Physics & Astronomy
Physics & Astronomy

The Department of Physics and Astronomy cultivates an educational environment that prepares skilled scientists for a successful career. Our students and faculty are engaged in the study, creation, and dissemination of new knowledge through scholarship of discovery, teaching, application and integration. We strive to foster wonder about the world, both inside of the classroom and in the community around us.

Our department provides students with opportunities for hands-on research, scholarships, summer experiences, student-to-student tutoring, and workplace preparation, all made possible by the generosity of donors. Donor funding is the cornerstone of the student experience in our department, used to prepare students to fulfill their future career and postgraduate goals.

Student Testimonials

Being a student researcher, tutor, lab assistant, and a member of the Constellation Crew during my time as a Ball State physics student has prepared me in a multitude of ways for opportunities after graduation. I value the personal connection that I have found within the department and the way that it provides a chance to participate in one-on-one research projects. The community here allows for professors to remember details about your life, and vice versa.

                                                                                    - Kyle, Class of '21

Receiving my assistantship was of paramount importance to me, personally. Not only did it come with a significant tuition reduction, but the stipend allows me to focus completely on my coursework and research. Without the assistantship, I would not have been able to achieve my goal to continue my education. It relieves a significant amount of the financial burden and stress that usually accompanies higher education. As such, it has allowed me to be a much better student, researcher, and most importantly, a better instructor for my students.

                                                                      - Greg, Graduate Assistant

 During my time at BSU, I have had the Dr. James Watson Jr. Memorial Physics Scholarship and have also worked as a tutor and TA in the department. Being able to practice tutoring and teaching skills as an employee has helped prepare me for graduate school; I feel ready to begin teaching once I begin a graduate program. The scholarship has also lifted a financial burden off my family, which is always an appreciated thing.

                                                                                 - Elaine, Class of '21

My student employment here at Ball State has not only given me a way to relieve some of my financial stresses but has allowed me to form many professional and personal friendships. I have met and collaborated with many professionals through the planetarium and have become close friends with many of my coworkers, all of whom share a passion for science. It has provided me a community full of support to navigate through my undergraduate with. I feel my experiences working at Ball State have prepared me well for graduate school and my professional career beyond that.

                                                                                   - Melanie, Class of '21

See what people are sharing about One Ball State Day 2021!
6,323 Gifts Unlocks $3,000 for the Multicultural Center
Upon receiving 6,323 gifts, $3,000 will be unlocked for the new Multicultural Center!
6,323 / 6,323 Gifts
Unlock $3,000 for Student Emergency Aid
Upon receiving 6,323 gifts (beating last year's total number of gifts), $3,000 will be unlocked for Student Emergency Aid!
6,323 / 6,323 Gifts
5 Hours, 5 Areas, $1,000 Each
The 5 areas that raise the most money from 7pm-Midnight will each receive $1,000!
Rank Prize Department Raised
1 $1,000 Athletics $30,956.02
2 $1,000 Theatre & Dance $17,061.74
3 $1,000 Indiana Academy $9,981.41
4 $1,000 College of Architecture & Planning $4,541.68
5 $1,000 Center for Information & Communication Sciences $4,046.26
Academic Department Leaderboard
The three academic departments with the most gifts by midnight will receive $8,000, $4,000 and $2,000 in challenge funds respectively.
Rank Prize Academic Department Gifts
1 $8,000 Theatre & Dance 1,500
2 $4,000 Communication Studies 463
3 $2,000 School of Music 315
4 Modern Languages & Classics 230
5 Miller Business Honors Program 217
College Leaderboard
The three colleges with the most gifts by midnight April 6 will receive $3,000, $2,000, and $1,000 respectively.
Rank Prize Colleges Gifts
1 $3,000 College of Fine Arts 1,899
2 $2,000 College of Communication, Information, and Media 1,292
3 $1,000 Teachers College 952
4 College of Sciences and Humanities 876
5 Miller College of Business 467
Noon Challenge
The department/unit/team that has the most donors by noon receives $5,000 in challenge funds.
Rank Prize Department, Unit, or Team Donors
1 $5,000 Theatre & Dance 377
2 Athletics 329
3 The Ball State Fund 161
4 Student Scholarships 109
5 College of Architecture & Planning 102
Most Donors Challenge
The department/unit/team that has the most donors by midnight will receive $5,000 in challenge funds.
Rank Prize Areas Donors
1 $5,000 Theatre & Dance 1,023
2 Athletics 888
3 Indiana Academy 261
4 School of Music 191
5 College of Architecture & Planning 187
Top 5 Donor Challenge
The five units with the most donors by midnight will each receive $1,000
Rank Prize Department Donors
1 $1,000 Theatre & Dance 1,023
2 $1,000 Athletics 888
3 $1,000 Indiana Academy 261
4 $1,000 School of Music 191
5 $1,000 College of Architecture & Planning 187
Evening Leaderboard
The needs of our students are greater than ever! The five areas with the most donors between 8pm-11pm will each receive $1,000 for their area!
Rank Prize Department Donors
1 $1,000 Theatre & Dance 323
2 $1,000 Athletics 169
3 $1,000 Miller Business Honors Program 81
4 $1,000 Indiana Academy 62
5 $1,000 Spectrum 61
Dean Maureen McCarthy Challenge
Dean McCarthy will give $500 to the College of Sciences & Humanities department with the most unique number donors.
Rank Prize Department Donors
1 $500 English 80
2 Geography 72
3 History 56
4 Modern Languages & Classics 42
5 Philosophy and Religious Studies 31
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