If you’re pursuing a profession as a physics or astronomy teacher in a secondary school, a master of arts in education in physics may be right for you. Ranked among the nation’s top physics departments with the strongest professional master’s degree programs by the American Institute of Physics, our department will provide you with powerful resources, research-oriented training, and personal attention.
Our master’s program can help you be a better teacher, providing you with opportunities to work on research projects in areas such as condensed matter, nuclear physics, medical physics, nanoscience, nanomaterials, high energy/particle physics, and physics education.
In order to begin our program, you must possess a valid physics teaching license or be in the process of securing certification in physical science/physics teaching.
What You Will Learn
An MAE in physics helps you bridge the gap between your college experience and an exciting career in science or science education. In addition to coursework in physics, astronomy, and education, you will write a research paper on a research topic in one of the following areas:
- physics education
- astronomy education
What It’s Like to Earn an MAE in Physics at Ball State
In our department, you’ll have the chance to work alongside your peers and faculty PhD experts on your choice of physics-related research concentrations.
Research actively pursued in our program includes:
- astronomy and astrophysics
- computational nanoscience
- condensed matter physics
- medical physics
- nanomaterials and devices
- nuclear and radiation physics
- particle physics
- physics education
Students with a GPA of 3.0 or higher are eligible to apply for teaching assistantships with the department or through the University’s Learning Center.
These positions come with a tuition waiver, a stipend, and eligibility for student health insurance through the university, among other benefits.
Our students also frequently support themselves through jobs with Ball State’s Office of Information Technology.
Through research projects, you gain valuable professional skills and experience working with modern technical facilities and equipment. These include the College of Science and Humanities supercomputing cluster, a new 20-inch diameter telescope in the observatory, and more.
The Department of Physics and Astronomy is also a member of the SARA consortium that operates three research-grade telescopes located in some of the best sites in the world: southwest Arizona, Chile, and the Canary Islands. Our students (and occasionally high-school students) often make observations with these telescopes and become authors on published scientific papers.
Careers in education and outreach are fostered through the Charles W. Brown Planetarium on campus.
Our Society of Physics Students (SPS) is an active, student-run club that engages in a number of social and outreach programs.
The SPS organizes cooperative events with organizations on campus, including our annual “Clash of the Sciences” demo competition between physics and chemistry student groups.
This program consists of 30 credits in physics, applied physics, astronomy, and education coursework. You’ll also complete a required research paper (3 credits) in physics, physics education, astronomy, or astronomy education.
- content courses: 12-18
- professional education core: 9
- minors/non-departmental electives: 0-6
- research requirement: 3
A few of the classes you will take include:
- 12-18 credits in physics, applied physics, and astronomy courses, as approved by the department
- 9 credits in professional education courses
- a research paper
For a complete list of all the courses you will take and their descriptions, please see our Graduate Catalog.
Paying for Your Education
Not only do you get to learn from faculty who are leaders in their fields, but you can do so at one of the most competitive prices in the Midwest.
On top of the dozens of funding options offered through Ball State’s Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships, our department awards scholarships to our own students. Find a scholarship.
A graduate assistantship is an excellent opportunity to gain meaningful professional experience while helping cover the costs of your degree. Learn more.
Ready to Apply?
Are you interested in pursuing this degree? Then you will need to meet our admissions criteria and apply.
If you would like to learn more about this program or about Ball State Graduate School in general, please complete our online form to request more information. Or if you’d like to speak with someone in our department directly by phone or email, please contact us.