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Any colleges offering A bach in Physics online?

  1. Aug 14, 2009 #1
    Was wondering if anyone knew of any colleges out there that maybe offering physics undergraduate degree programs that are completely online?

    I searched google for hours and could not come up with any. Only some colleges that offer a couple physics for engineers and scientist online classes, nothing more. There's gotta be schools out there that do. Most state colleges that do offer online programs are not advertised on google or any of the search engines. I'm a NY state resident and here we have SLN (Suny Learning network) which is a network that offers many online classes and even full degree programs online from various state colleges in NY, and you won't find any of these NY programs on any search engine. So I imagine the possibility of there being several colleges that must offer a physics online program from some other state...not doubt. SLN does not offer any advanced online degrees, but they are working on getting an undergraduates electronics engineering program online, but it is waiting approval.
    Any suggestions would be appreciated.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 14, 2009 #2
    Science and engineering programs are not particularly well-suited to the online format. A good professor adds much more to lectures than can be gained from just reading, and additional (especially mathematical) explanations are hard to get across by electronic means. And of course, any reputable physics degree has to include upper-level labs, which can't be satisfied via the "go to your local community college" route. Finally, I can't believe there's enough demand for physics distance learning for someone to be able to profitably offer it.

    In my experience (as an observer of both teachers and students; I've never done it myself), online courses are a dreadful way to learn. Use them to get a job credential or cheaply take care of distribution requirements, not because you want to gain a deep understanding of a subject.
  4. Aug 14, 2009 #3


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    Indeed. My school offers a decent number of classes online, mostly general education requirements, but also sometimes the introductory level classes for various disciplines. I took the introductory physics level class online. I got an A. But I was the only student that passed the class, out of about 50 students. All the grades were posted online (without the students' names, of course), and most students had averages like 20 or 30. Yes, out of a 100 scale. It was crazy. I don't know if they actually failed the whole class or if they applied a massive curve to the grades; I never knew anyone in the class, so... It's weird because when I saw those grades, I figured "Wow, I bet they're going to stop offering this class online, because surely they can't just keep offering the class in a format where almost everyone fails!" But no, they still offer the class online.

    I also took a Computer Science class online, and the results were pretty bad there too, although not quite so horrifying.

    Anyway, to echo the previous reply, I doubt a school would be successful in offering an entirely online program in physics.
  5. Aug 14, 2009 #4
    I too took college physics I & II algebra/trig based completely on line from Herkimer County Community College. And by the way I aced them both. Actually many of the students passed. Half would eventually drop the class.
  6. Aug 14, 2009 #5
    Well online learning may not be for some. I have certainly excelled at it. As for entire physics degrees online, well I concur with your response. But several reputable universities do offer physics for engineers and scientists calc based classes completely online as well as calculus I through III all online. University of North Dakota offers electrical & mechanical engineering bachelors degrees completely online that are ABET approved. But for the lab portion, you have to go on campus for a week during the summer to complete the lab part.
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