Foucault Pendulum in Kreger Hall

Quick Facts

Did You Know...

Kreger Hall Entrance

► There are about 70 undergraduate majors in the Physics Department, with 14 full time faculty members.

► 70% of physics undergraduates engage in research before graduation, and 15-20% of those are co-authors on research papers.

Access to Advising

Physics students in class

Miami University's retention rate of 92% ranks it among the best in the nation for students returning for their sophomore year. A major in the physics department is assigned an adviser in their first year who will remain their adviser throughout their undergraduate education. View current advisors »

Student Activities

President Ethan Clements grilling at the picnic

Miami University has an active chapter of the Society of Physics Students. Regular activities include weekly meetings, outreach, field trips, and fun, with two annual picnics and monthly pizza and movie nights.

Astronomy Club

Miami University Astronomy Club 3 planets eastern sky

The Miami University Astronomy Club meets regularly during the academic year. With a Questar, several other telescopes, and a remote observatory, students can observe in all types of weather.

Undergraduate Research

JYR research group

Undergraduates have the opportunity to conduct research beginning in the first year. Undergraduate and graduate students often work side by side to achieve their research goals. View current research groups »

Presentation experiences

Student presenting at Frontiers in Optics

Undergraduates in physics have the opportunity to present research findings at national meetings. Pictured are Perry Rice and his student, Ethan Stanifer, at the Frontiers in Optics conference in Orlando, FL.

Announcements and News

Summer 2022 REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) Program

We are now accepting applications for our 2022 Summer REU Program. The program supports up to ten undergraduate students doing research with physics and engineering faculty from May 31 to August 6, 2022. The program is NSF-supported and is open to US citizens and permanent residents. Women and traditionally under-represented groups in STEM are strongly encouraged to apply. The application deadline is February 14, 2022. Visit the REU Program webpage for details and application form.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Updates

Spring 2022 Course Announcement

Explore the physics of...

Self assembly, molecular machines, and emergent interactions

Molecular & Cellular Biophysics PHY 421/521 (4 credits), CRN: 90323

MWF 8:30-9:45 am, 227 Kreger Hall

Instructor: Professor Paul Urayama (

Introduction to the physics foundation of life, including

  • transport properties
  • scaling properties in fluids
  • statistical mechanics of reactions
  • self-assembly
  • stochasticity and fluctuations

Development of physical models for biological systems, including

  • cooperative behavior in macromolecules
  • enzyme activity
  • molecular machines
  • energy transduction
  • nerve transmission

Physics majors...learn about physics in the meso-scale, the (not necessarily intuitive) bridge between quantum and classical worlds.

Prerequisites: PHY 192 and (Calc III or Calc II with an additional math course), or instructor permission.

Textbook: Philip Nelson (Physics, U Penn). Biological Physics Student Edition:Energy, Information, Life, 2020.

Course offered spring of even years.

Reese Featured as Graduate Student of the Week

Shopping for a Graduate School?

The highly-anticipated GradSchoolShopper magazine, created by the American Institute of Physics, is now available. The online resource is here to help students of the physical sciences make informed decisions about graduate school. That means providing everything from admission rates and financial aid information to data about the specialties of individual faculty members in an easy-to-use format. Read the inaugural issue here and check out our ad among all the great content awaiting students.

The student guide to grad school in physics, astronomy, and related fields

Academic Advising

If you are interested in becoming a physics major or have questions and would like to meet with our department advisor remotely, head over to our academic advising webpage for more details.

Senior Biological Physics Major Colbrunn Receives Scholarship

The Ohio Space Grant Consortium (OSGC) offers a scholarship and research grant to Ohio students who propose a research project in line with one of NASA's four mission directorates [Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD); Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate (HEOMD); Science Mission Directorate (SMD); and Space Technology Mission Directorate (STMD)]. Along with Dr. Vishwanath, undergraduate Boyd Colbrunn wrote a proposal for a project titled "Development of a Probe for Diffuse Reflectance Spectroscopy with Variable Source-Detector Separation." As a part of the program, Boyd will be presenting his research in April at the Annual Student Research Symposium at the Ohio Aerospace Institute in Cleveland, Ohio.

The Scholarship is funded by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) through its National Space Grant College and Fellowship Program. Awards to Bachelor’s students for the academic year are funded at $3,500 ($2,500 is provided by NASA through the Ohio Space Grant Consortium, and $1,000 is provided by Miami University.) Scholarships begin in the Fall of 2021.


Urayama Group Receives Feature Paper in Molecules Journal

The latest publication from Prof. Paul Urayama’s lab “Cellular NADH and NADPH Conformation as a Real-Time Fluorescence-Based Metabolic Indicator under Pressurized Conditions” appears as a Feature Paper in the journal Molecules. Based on recommendation from their scientific editors, “Feature Papers represent the most advanced research with significant potential for high impact in the field…This type of paper provides an outlook on future directions of research or possible applications.” Results from the paper point to new avenues of investigation in piezophysiology by providing a way of visualizing metabolism and mitochondrial function under pressurized conditions. Work for the paper was performed by both master’s and undergraduate students in the department and is a collaboration with Prof. Fumiyoshi Abe (Aoyama Gakuin University, Japan), a recognized leader in high-pressure microbiology.