Medical Physics Graduate Program

The Medical Physics Graduate Program offers MS degrees (with either a Thesis or Non-Thesis option) and PhD degrees in Medical Sciences with a concentration in Medical Physics.

Candidates for all graduate degrees must be in good standing with the graduate school, having a GPA of 3.0/4.0 or greater, and have no “Incomplete” grades on their transcripts.

In the video below, Dr Barreto, Associate Professor, answers questions commonly asked by students. This video was made in collaboration with the Public Education Committee of the American Association of Physicists in Medicine (AAPM).

Master of Science

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  • Prerequisites for the program include a Bachelor’s degree with the equivalent of an undergraduate minor in Physics, defined as completion of a two-semester calculus-based introductory physics course and three advanced physics courses. Examples of acceptable advanced courses include Modern Physics, Quantum Physics, Electricity & Magnetism, etc. Courses primarily related to engineering, chemistry, health, or medical physics do not satisfy this requirement.
  • Students may be admitted into the program without the full completion of this prerequisite, but must establish an academic plan for the completion of the required courses as early as their course schedule permits.
  • Additional recommended courses include Technical Communications and at least one advanced programming language.

Minimum Course Work

  • The minimum course work required by the Graduate School for a Master of Science degree with thesis is 30 credit hours, including up to 6 credits of thesis research credit.
  • The Graduate School requirement for a Master of Science with the non-thesis option is at least 30 credits with no more than 6 credits of S/U graded courses.
  • The course work required for the MS in the Medical Physics Program is illustrated in the Sample Curriculum.
  • Students who have previously completed the subject matter included in the program’s standard curriculum may petition the faculty to be exempt from the subject requirement of specific courses, but they must still comply with the Graduate School’s minimum requirements.


  • Courses in the curriculum are typically offered once per year.
  • Most courses are offered every year, but the faculty reserve the right to defer a course from its normal offering in the event of low student enrollment.
  • The Master’s degree curriculum provides traditional didactic training, clinical training, and research training.
  • Graduate studies begin with didactic training, and students transition to clinical and research projects as they progress.
  • Clinical experience through laboratory sessions integrated with the clinical course sequences (Diagnostic Radiological Physics I-III and Therapeutic Radiological Physics I-II) provide students with an overview of clinical physics in diagnostic radiology and radiation oncology.
  • Master’s degree candidates are also required to complete a research project, submitted as either a non-thesis project or a formal Master’s thesis.

Doctor of Philosophy

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Minimum Course Work

  • The PhD degree requires a minimum of 90 credits beyond the bachelor’s degree and must have been earned in the last seven years.
  • No more than 30 hours of a Master’s degree from another institution may be transferred to a doctoral program.
  • PhD students must complete the MS coursework, or demonstrate the equivalent subject coverage in courses taken at other institutions.
  • Additional course requirements for doctoral degrees are dictated by the student’s field of research and are defined by the student’s supervisory committee.
  • Prior to being admitted to candidacy the student must complete a written comprehensive examination in medical physics, and successfully present a research proposal to their supervisory committee.
  • Finally, they must successfully defend their dissertation to meet graduation requirements.