Prospective Graduate Students

Thank you for your interest in the graduate program in Physics at Brown University!  We hope that you will carefully review the information and links provided here to help you learn more about the programs we offer and how you can apply.

The faculty and the culture make Brown University an exceptional place to explore the frontiers of physics.  Our teachers and researchers are accomplished, accessible, and collaborative. Brown’s doctoral and master’s training prepares students for multiple career paths. Here is a sample of locations where recent graduates have found employment.

The opportunities to be found here at this smaller Ivy League university are vast. Our department faculty members include: two Nobel Prize winners, two AAAS Fellows, six Sloan Research Fellows, six American Physical Society Fellows, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, among other honors.  They conduct research in astrophysics and cosmology and in high energy, condensed matter and biological physics that is interdisciplinary and international in scope. Our graduate students train with 27 physics professors and 8 affiliated faculty, primarily in engineering, applied mathematics, biology, and chemistry. Multidisciplinary inquiry is encouraged. The academic program is rigorous yet flexible, combining strong core training with multiple options for more specialized studies. We foster a strong sense of community not always found in larger departments.

Brown’s affiliations provide national and international research opportunitiesEasy access to seminars and courses of the greater Boston area universities enriches our intellectual life.

Professors are engaged in both teaching and research and they mentor both graduate and undergraduate students. Mentoring intellectually curious undergraduates provides our graduate students with teaching and leadership experience. Graduate students enjoy contact with an array of faculty and other members of the learning community through journal clubs and weekly seminar series, which are organized by research areas. What begins as mentoring at Brown usually becomes a lifelong intellectual journey and partnership.

We seek strong applicants who value community, have an unabashed curiosity about physics, and are open-minded about learning. People who excel here are self-motivated scientists who want to discover their capacity through studies and who applaud their peers’ discoveries.

Note that we offer both a Master's Program and a Doctoral Program. The PhD program is more selective than the master's program.  PhD students can earn a master's degree automatically on the way to completing their PhD, but students admitted to the master's program cannot automatically transition to the PhD track. Therefore, students should apply to the program most suited to their career goals.  Alternately, students may apply to both programs by filing two separate applications.

Graduate School Information:
Graduate School Admissions
International Applicants
Master's Funding
PhD Funding
Financial Considerations
Living and Resources


We receive countless inquiries each year concerning our programs, many of which could be avoided by careful reading of the information on our website and that of the Graduate School.  Please help us to be as efficient as possible by seeking answers to your questions  here or by digging in here on our website (including our FAQ page) before submitting an inquiry.  Thank you!

Department of Physics Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

For questions regarding the application process, please see the CollegeNet application directions or the CollegeNet Help Desk.

For general questions regarding requirements, etc, please contact the Graduate School Admissions Staff:

For program or department specific questions, please contact the Student Affairs and Program Manager, Mary Ellen Woycik.

Information for Admitted Students