Prerequisites: The program admits students with the expectation that following graduation they will sit for the American Board of Radiology certification exams in Medical Physics . To that end, students must meet the following ABR minimum undergraduate course requirements:
An undergraduate degree in a physical science with the following:
- Physics: at least 2 years of calculus-based Physics (not algebra-based):
- Intro to Physics (level 1), 3 quarters or 2 semesters, 10 semester-15 quarter credit hours.
- Intermediate Physics (level 2), 3 quarters or 2 semesters, 10 semester-15 quarter credit hours; and
- Mathematics: calculus through differential equations (level 4 or 5), 6 quarters or 4 semesters, 12 semester-18 quarter credit hours.
- The program is designed for students who have completed a major in undergraduate physics (bachelor's degree), or at least a minor in physics. Technical degrees such as radiation therapy, dosimetry or an associate’s degree in medical physics do not provide a suitable academic background for this program.
The faculty are seeking to fill the program with the strongest possible candidates, who have a commitment to service and an excellent background in physics (for physics majors, as distinct from physics for engineering or health physics, which are different courses), with advanced math courses to support the study of physics.
Yes, you may include information about your extracurricular activities and experiences that may be of interest to the committee. It would be your decision how to present that information. Listing them briefly on a resume would be fine; if you mention them in your personal statement, please explain what you learned from them, or why they were important in preparing you for your chosen future career.
Clinical medical physics is a service-oriented career, so service-oriented activities will be more relevant than purely recreational activities. And, like undergraduate applications, activities that demonstrate maturity, reliability, responsibility and leadership will favorably support your application.
You should also keep in mind that because UC is now one of a limited number of programs accredited by CAMPEP, the pool of applicants is growing larger and more competitive. Think about what will make you stand out to the committee.
While extracurricular activities are potentially valuable in shaping a person's character and values, the faculty must base their decision primarily on the following criteria:
- Academic preparation and excellence (physics and math courses that meet ABR standards);
- Comparing GPA and GRE scores within the applicant pool;
- Personal statement of purpose;
- Letters of recommendation (Note: these letters should be requested from three (3) physics professors, other faculty who have supervised your research, or medical physicists with whom you've worked or volunteered--professionals who can speak to your preparation and potential in the areas of academic performance, research and clinical skills).
Other considerations may include:
- Exposure to the field of medical physics, in one of several ways:
- Assisting in research (either collecting data or helping physics faculty to prepare a study or article);
- Learning about the profession by observing or assisting in the clinical setting with board-certified medical physicists;
- Original research and publishing, especially in material related to medical physics; but original research in any field of physics will be viewed favorably;
- Attending an academic meeting or conference and/or presenting a paper.