Physical Sciences

Astronomy ▪ Biochemistry ▪ Chemistry ▪ Environmental Science ▪ Geology ▪ Marine Science ▪ Physics

The Physical Sciences Department is a combination of programs dedicated to describing and explaining the natural phenomena of the earth, atmosphere, and space.


Specialize in astronomy, astrophysics, or planetary science. Gain hands-on experience with our research-grade telescope and digital planetarium.

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Dr. Reed and a group of students smiling together in the background, behind a white microscope in the foreground.

Biochemistry is the study of life processes at the molecular level, and prepares you for careers in research, agriculture, food production and technology, biotechnology, medical school, teaching, and the pharmaceutical industry.

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Two students conducting an experiment with electronics in the lab.

American Chemical Society-approved. Study the properties, structures, and changes of matter. Chemistry's practical applications include medicine, plastics, the planet's atmosphere, and alternative forms of energy production.

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Smiling student places a slide into the viewing plate of a microscope
Environmental Science

The Environmental Science Program prepares students to assist society in understanding and addressing complex environmental challenges.

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A group of students doing field studies in a forest.

A geology degree will give you an excellent foundation to work on environmental projects, help communities survive earthquakes and floods, or find sustainable ways for future generations to benefit from natural resources.

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Geology student in hard hat in the field, closely examining a mineral.
marine science

Marine scientists apply biology, geology, chemistry, and physics to see how the living creatures are affected by the chemistry of their environment and the physics of ocean circulation.

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Students on a boat throwing a large fishing net over the side.

In KU’s on-campus observatory, planetarium and physics laboratories you’ll apply theoretical knowledge from your classes to create your own projects, using sophisticated technology to study motion, astronomy and engineering.

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Three students wearing goggles and gloves conducting an experiment with a dry ice bath.