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Physics, Engineering,
and Astronomy

Dominic Critchlow works on weather balloon

The BS in Physics is a versatile degree that allows a student to design their own program around a core of physics understanding, be it interdisciplinary or physics-specific. The Physics Minor pairs well with degrees in other STEM fields.

Engineering Physics

The BSE in Engineering Physics is a career-focused degree designed to prepare students to enter a professional career in an engineering discipline.


The Astrophysics Concentration is the interdisciplinary study of stellar and galactic evolution and the origins of the universe.

Our department offers individualized attention larger schools can't.

With the small class sizes and low student to faculty member ratio, our students have a one-on-one relationship with their academic advisor. Physics, Engineering, and Astronomy is a student-focused department with an emphasis on undergraduate research with Bachelors degrees in Physics and Engineering Physics and minors in Physics and Astronomy. There are 70 majors and 10 full-time faculty. Active research areas include Astronomy, Computational Science, Engineering, and Materials Science. All three degree programs include tracks for students participating in the APSU Honors Program. See our Honors Students page for more information.

Full-time faculty
Research Experiences each year
Student conference presentations each year


Degree Programs

Students experiment with tesla coil
Physics, BS

Physics is the study of the underlying properties of nature from the mind-bogglingly huge, like galactic superclusters, to the unimaginably small, like the fundamental constituents of matter. It is the foundation of every science and is responsible for some of the greatest discoveries and inventions of our time, like lasers, solar cells and hybrid cars.

Physics, BS Objectives & Outcomes

jeremiah at friction stir welder
Engineering Physics, BSE

Engineering Physics is the interdisciplinary study of physics, mathematics and engineering with particular emphasis on developing advanced techniques to solve complex, real-world problems. The engineering physics curriculum includes an emphasis on engineering design, much like a traditional engineering program, while also including more advanced physics than a typical engineering degree.

Engineering Physics, BSE Objectives & Outcomes

Deborah in planetarium
Astrophysics Concentration; Physics, BS

Astrophysics is the interdisciplinary study of stellar and galactic evolution and the origin of the universe.  It brings together many separate physics disciplines as well as chemistry and mathematics.

Astrophysics Concentration of the Physics, BS Objectives & Outcomes

Astronomy observatory at APSU farm
Astronomy Minor

The APSU Astronomy Minor is a versatile minor for students interested in the subject. It is suitable for students who desire a non-mathematical minor in the subject, but can also be combined with a Physics Major and more advanced astronomy electives for students wishing to pursue Astronomy or Astrophysics in graduate school.

Virginia in the chemical hood
Physics Minor

The APSU Physics Minor pairs well with physics sub-specialties in other STEM fields like Chemistry, Computer Science, Geoscience, and Mathematics.

Deborah Gulledge
Deborah Gulledge

I had more research opportunities through the APSU Physics Department than anyone I've met from any other schools. I had the chance to travel internationally and observe on some of the largest telescopes in the world, to join a research collaboration at a national laboratory, and to present my research all across America. APSU definitely prepared me well for grad school and I couldn't be happier with the education and research opportunities I was given.
Johnathan Bunton
Johnathan Bunton

After my freshman year, I already knew all the physics faculty at Austin Peay. The biggest class I’ve had was maybe 25 students, and when you’re talking about advanced quantum mechanics, that’s a really big deal to get face-to-face attention from faculty.
Joshua Allen
Joshua Allen

I had this fear students from bigger schools would be ahead of me, but what I quickly realized was we were covering things I had already learned because I had been prepared by Austin Peay.

Austin Peay sends dolls to stratosphere to celebrate women in STEM

The almost 2 hour flight reached a peak of 93,914 feet.

“Today was for the women of STEM, getting our name out there and saying we support the women of science, that we support anyone in science, that they have the potential to achieve big things in their field,” Megan McCracken, team leader for the High-Altitude Balloon Team, said. “It was having that picture of women in astronaut suits, being out there with the curvature of the Earth.”