Mathematical Physics

Degree: Honours Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Mathematical Physics
Physics and Astronomy
Systems of study available: regular or co-op

mathematical physics students

The study of physics from a deeper mathematical perspective.


Apply your love of mathematics to the understanding of how the natural world works. By taking more advanced courses in mathematics, you will be better equipped to understand the theoretical foundations of physics. You might contribute to discovering a new, more deeply unifi ed theory of physics, or work out mathematically complex solutions to some of the great theoretical and/or technological challenges of our time. Mathematical Physics will give you advanced mathematical problem solving skills to prepare you for a wide range of careers or graduate studies. Study in one of Canada’s largest and most highly respected physics programs, through experiential learning opportunities in co-op programs and upper-year research projects. With ties to Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics and the Institute for Quantum Computing, take your education further than you thought possible.

First-year courses

In Waterloo Science you're not required to take a general first year. From day-one you'll begin taking courses in physics and math. Access a large number and variety of state-of-the-art labs. Informal seminars and research lab tours keep you current with the latest research being conducted by your professors.

fall term winter term
One of CHEM 120, 100-level BIOL, or EARTH 121 (and associated labs)

PHYS 121/131L Mechanics/Lab

PHYS 10 Physics Seminar 

MATH 136 Linear Algebra 1 for Honours Mathematics

MATH 137 Calculus 1 for Honours Mathematics 

One elective 

One of CHEM 123, 100-level BIOL, or EARTH 122 (and associated labs)

PHYS 122/132L Waves, Electricity and Magnetism/Lab

PHYS 10 Physics Seminar 

MATH 138 Calculus 2 for Honours Mathematics 

PHYS 124 Modern Physics 

One elective

Upper-year courses

See the full list of upper year courses in the academic calendar.

Co-operative education (co-op) available: Yes

Mathematical Physics co-op students at work

  • Engineering Aide — Traffi c Data Centre & Safety, City of Toronto
  • Application Developer, Waterloo Maple Inc.
  • CODE HA — Science/Engineering, Xerox Research Centre of Canada
  • Ice Model Research Assistant — Data Assimilation, Environment Canada
  • Analyst and Software Developer, Atomic Energy of Canada Limited

Learn more about co-op and how much you can earn on co-op work terms.

Career fields

Because Mathematical Physics emphasizes research and computer skills, employers find that our students are valuable team members who quickly learn new techniques and who are able to problem solve.

What our grads are doing now

  • Graduate school
  • Research
  • Industry (analysis and modeling)
  • Teaching
  • Software development

See more in the science careers list.

Admission information for future students

  • Apply via Physical Sciences on the Ontario Universities' Application Centre (OUAC).
  • Visit Waterloo’s main future student website for details on admissions, financing, housing, and more.

Meet Our Ambassadors

Find out more about life as a Waterloo Mathematical Physics student. Come in for a tour or to one of our open houses and you might even meet them in person!