If you are interested in majoring in physics, you should take the calculus-based physics sequence and also continue your study of mathematics through the calculus sequence (MATH 400-401-402), Linear Algebra (MATH 410), and Differential Equations (MATH 420) to prepare yourself for post-transfer upper division physics course work. ARC offers the A.S. in Physics for Transfer (AS-T) degree which can give you a preferential advantage in transferring.
Helpful Course Sequences
Conceptual Physics (PHYS 310) is a lecture course intended to give you a first introduction to the study of the physical world. You need only Pre-Algebra (Math 32) as a prerequisite to this course. You may also take the Conceptual Physics Lab (PHYS 312) concurrently with PHYS 310. Together, PHYS 310/312 can be used to fulfill one of your lecture/lab GE requirements: ARC Area IV (Natural Sciences), CSU Areas B1/B3 (Scientific Inquiry and Quantitative Reasoning), and/or IGETC Areas 5A/5C (Physical and Biological Sciences). Additionally, Basic Physics (PHYS 311) is a lecture course that can provide you with extra optional preparation for our general physics and our calculus-base physics sequences (see below). This course can also fulfill one of your lecture GE requirements: ARC Area IV, CSU Area B1, and/or IGETC Area 5A. You may also want to consider the many GE options offered in Astronomy (see below).
The other courses listed below can also satisfy some of your GE requirements, but you would usually take these courses only if your specific major requires them.
(Also known as “Algebra-Based Physics”, “Algebra/Trigonometry-Based Physics”, and “College Physics”)
If you are a life science major, or majoring in a pre-health field, you will normally be required to take one or both semesters of the general physics sequence (PHYS 350-360); this varies depending on your transfer institution and/or health profession graduate program. Both courses have lecture and lab components which you must take concurrently.
To enter the PHYS 350-360 sequence, you are not required to have any previous physics coursework, but you need to have completed the prerequisite of MATH 373 or the equivalent so that you are proficient with algebra and trigonometry. As additional optional preparation for PHYS 350, you may wish to take PHYS 310 or PHYS 311 prior to starting this sequence. We recommend that you discuss this with the PHYS 350 course instructor and/or Physics department chair to see if/what extra preparation is most appropriate for you.
(Also known as “Physics for Scientists and Engineers”, “Majors physics”, and “University physics”)
If you major in physics, engineering, computer science, or a physical science such as chemistry or geophysics, you will be normally be required to take one, two, or three semesters of the calculus-based physics sequence (PHYS 410-421-431); this varies depending on your transfer institution. All three of these courses have lecture and lab components which you must take concurrently.
To enter the PHYS 410-421-431 sequence, you are not required to have any previous physics coursework, but you will need calculus (Math 400 and/or 401) pre- and/or co-requisites for these courses; consult the course catalog for details. If you feel that you need additional optional preparation, you may wish to take PHYS 310, PHYS 311, or PHYS 350, depending on your comfort level. We recommend that you discuss this with the PHYS 350 course instructor and/or Physics department chair to see if/what extra preparation is most appropriate for you.
Dean: Dr. Rina Roy
Admin. Asst.: Saira Bettencourt
Department Chair: Shih-Wen Young
Phone: (916) 484-4570
Fax: (916) 484-8550
Monday - Thursday:
7:30A - 7:00P
7:30A - 5:00P
North Side of Campus Science Area
As I glance back and reminisce on my days at American River College, I realized that MESA has become a part of my identity. The sense of family and support that I was greeted with every day when I would walk in was amazing.
There was always someone to answer academic questions as well as offer advice about school and life in general. During my time at MESA, I was given the opportunity to become a tutor and program assistant. These positions helped me improve my time management, interpersonal, and communication skills.
Furthermore, as a member of the MESA family, I was able to attend a leadership conference in Santa Cruz during which I networked with many students who also were interested in pursuing higher education in the health fields.
In the Fall of 2013, I transferred to UC Davis where I studied biological sciences and English. Within my first year, I joined the Global Medical Brigades and became a volunteer, monitor, and board-member at Shifa Community Clinic, which is a student-run health clinic that provides free healthcare for uninsured patients. As I found my passion in the field of dentistry, I began the creation of a free dental clinic for uninsured patients in collaboration with Shifa Clinic.
My experiences with the MESA program at American River College helped me pave the road to where I am today and where I hope to be in the future. Through MESA, I began to develop a sense of humbleness, love for the community, and service to the underserved. The intellectual discussions with MESA director Dr. Will, MESA family members, and the many other resources guided me towards a life I always dreamed of.