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Master of Science in Applied Physics

Many of today’s most interesting jobs need advanced physics skills. But many undergraduate engineering programs require only a year of physics.

The Master of Science in Applied Physics from Illinois Tech in Chicago strengthens engineers’ knowledge of physical systems in order to make them more competitive in today’s laser, optics, nanotechnology, semiconductor, and other fields. It’s the kind of physics needed wherever fields are advancing—from gate technology used in the advancement of flash drives and solid state drives, to laser technology for the next Playstation, to nanofabrication.

The program also is an option for high school or college physics teachers who want to earn their master's degree in applied physics.

You will build your knowledge of quantum physics, optics, laser physics, physics of fluids, applied electrodynamics, and other areas. Coursework also helps build problem-solving, quantitative, and analytic skills, which are good for many jobs. You may take many courses online, including the quantum physics courses. A doctoral degree is possible after receiving this degree.


  • 32 credit hours
  • Comprehensive examination

Note: Students in the Illinois Tech-Paris double-degree program can complete the program in one calendar year by taking classes in the fall, spring, and summer semesters. 

Program Requirements 

Required Courses

PHYS 405 Fundamentals of Quantum Theory I
PHYS 406 Fundamentals of Quantum Theory II
PHYS 501 Methods of Theoretical Physics I
PHYS 505 Electromagnetic Theory
PHYS 508 Analytical Dynamics
PHYS 515 Statistical Mechanics
PHYS 585 Physics Colloquium (taken twice)
PHYS 685 Physics Colloquium (taken twice)
PHYS 597 Reading and Special Problems

Engineering or Physics Electives

(12 credit hours)
Four courses selected in consultation with the academic advisor may be used for elective credits. At least two of these courses must be from an engineering discipline.