M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives

UNIVERSITY ARCHIVES

Finding Aid for the
DEPARTMENT OF PHYSICS
RECORDS, 1915-1971
(UA-628)

Finding aid includes an administrative history only.

For reference queries contact Grenander Department Reference staff or (518)-437-3935.

Administrative History Compiled by
Orson Kingsley, History 599 Intern
October 2004







M. E. Grenander Department of Special Collections & Archives 
University Libraries / University at Albany / State University of New York 
1400 Washington Avenue / Albany, New York 12222 / (518) 437-3935


VOLUME: 2 cubic ft.

ACQUISITION: These records were deposited in the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections & Archives, University Libraries, University at Albany.

ACCESS: Access to these records is unrestricted.

COPYRIGHT: The researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming with the laws of copyright. Whenever possible, the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives will provide information about copyright owners and other restrictions, but the legal determination ultimately rests with the researcher. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be discussed with the Head of Special Collections and Archives.


TABLE OF CONTENTS

Administrative History

Scope and Content Note


Department of Physics
Administrative History

Back to Table of Contents

Today’s Department of Physics at the State University of New York at Albany has a long history, the first courses being taught in Natural Philosophy in 1845. The establishment of the school as a four year liberal arts college in 1905 lead to an expansion of offerings in Physics, now including a General Course in Physics, Heat, Light, and Sound, and Electricity and Magnetism, but still taught by a Professor of Natural Science, Professor Wetmore, and located in the Department of Physical Sciences. The first Professor of Physics, Dr. Clarence Frederick Hale, was appointed in May 1911. In 1913 a separate Department of Physics was formed. A Minor in Physics was made available in 1916.

Graduate education was introduced in 1913. In 1962 the Master’s Program in Physics was opened for the first time to all students. A Ph.D. was first offered in the fall of 1965. David Peak received the first Ph.D. degree in 1970 with his dissertation titled “Foundation of Gauge Theory.” The honors program for Physics was first listed in the 1981-82 Undergraduate Bulletin. The combined B.S./M.S. program was first listed in the 1983-84 Undergraduate Bulletin. In 1988 the 3-2 program for engineering was introduced, allowing students to spend their first three years at the University at Albany, and spend the next two years at either RPI, Clarkson University, SUNY New Paltz, or Binghamton University. Students who complete this program are awarded B.S. degrees in Physics from Albany and Engineering from the engineering school of their choice.

Today the Department of Physics offers a variety of programs. Undergraduates can obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in physics or teacher education, while graduate students can receive a Master of Science degree in physics or teacher education. Prospective undergraduate students with plans of continuing their education can take the B.S./M.S. combination program. An honors program and a 3-2 program in which students can split their education between SUNY Albany and one of four other schools known for engineering are also available. A Doctor of Philosophy degree can be obtained as well. Undergraduate students are prepared either to undertake graduate study in physics, to apply physics principles and techniques successfully for advanced work in other disciplines, to enter industry usefully, or to teach in the secondary schools. Along with courses in classical mechanics, electromagnetic theory, atomic and nuclear physics, and thermal physics, students learn modern experimental techniques, principles of quantum mechanics, and applications. UAlbany physics grad students have the opportunity to do creative research in areas ranging from the forefront of particle physics to unexpected applications of condensed matter science.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Notes

Back to Administrative History

1. State University of New York at Albany, Undergraduate Bulletin 1966-1967, p. 115.
2. State University of New York at Albany, Undergraduate Bulletin 2002-2003, p. 81.
3. An Historical Sketch of the State Normal College at Albany, N.Y. and a History of its Graduates for Fifty Years: 1844-1894, Albany, NY: Brandow Printing Company, p.4.
4. State Normal School Albany: Executive Committee Minutes: 1844-1868, Albany, NY, 1941, Vol. 1, p. 19.
5. State Normal School Albany: Executive Committee Minutes: 1844-1868, Albany, NY, 1941, Vol. 1, p. 24.
6. State Normal School Albany: Executive Committee Minutes: 1844-1868, Albany, NY, 1941, Vol. 1, p. 31.
7. Annual Report of the Executive Committee of the State Normal School: 1844-1852, January 27, 1846, No. 32, p. 5.
8. Annual Report of the Executive Committee of the State Normal School: 1844-1852, January 27, 1846, No. 32, p. 29.
9. An Historical Sketch of the State Normal College at Albany, N.Y. and a History of its Graduates for Fifty Years: 1844-1894, Albany, NY: Brandow Printing Company, p.5-6.
10. An Historical Sketch of the State Normal College at Albany, N.Y. and a History of its Graduates for Fifty Years: 1844-1894, Albany, NY: Brandow Printing Company, p. 5-9.
11. Annual Report of the Executive Committee of the State Normal School: 1860-1868, January 24, 1868, No. 63, p. 28.
12. State Normal School Albany: Executive Committee Minutes: 1869-1909, Albany, NY, 1941, Vol. 2, p. 543.
13. New York State Normal College, Annual Circular and Announcement, 1890, p. 8.
14. New York State Normal College, Annual Circular and Announcement, 1891, p. 8.
15. New York State Normal College, Annual Circular and Announcement, 1898, p. 6.
16. New York State Normal College, Annual Circular and Announcement, 1904, p.36-38.
17. New York State College for Teachers, Annual Circular and Announcement, 1914-1915, p. 46.
18. NYSCT Commencement Exercise, Master’s Theses A Bibliography 1914-1978, p. 4.
19. New York State College for Teachers, Official Catalogue, 1944, p. 69.
20. “Self Examination,” October 1, 1964, p. 1.
21. State University of New York College at Albany, General Catalogue, 1962-1963, p. 30.
22. Alumni Quarterly, Spring 1965, p. 7.
23. State University of New York at Albany, Doctoral Dissertations A Bibliography, 1963-1978, p. 37.
24. State University of New York at Albany, Undergraduate Bulletin 1983-1984, p. 97.
25. State University of New York at Albany, Undergraduate Bulletin 1990-1991, p. 102.
26. State University of New York at Albany, Undergraduate Bulletin 1992-1993, p. 105.
27. State University of New York at Albany, Undergraduate Bulletin 1997-1998, p. 72.
28. State University of New York at Albany, Graduate Study, Department of Biological Sciences 1998, p. 2.
29. Conversation between Michael DeRensis, Office of Graduate Admissions, and Geoffrey Williams, University Archivist, October 14, 2004.


Department of Physics
Scope and Content Note

Back to Table of Contents

The collection includes inventories, 1915-65; publications; and reports.

Photographs of faculty and students from the Department of Physics from the University Archives Photograph Collection are available for viewing online from the University at Albany Libraries' Digital Collections database.


Reference E-mail | Find Collections | Find Other Historical Resources
About the Department | Department Services and Policies
View Exhibits | View Blog
Department Home Page

Last updated August 21, 2007