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Physics and Astronomy Minors

The minor in physics and the minor in astronomy are suitable for students who wish to supplement a related discipline or simply have a general interest in the field. Note that research done through Independent Study (3860) or Directed Study (3840)  is not a requirement of either minor but is permitted and encouraged. Students must obtain approval from a faculty research supervisor and the Director of Undergraduate Studies before enrolling in either of these classes.

Students seeking a minor will be assigned an advisor from the list of faculty given at the link Advisors for PHYS Majors. Students are encouraged to seek advice about physics and/or astronomy and be mentored by any faculty member in the department. The official advisors listed below are particularly knowledgeable on curricular matters and support systems at Vanderbilt University. They are also the ones who have the authority to sign official paperwork.

Minor in Physics

Any first-semester physics class (1501, 1601, 1911, or 2051) 3-4 hours
Any first-semester physics laboratory (1501L, 1601L, 1912L, 2052) 1 hour
Any second-semester physics class  (1502, 1602, 1912 or 2053) 3-4 hours
Any second-semester physics laboratory (1502L, 1602L, 2255L, 2054) 1 hour
Physics 2255 or 3651 3 hours

Six credit hours of electives. These may be selected from any 2000-level or higher-level PHYS courses not used to satisfy the above requirements or from three credit hour non-PHYS courses, the latter if approved by the Director of Undergraduate Studies, and may include up to three credit hours of research (3850, 3851, 4998).

6 hours
Total Hours: 17-19 hours

 

Minor in Astronomy

Astronomy 1010 and either 1010L or 1020L; or 1210 4 hours
ASTR 2110 3 hours
ASTR 3000 3 hours
Two other astronomy courses, one of which may be a three credit hour one semester research project (3850, 3851, 4998).  Note that only Physics majors pursuing Honors in Astronomy are eligible to enroll in 4998.  6
Total Hours: 16 hours

Note that the rules for Minor in Physics changed for academic year 2017-2018.  Under the old rules, students needed to take either PHYS 2250W or 2260W (rather than 2255 or 3651).  Students also needed to take the one-credit-hour seminar PHYS 3600.  Students seeking to complete the PHYS minor under the pre-2017 rules who have questions about their individual plans for the minor should discuss their plans with the Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Note that the rules for Minor in Astronomy changed for academic year 2017-2018. Under the old rules, students were required to take ASTR 1010 and 1010L or 3000 and 1010L, plus four other three-credit-hour ASTR courses (one of which could be a 3-credit-hour directed study in ASTR, 3840), plus two semesters of the one-credit-hour seminar ASTR 2600. Because ASTR 2600 is no longer offered, students do not need to fulfill this requirement under the old rules.  Students seeking to complete the ASTR minor under the pre-2017 rules who have questions about their individual plans for the minor should discuss their plans with the Director of Undergraduate Studies.