The joint Bachelor of Science in Physics and Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering are Purdue University degrees offered by the Department of Physics in the Purdue School of Science and the Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering in the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology.
Students in this program earn both a B.S. in Physics and an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering. This program takes advantage of the overlapping curricula of the Departments of Physics and Mechanical Engineering to allow completion of the dual degree in 142 credit hours. The two degrees, if pursued separately, would require the completion of 154 credit hours.
Physicists tend to be problem solvers, especially when those problems can be couched in mathematical terms. Physics students are trained to solve complex problems by learning to analyze complex relationships in mathematical terms. Engineers with a physics background are more flexible than those with only an engineering background—they understand more aspects of a problem, they contribute more broadly, and they can shift from one project to another with a shorter learning curve.
Undergraduates are encouraged to participate in research and work closely with faculty as they complete their degree. Students majoring in physics consolidate their undergraduate studies by putting what they have learned to use in a capstone experience in one of the department’s research laboratories. Each student joins a member of the faculty in a project that provides experience in a professional setting.
Students who complete this program learn to combine the research skills and fundamental knowledge of a physics major with the design and application skills of a mechanical engineer. Students earning these degrees will be extraordinarily well prepared for jobs in engineering, including research and development jobs.