Masters Degree in Physics

Caltech commencement

A Master of Science degree in physics will be awarded, upon request, to physics Ph.D. students who have completed the oral and written candidacy examinations. Alternatively, a master's degree will be awarded to any Caltech graduate student in good standing upon satisfactory completion of a program approved by the option representative that fulfills the following requirements:

Ph 125 abc - 27 units
(If this course, or its equivalent, was taken as part of an undergraduate program, it may be replaced by 27 units of any quantum-mechanics–based course.)

Physics electives - 81 units
These must be selected from Ph 103, Ph 105, Ph 118, Ph 127, Ph 129, Ph 135, Ph 136, or physics courses numbered 200 or above.

Other electives - 27 units
These must be graduate courses from physics or any other option, including the humanities.

Substitutions of other graduate courses in place of the above requirements must be approved by the option representative.

What to do in REGIS? (For graduate students)

Log in to REGIS and navigate to the M.S. Candidacy Tab of your Graduate Degree Progress page. Select Physics from the drop down menu and click submit, this will populate the M.S. Candidacy tab. 

Whether you are using courses to earn the MS or have completed oral candidacy, you must complete the MS plan of study. Add your courses into the Plan of Study section or click "Copy from PhD Plan of Study". When complete, click the "Submit Plan of Study to Option Rep" button. This will generate the notices required for approvals of your MS.

In exceptional cases, undergraduate students may receive concurrent B.S./M.S. degrees if the above requirements are met in addition to the relevant B.S. requirements, upon approval from the Physics Graduate Committee, the graduate admissions committee, and the physics executive officer. Such students must produce a detailed petition demonstrating accomplishments that would warrant normal admission to the physics graduate program.