Join us in asking and exploring answers to the the age-old question, “Why does it work?”

As a physics major or minor, you’ll find that you’re able to contribute to our research programs right from the beginning. Even before you enroll as a physics student, there are opportunities for you to start taking part in our research programs. Once you’re a student in our courses, we listen to what you want to learn, designing our elective options based on your interests.

Explore how the world works

Physics is an investigative science testing theory against experimental measurements.

Discover something new

Learning through experimenting and collaborative research is a hallmark of our department — and of Hope College. It’s important for our students to learn directly alongside faculty members as research apprentices. Not only will you be learning something new, but you’ll be contributing directly to the field. View our blog for more information about our research groups.

Learn from the best

Each faculty member's research program is supported by external grants they've earned through competative programs. We currently have active awards totalling over $1 million. We’ve been funded by many prestigious, national groups, including:

For detailed information, view our faculty pages.

Recent blog posts

  1. Summer Research Program 2018

    Posted by Jennifer Hampton

    Apply online at https://sharp.hope.edu. Choose from a range of externally funded research projects: ...

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  2. Higher Education Research Experiences (HERE) Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL)

    Posted by Catherine Mader

    Opportunities for qualified students, alumni, and faculty to participate in hands-on research in a r...

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  3. The Grit, The Disparities and Their Stories

    Posted by Catherine Mader

    Join the Hope Women in Science and Engineering club members for a panel discussion featuring 5 women...

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  4. “Talking” Electrons: Does It Happen In Collisions Of Ions With Atoms?

    Posted by Catherine Mader

    John Tanis PhD, Physics Department, Western Michigan University Friday, Nov 3 at 3 pm Can electrons ...

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  5. Interfaces for battery and solar cell applications – atomic level understanding using X-ray based Spectroscopy

    Posted by Catherine Mader

    Professor Håkan Rensmo Uppsala University Uppsala, Sweden Tuesday, September 19 at 3:00pm in VW104 ...

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  6. SPS Sponsored research talks by three Hope students:

    Posted by Catherine Mader

    Friday, September 15 at 3:00pm “Depolarization and Scattering Signatures of Spherical Particles”...

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Hope by the Numbers

  • 2.7 millionVolts

    Our laboratory houses the 2.7 million volt Van de Graaf particle accelerator.

    Learn more
  • 80%Graduate School

    Our department sends students to graduate school in physics, materials science, medical physics and medicine. Those who don’t pursue further education often succeed in careers in national and industrial labs, business and secondary education.

  • $1 millionRecent Grants

    Our faculty has received over $1 million in recent grants toward their research.

    Find research opportunities
  • $70kMedian Salary

    The median salary for physicists with bachelor’s degrees is $70,000, and can increase by 41% for physicists with graduate degrees.

    Imagine life after Hope