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Student in Matt Graham's lab

A graduate degree in physics provides fulfilling research and excellent job prospects

Students who earn graduate degrees in physics find employment in a variety of industries, in government laboratories and in academia. Our graduates are presently employed by leading industries and universities in the U.S., and many of our foreign students have returned to their home countries to important academic positions.

The Department of Physics has active research groups in seven main areas of current physics research:

  • Astrophysics
  • Biophysics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • High Energy Physics
  • Optical Physics
  • Physics Education Research
  • Quantum Mechanics and Quantum Cosmology

Important information for current students

Degree information

Graduate students in physics learn from world-class physicists in a vibrant and diverse department comprising a broad range of experimental and theoretical physics. Our classes are structured to ensure that every student has the chance to ask questions and understand how the material connects to their research.

Learn more about physics courses and academic planning 

Student life

As a graduate student you will have unlimited opportunities to build your leadership potential, from teaching to serving on the graduate student council. Oregon State strives to be sensitive to emotional and cultural concerns as well as academic performance. You will have access a variety of counseling services, as well as more than 50 clubs and seven cultural centers to help you build community.

Student life 

Funding graduate school

Physics graduate students are offered full support as graduate teaching assistants, graduate research assistants, fellows or a combination during their graduate studies. In addition, graduate students can also apply for various internal scholarships, fellowships and awards through the Graduate School and College of Science.


Every graduate student in the Department of Physics is advised by one of our research-active faculty members who foster them in their division of physics. In addition, physics professor Yun-Shik Lee serves as our lead physics graduate advisor and is available to meet with new students.


Prospective students

Join our thriving community of students and researchers who are working to advance knowledge from the earth to the depths of the solar system. Physics graduate students participate in a rigorous and wide-ranging program of study that affords them numerous opportunities to present their research at national and international conferences as well as research internships in labs beyond OSU.

Ready to get started? 


Graduate school is about so much more than just coursework. It is about developing skills that will be useful in your scientific career, such as presenting your research and building professional relationships. In the Department of Physics, we pride ourselves on providing numerous opportunities to build this skillset, from hosting seminars, colloquia and other student-centered organizations.