MathPhysics Joint Major
The MathPhysics Joint Major program was created to appeal to students whose interests embrace both mathematics and physics in roughly equal measure. This program of study prepares students for further study in either discipline, or for work in a broad array of technical and nontechnical fields.
The program requires 18.5 units of mathematics, 22 units of physics, 2 or 3 units of scientific computation, and 6 units of a capstone, for a minimum of 48.5 units, leaving 9 units of electives.
Units  Course  Topic  Advice 

3  Mathematics 55  Discrete Mathematics  
3  Mathematics 82  Differential Equations  
3  Mathematics 131  Mathematical Analysis I  
3  Mathematics 115  Fourier Series and Boundary Value Problems  Note that Math 115 is offered in the spring while Math 180 is offered in the fall 
or  
3  Mathematics 180  Introduction to Partial Differential Equations  
1.5  Mathematics 157  Intermediate Probability  
3  Mathematics 171  Abstract Algebra I  
1  Mathematics 198  Math Forum  
0.5  Mathematics 199  Math Colloquium 
Units  Course  Topics  Advice 

3  Physics 51  Electromagnetic Theory and Optics  
3  Physics 52  Quantum Physics  
1  Physics 54  Modern Physics Lab  
3  Physics 111  Theoretical Mechanics  
3  Physics 116  Quantum Mechanics  
3  Physics 117  Statistical Mechanics  
2  Physics 134  Optics Laboratory  
3  Physics 151  Electromagnetic Fields  Note that Physics 154 and Physics 156 are typically offered in alternate years 
or  
3  Physics 154  Fields and Waves  
or  
3  Physics 156  Classical Field Theory  
0.5  Physics 195  Physics Colloquium  
0.5  Physics 196  Physics Colloquium 
Units  Course  Topics  Advice 

3  Mathematics 164  Scientific Computing  Physics 170 is offered in the spring 
or  
3  Mathematics 165  Numerical Analysis  
or  
2  Physics 170  Computational Methods in Physics  
6  Capstone  Thesis or Clinic  Students completing a thesis follow the practices and guidelines of the thesis advisor’s department 
The following courses may be of particular interest to Joint MathematicsPhysics majors
Units  Course  Topics  Advice 

3  Mathematics 136  Complex Variables and Integral Transforms  Students who take Math 180 instead of Math 115 are encouraged to take Math 136 
3  Mathematics 142  Differential Geometry  
3  Mathematics 181  Dynamical Systems  
2  Physics 161  Topics in Quantum Theory 
The schedule listed below shows the required courses and when they
are customarily taken by students who take Physics 23
in their first semester at the College. Those who begin with Physics 51
may wish to take some courses earlier than listed
here; those taking a semester abroad may end up postponing some
courses by a year. This schedule is simply a guide to the possible
ways to complete the physics major. Be sure to discuss your options
and choices with your advisor.
Legend
core  a required course in the Common Core 
requirement  a technical requirement for all physics majors 
elective  an optional course 
HSA  a course partially fulfilling requirements of the Humanities, Social Sciences, and Arts program 
Fall  Spring 

All students take Physics 23 – Special Relativity (1.5) in either the first half or the second half of the semester (opposite Writ 1).  Most students take Physics 24 – Mechanics and Wave Motion. Students with very strong backgrounds in mechanics may place into Physics 24A – Mechanics and Wave Motion, which spends less time presenting material and focuses more on challenging application problems. 
Physics 23 — Special Relativity (1.5)  Physics 24 — Mechanics and Wave Motion (4) or Physics 24A — Mechanics and Wave Motion (3) 
PE (1) 
Fall  Spring 

Mathematics 55 is a requirement for many upperdivision mathematics courses, so it is helpful to take it early. 
In 2022 two versions of an optional 3unit course on climate and society will be offered: CORE 179A and CORE 179B. The following year, it will likely be a required part of the new core. Optional physics courses accessible to students at this level include:

Physics 51 — Electromagnetic Theory and Optics (3)  Mathematics 115 — Fourier Series and Boundary Value Problems (3) 
Mathematics 82 — Differential Equations (3)  Physics 52 — Quantum Physics (3) 
Engr 79 — Introduction to Systems Engineering (3)  Physics 54 — Modern Physics Lab (1) 
HSA (3)  HSA (3) 
Physics 50 — Physics Laboratory (1)  HSA (3) 
Mathematics 55 — Discrete Mathematics (3)  Elective (3) 
PE (1)  PE (1) 
Fall  Spring 

Upper division theoretical physics courses, including Physics 111 – Theoretical Mechanics, are generally more demanding than prior courses and rely on mathematically more sophisticated approaches to solving physical problems. Mathematics 131 – Mathematical Analysis I develops the rigorous foundation of calculus. Plan your course load carefully to get the most out of this semester. Possible additional physics courses this semester include

This is perhaps the best semester for studying abroad, if you are so inclined. Both Physics 116 and Physics 134 can be taken in the senior year without cramping your schedule. See your advisor for more information on preparing for foreign study. For those remaining on the HMC campus, this is a good semester to consider taking an upperdivision halfcourse. Possibilities include

Mathematics 131 — Mathematical Analysis I (3)  Mathematics 171 — Abstract Algebra I (3) 
Mathematics 198 — Math Forum (1)  Mathematics 199 — Math Colloquium (0.5) 
Physics 111 — Theoretical Mechanics (3)  Physics 116 — Quantum Mechanics (3) 
Physics 195 — Physics Colloquium (0.5)  Physics 134 — Optics Laboratory (2) 
HSA (3)  Physics 170 — Computational Methods in Physics (2) 
HSA (3)  HSA (3) 
Elective (3)  HSA (3) 
Fall  Spring 

Research or clinic work is a major focus of this semester. It is important to budget sufficient time to get the most out of these experiences. Students applying to graduate schools should allow time for researching schools, completing applications, and preparing for the graduate records exam [GRE], offered in October and November. This work is equivalent to roughly 3–4 units. NB: Covid19 has led ETS to cancel the fall subject tests in 2021. Possible half courses

Research is a focus of this semester. For those heading to graduate school, have your frequent flyer number handy and budget time for trips to visit schools. This is also the time to take Physics 154 – Fields and Waves or Physics 156 – Classical Field Theory, which you will find especially useful preparation for graduate work in many fields. For those looking for jobs, plan on spending time identifying companies, preparing your resume, and interviewing. [You’re most welcome to take Physics 154 or Physics 156, too!] Possible halfcourses this term:

Clinic or Thesis (3)  Clinic or Thesis (3) 
Mathematics 157 — Intermediate Probability (1.5)  Physics Elective (3) 
Physics 117 — Statistical Mechanics (3)  HSA (3) 
Physics 195 — Physics Colloquium (0.5)  HSA (3) 
HSA (3)  Elective (3) 
HSA (3) 