Skip to main content

Brigham Young University. Department of Physics and Astronomy

 Organization

Dates

  • Existence: 1972-

Administrative History

The Department of Physics and Astronomy (1972-) provides curriculum in physics and astronomy to prepare students for careers in those fields.

The Department of Physics and Astronomy, previously called the Department of Physics, was created in 1972 and placed in the College of Physical and Engineering Sciences. In 1973 the department was moved to the newly formed College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences. The curriculum of the Department of Physics and Astronomy is designed to provide 1) training for students who intend to pursue graduate work in physics or astronomy; 2) preparation for students who intend to enter industrial or governmental service as physicists or astronomers; 3) a fundamental background for other physical sciences and engineering; 4) the broadening program required by the biological science, premedical, predental, and nursing programs; 5) training in the subject matter of physics for prospective teachers of the physical sciences; and 6) a perspective of science and an introduction to the role of physics in the human quest for understanding.

The Department Chairmen have included John H. Gardner (1972-1973), B. Kent Harrison (1973-1980), Howard B. Vanfleet (1980-1989), Daniel L. Decker (1989-1995), Dorian M. Hatch (1995-2001), R. Steven Turley (2001-2004), Scott D. Sommerfeldt (2004-2008), and Ross Spencer (2008- ).

Citation:
BYU Organizational History Project, website viewed Oct. 31, 2012: Dept. of Physics and Astronomy (1972-, Dept. of Physics, College of Physical and Engineering Sciences, 1973, College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, training for graduate work, industrial or governmental service, physicists, astronomers, background for physical sciences, engineering, broadening program, biological science, premedical, predental, nursing, training prospective teachers, role of physics, human quest, John H. Gardner (1972-1973), B. Kent Harrison (1973-1980), Howard B. Vanfleet (1980-1989), Daniel L. Decker (1989-1995), Dorian M. Hatch (1995-2001), R. Steven Turley (2001-2004), Scott D. Sommerfeldt (2004-2008), and Ross Spencer (2008- ))

Found in 15 Collections and/or Records:

Alumni Association campus newsletter samples

 File — Folder: 1
Identifier: UA 852
Scope and Contents Contains outlines concerning department and college responses relating to possible department newsletters and reunions. Includes newsletters from the following Brigham Young University organizations: Department of Animal Science, "Roundup," 1989-1991; Department of Microbiology, "The Micro-Scope," 1990, and "Department of Microbiology Newsletter," Department of Food Science and Nutrition, "FS & N News," 1991; College of Family, Home, and Social Sciences newsletter, "Interact," 1989;...
Dates: 1981-1991

Department of Physics and Astronomy planetarium records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA 5642
Scope and Contents

Contains various materials concerning the Brigham Young University planetarium. Includes information about shows, programs, and various astronomy subjects. Also contains materials from other planetariums. Dates range from 1967 to 1999.

Dates: 1967-1999

Department of Physics and Astronomy printed materials, 1959-1975

 Series
Identifier: UA 659 Series 5
Scope and Contents note

Department meeting minutes, classroom instructional material, forms and form letters, newsletters, and department reports.

Dates: Other: 1959-1975

Department of Physics and Astronomy records, 1982-1993

 Series — Carton: 3, Folder: 4-5
Identifier: UA 5622 Series 2
Scope and Contents

Contains an examination for a physics course taught by H. B. Vanfleet in 1993, in addition to correspondence about a physics annual committee meeting that he attended in 1982.

Dates: 1982-1993

Department of Physics and Astronomy records

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA 5325
Scope and Contents

Contains correspondence and other files from the department, as well as research materials, class notes, and exams produced by Vanfleet. Materials date from between 1957 and 1995.

Dates: 1957-1995

Graduate Studies records on Department of Physics and Astronomy, 1992-1999

 Sub-Series — Carton: 15, Folder: 5-6
Identifier: UA 1141 Series 6 Sub-Series 43
Scope and Contents

Materials are related to the graduate program of the Department of Physics and Astronomy from 1992 to 1999. Materials include reports, department reviews, and proposals.

Dates: 1992-1999

H. B. Vanfleet research files, 1978-1995

 Series — Multiple Containers
Identifier: UA 5622 Series 1
Scope and Contents

Contains Vanfleet's research files on various topics within physics including diffusion, electricity, nuclear physics, and quantum mechanics. Files date from 1978 to 1995.

Dates: 1978-1995

Additional filters:

Type
Collection 7
Archival Record 4
Digital Record 4
 
Subject
Colleges and Universities 8
Education 8
Photographs 5
Physics -- Study and teaching -- Utah -- Provo 5
Research (Documents) 4