental science in which its practitioners investigate nature at the most fundamental level on scales ranging from subatomic distances to the size of the universe. It is a quest to understand the origin and behavior of all forces: forces that account for the observed stability and in some cases instability of the atomic nucleus; forces that account for the stability of the atom; forces that account for the stability of matter and the large scale structure of the universe. In this sense, it is the most fundamental of the physical sciences, and the successful physics student will be adept at solving problems using techniques that probe the fundamental building blocks of nature.

Accordingly, a graduate from the Villanova University Physics Department will be able to solve problems involving the general motion of macroscopic and microscopic bodies; the interactions of charged particles with each other, with the fields that they create, and among those created fields; the behavior of particles at the smallest distances and energies; and the collective behavior of large numbers of small particles, as either a solid object or a gaseous system.

Furthermore, as an experimental science, the Physics Graduate will be proficient in laboratory techniques; data analysis; and (specifically related to Physics graduates) cognizant of the subtle difficulties associated with the interactions among the observer, the measurement process, and the physical process being observed.

Being trained to analyze phenomena at the most fundamental level makes the physics major versatile.Therefore the student who successfully completes the degree in physics will not only be well prepared for graduate studies in physics, but for employment in research oriented industries or study in professional fields.

The Mission of the Physics Department

The Department of Physics promotes understanding of the fundamental elements of nature for students and researchers within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and across Villanova University.