Undergraduate Research in Physics & Astronomy

One of the most valuable educational experiences offered by the department is the opportunity to participate in research projects with faculty members. Projects can involve laboratory work, data analysis, or computational research in particle physics, plasma physics, condensed matter physics, biophysics, or astronomy. Virtually all qualified students who seek an undergraduate research project will find a suitable project, and some students carry out research with more than one research group during their time at UCI. 

Whether you are planning to attend graduate school or pursue a career in industry or any of the many other possibilities that will be available to you, taking advantage of research opportunities is an important part of your undergraduate experience as a physics major, and one of the most enjoyable and rewarding aspects of an undergraduate education.

As a minimum, we encourage all of our majors to be involved in research during their senior year. But, we encourage students to start talking with faculty at the end of the sophomore year or during the beginning of the junior year to plan summer research projects and senior thesis research work.

There are a variety of arrangements for research during the academic year and during the summer.