What Is Physics?

Physics is about understanding everything in the universe—the matter and the energy—and how it works.  Physicists have found that, using mathematical models, that there are certain laws that can predict what going to happen to matter and energy in certain situations.  So, they make observations about real situations, develop hypotheses, research, and then think through what could be happening, using math to come up with explanations and predictions.  They discover the truth of the universe.  Wow!  Where in your life are there things you can count on for sure every time?!  Well, you can do that in physics, if you know enough about the situation.

The field of Physics has lots of branches like Classical Physics which looks at forces acting on bodies or laws of motion—like how many friends you would need to push your car up a hill, things like that.  This includes solids (like the car example), liquids, and gases.  Pretty cool?!  There are also Thermodynamics, Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, Optics, Particles, and other branches.

So, this is scientific field, based mainly in mathematics, that requires a high-level of knowledge and really good thinking skills to be successful.  Are you good at math and would rather read and work complicated problems and puzzles than do most anything else?  Do you like being able to find out the “right” answers to things?  If so, you might be a future physicist.  Some titles, besides being a physics teacher in high school or college, include Physicist, Nuclear Engineer, Accelerator Operator, Diagnostic Medical Physicist, Seismologist, Mettalurgist, Physics Engineer, and Radiation Protection Practitioner.

What Degrees Relate to Careers in Physics?