Physics and Astronomy
The Henry A. Rowland Department of Physics and Astronomy combines a strong research program, world-renowned faculty, and state-of-the-art facilities. The instruction and research programs within the department reflect two features which have a long tradition at Johns Hopkins: an emphasis on graduate study and research, supplemented with a strong undergraduate program; and a flexibility that is possible only in a department of our size.
Our undergraduate and graduate courses are purposefully designed to provide a core group of basic subjects at the appropriate levels, which naturally lead to courses in a variety of specialized areas. All students are encouraged to engage in independent work outside of the classroom, such as special projects or independent study. The atmosphere is enhanced by the presence of NASA’s Space Telescope Science Institute—home of the Hubble Space Telescope—located just across the street.
Research in the Department of Physics and Astronomy primarily centers on three areas: astrophysics, condensed matter physics, and particle or high energy physics. The Center for Astrophysical Studies comprises areas within the discipline: cosmology, extragalactic astronomy, galactic astronomy, numerical simulations, large datasets, and instrumentation. The condensed matter physics group maintains active experimental and theoretical research programs at the forefront of both hard and soft condensed matter physics. The particle physics group conducts research in both theory and experiment.
What can you do with your degree?
A degree in physics can lead to many diverse career paths. Many of our students apply and are admitted to graduate school, either here at Johns Hopkins or at another one of the nation’s top universities. Others want to pursue research and teaching positions. Physics and astronomy graduates can also be found in the fields of engineering, law, and medicine. Still others secure employment in government or industrial laboratories.