Physical Sciences Bachelor Degrees and Majors

A 4-year Bachelor of Science (BS) in Physical Sciences emphasizes physics and chemistry and commonly includes courses in geology and astronomy. Find out what kind of courses, jobs, and graduate education is available.

Essential Information

A BS in Physical Sciences program is designed for aspiring science teachers, but graduates might also go on to become scientists or chemists. Through multiple laboratory classes, students gain practical experience with equipment, tools, processes, and safety procedures. Physical science bachelor's degree programs are structured to fulfill the subject matter competency requirements for teacher certification. To enroll in this program, one must have a high school diploma or equivalent. Depending on the institution, prospective students need to meet the minimum requirements for their GPA and ACT or SAT scores.

Bachelor of Science in Physical Sciences

General education courses are required and can be incorporated into the existing 4-year curriculum or completed at a community college or other accredited postsecondary school. Typical program coursework includes:

  • General chemistry
  • Modern physics and thermodynamics
  • Calculus
  • Plant biology
  • Geological sciences
  • Quantitative analysis

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

In addition to teaching, A BS in Physical Sciences can lead to several other career options, such as chemist or materials scientist. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected that chemists and materials scientists would see 3% growth in employment from 2014-2024 (slower than average). The median annual wages of chemists were $71,260 in May 2015. High school teachers of most subjects earned a 2015 median annual salary of $57,200, with 6% projected employment growth.

Continuing Education Information

If a candidate wishes to pursue graduate-level study in science education, there is a Master of Arts in General Science for Teachers available. Candidates might consider an advanced degree in a purely scientific area, such as a Master of Science in Chemistry or Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Physics. Advanced teaching degrees are also offered, including a Master of Arts in Teaching or a Doctor of Education (EdD) in K-12 Educational Leadership.

Bachelor's in physical sciences degrees teach students about different science concepts and fields, such as chemistry, physics, astronomy, etc. Earning these degrees can open up many job opportunities, as well as prepare graduates for master's or doctoral education.

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