Learn advanced courses, participate in state-of-the-art research and launch your career with a Ph.D. from the Physics and Applied Physics Department.

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Deadline for fall semester entry:
January 15

Program Overview

UMass Lowell's Ph.D. in Physics program is research-centric, preparing students for lifelong careers in academia, industry, national laboratories and entrepreneurship. The 60-credit-hour program incorporates advanced courses, comprehensive examination and a multi-year research component.

The Department offers a Ph.D. Degree in Physics with the following options:

  • General Option
  • Applied Mechanics Option (in collaboration with Dept. of Mechanical Engineering)
  • Atmospheric Science Option (in collaboration with Dept. of Earth and Atmospheric Science)
  • Energy Engineering Option (in collaboration with Dept. of Chemical Engineering)
  • Aerospace Sciences Option
We also offer options in Medical Physics and Radiological Sciences.
  • The Ph.D. program requires 60 credits, including dissertation research. Candidates for the degree must pass an oral comprehensive examination and a doctoral research admission examination. 

    Visit the graduate academic catalog and Doctorate in Physics degree pathway for complete program details and course descriptions.

  • UMass Lowell's physics Ph.D. program prepares graduates for positions in academia, national laboratories, government agencies, major medical facilities and industry. Recent graduates have worked at: 

    • Argonne National Lab
    • Boston University
    • Duke University
    • Harvard University
    • Lockheed Martin Corp.
    • Los Alamos National Lab
    • Radiation Monitoring Devices, Inc.
    • U.S. Department of Energy

Admissions & Aid

Take the next step and apply. Learn more about admission requirements, funding options and assistantships.

  • Admission Requirements

    In addition to the requirements for admission, applicants for the Ph.D. in Physics program are expected to have a sound background in intermediate-level mechanics, electricity and magnetism, quantum mechanics, and modern physics.

    For complete Admission Requirements, please visit the Academic Catalog.

    Application Process

    For a list of application materials and guidelines, please visit the Sciences Admissions Requirements.

  • The Physics Department strives to provide full financial support for all admitted Ph.D. students. 

    • The first two years are typically funded through Teaching Assistantships (TA) plus summer research support, while funding for subsequent years are through Research Assistantships (RA). 
    • As of fall 2023, the total compensation package for a UMass Lowell first-year out-of-state physics Ph.D. student is valued at up to $57,750. This includes a 12-month stipend of up to $30,000, a full waiver of tuition and operating fees, plus 80 percent of student health insurance costs. 

    Visit Tuition & Aid for Graduate Programs.

Christian Burns wears a safety mask and gloves as he pours nitrogen in a UMass Lowell lab.
Christian Burns '25

Physics Ph.D. student Christian Burns got accepted to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science Graduate Student Research program.

The professors really do teach and motivate you to learn.
Read More About Christian Burns 

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Contact Us

For program questions or to connect with our current students, please contact:

Viktor Podolskiy, Ph.D.
Graduate Coordinator, Professor

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    Funded by a U.S. Department of Energy grant, minority community college students will have an opportunity to learn about nuclear science at UMass Lowell’s Radiation Laboratory.