Admission into the program

Brief Program Description: The Ph.D. degree in chemical physics provides an interdisciplinary curriculum for those students whose primary research interests are in atomic and molecular physics and physical chemistry. While requiring the student to complete a rigorous selection of courses that outline the foundations of modern chemical physics, the program also offers extreme flexibility in the choice of dissertation topic as the student may choose any of the affiliated faculty in either the Department of Physics or the Department of Chemistry to serve as a research adviser. The program is offered by the College of Science.

Program Objectives/Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs):

  • Theoretical knowledge
  • Research methods, planning, and experiment design
  • Literature research and communication skills
  • Scientific creativity and independence

The Chemical Physics program confers only the Ph.D. degree. The Admissions to Department of Chemistry graduate website may also provide helpful resources. Master’s degree students follow the course of study laid out by either the physics or chemistry department. Admission of a student into the Chemical Physics program can occur by one of three routes: either:

  1. Direct admission into the Chemical Physics Ph.D. program following the completion of an undergraduate or Master’s degree, or
  2. Admission into the Ph.D. degree program of either the chemistry or physics department with subsequent induction into the Chemical Physics program upon satisfactory performance in courses and/or the comprehensive examination (see below).

Admission into the program will be decided by the individual departments’ admissions committees under consultation with the Chemical Physics Program director. The department through which a student gains admission to the program will henceforth be referred to as the “admitting department.” Financial support for an incoming student, usually in the form of a teaching or research assistantship, is administered by the admitting department and/or by individual research groups.

Graduate School academic requirements: All graduate students must maintain a cumulative graduate GPA of 3.0. If their GPA drops below 3.0, they are either placed on probation or dismissed. Undergraduate courses will not count towards graduate GPA.

Probation: students whose cumulative graduate GPA falls between 2.31 and 2.99 are automatically placed on academic probation for one semester. If they fail to raise their cumulative GPA to 3.0 by the end of one semester, they are dismissed from their graduate program. Thesis, dissertation, S/U graded credits, and transfer credits have no impact on a student’s GPA.

Dismissal: students whose cumulative graduate GPA is 2.30 or lower are dismissed. Dismissed students are no longer enrolled in their graduate program but may take graduate-level courses as a Grad Special. Dismissed students wishing to complete their degree must obtain approval to take graduate-level courses, raise their graduate GPA to at least 3.0, and then re-apply to their graduate program. Any courses taken in an effort to raise their GPA will be included in the graduate special/ transfer credit limitation (9 credits for master’s degrees).

Please refer to Nevada System of Higher Education CODE on Student Program Dismissal Procedures (SPDP) and review conference policies: (NSHE CODE, Chapter 11, Sections 1-3). If program dismissal is based upon failure to maintain required grades or a required GPA as described above, SPDP does not apply and the student may be summarily dismissed from the graduate program.

The Graduate Student Association (GSA) represents all graduate students and promotes the welfare and interests of the graduate students at the University of Nevada, Reno. The GSA works closely with appropriate university administrative offices, including the Graduate School and Student Services and reports to the President of the University. The GSA government functions through the Council of Representatives, Executive Council and established committees.