2024-2025 Academic Year

Undergraduate Academic Calendar information header


Chérif F. Matta, BSc (Alexandria), PhD (McMaster), HDR (Lorraine) – FRSC(UK), FInstP, FAAS, FAAAS, Professor

Physics is one of the oldest, most fundamental, and most exciting sciences. It explores how our universe works, from its smallest atom to its largest structure made up of billions of galaxies. Why is the sky is blue? What is the speed of light? Is the universe expanding? How do living cells process and store energy as an electric field in cellular mitochondria? Why are lasers so intense and powerful – and what makes them different from regular intense light?  These and a myriad of other questions are answered by electromagnetic theory, Einstein’s Theories of Relativity (Special and General), theory of waves, quantum mechanics, astrophysics, biophysics. Physics and its applications are the basis of our modern society and technology from the computer, to the cell phone, to laser surgery, to GPS navigation systems, to the production of energy (environmentally clean notwithstanding). Physics drives much of the most exciting new discoveries. For example, as recent as 2018, Canadian Laser Physicist Donna Strickland received a Nobel Prize for physics for her work in ultra-fast laser science.

The skills our students learn in physics are invaluable. They learn how to think within the scientific method and learn problem solving skills and concepts that are so broadly applied to the other sciences. Physics is among the best preparation for a career in science whether in physics and astronomy per se, or chemistry, biology, medicine, nanoscience, atomic and nuclear science, environmental science, or material science.


Students may count courses from a major, concentration and/or minor towards a second major, concentration and/or minor; however, students must complete a minimum of 50 percent of unique courses toward the second major, concentration and/or minor, unless otherwise stated in the Undergraduate Academic Calendar.

To obtain a minor in Physics, students must fulfill the following requirements:

❏ PHYS 1101 and 1102

❏ 2.0 additional units of PHYS at the 2000 level or above

Note: PHYS 1120 and 1130 may not be included

Academic Note: This web-based calendar information is applicable for the 2024-2025 academic year which runs from September 01, 2024 to August 31, 2025.

For information on previous years, please consult the University Academic Calendars web page.

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