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Programs / Engineering / Engineering Physics

Program Summary

Engineering Physics is a challenging and elite program for those students who want to combine the strengths of physics and engineering. You will obtain an unusually broad and strong foundation in material science, applied physics, electronics and nanotechnology, and learn to apply it in the development of new technologies which include, but are not limited to, nanotechnology, semiconductor devices, optical systems, telecommunications and related computer hardware. In your senior year, you may specialize in many other areas of interest.

At Carleton University, the Bachelor of Engineering (BEng) degree program in Engineering Physics has two main areas of focus, integrated semiconductor devices as well as optical devices and systems. This program offers:

  • A set of options in fourth year that allow you to focus on either semiconductor devices and technology, or modern optics;
  • The opportunity for you to design your own integrated circuits (ICs), which are manufactured right on campus;
  • A unique team design project course in first year;
  • Excellent computing resources;
  • An active student branch of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers; and
  • Excellent scholarships for high-standing students.

Carleton’s location in Canada’s high technology centre enables you to develop contacts that could lead to opportunities during work terms and after graduation.

Our laboratory and research facilities

At Carleton, you will benefit from outstanding computer networks and modern, well-equipped laboratories—Carleton is actually one of the few universities in the country with its own in-house IC fabrication facilities. You will also benefit from our proximity to, and close association with, the laboratories of the National Research Council Canada (NRC) and the Communications Research Centre.

Co-op opportunities

As a student in the Engineering Physics program you will have the opportunity to apply to the Co-operative Education Program. Co-op integrates degree-related, paid work terms into your degree program. A minimum of four work terms are required to obtain the Co-op designation on your degree. Our program is closely associated with some of Canada’s leading technology companies, many of which are located in the Ottawa region. You may also have the chance to work in state-of-the-art government labs, such as those at the NRC, giving students valuable work experience and contacts that will benefit them in the future.

Ottawa is a global technology leader. Sharing a city with some of the world’s best tech companies and government laboratories offers excellent opportunities for co-op and internship placements, as well as a high number of prospects for future employment. Nearly 79,000 people in the national capital are employed by more than 1,800 tech companies, including multinational giants who lead the way in telecommunications, software, computer systems, aerospace, sensor technologies, the environment, security and defence, construction, semiconductors, and wireless technologies.

The BEng degree program in Engineering Physics is fully accredited by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board. When you graduate from this program, you will meet the educational requirements for registration as a professional engineer.

Your program begins with a broad and fundamental background in physics and electronics. During the first year, you will have a unique opportunity to participate in a small class and collaborate closely with a senior professor on a team project that involves the design and implementation of an optical system. This course introduces you to engineering design early in your studies, making your subsequent years more relevant and interesting.

The second and third years of the program provide you with a strong background in both physics and engineering, with courses in programming, electronics and modern physics. Fourth year allows you to specialize in either semiconductor device technology or applied optics. Electives are also available in IC design, telecommunications electronics, computer-aided design, microwave engineering, integrated sensors and many other areas.

As an engineering physicist, you will be well equipped for work in the biomedical, renewable energy and telecommunications high-technology sectors, including IC fabrication, microelectronic devices, nanotechnology, microwave and optical systems, and sensor technology. Some engineering physicists also develop careers in biomedical engineering and medical physics. This degree also provides an ideal background for graduate studies in either electrical engineering or physics.

What students are saying about Engineering Physics

Engineering Physics offers the best of both worlds: my physics courses gives me a solid foundation in first-principles thinking, and my engineering courses give me a design-based approach to problem-solving. In my second year, I can start to see the possibilities that this opens up, from graduate studies in biophotonics to working in industry on semiconductor devices. I like that the program is small because it makes it easier to bond with other students and get help with assignments, but we're also part of the Carleton Students Engineering Society, so we still get to hang out with other Engineering students, too.
Sophie Beraud, Engineering Physics student

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