Because of multiple technological breakthroughs over the last decade that allow the gathering of large amounts of new kinds of data, biology has become a particularly exciting frontier of science, not only at a fundamental level but because of new opportunities to apply basic insights to medicine and health care. It turns out that physics has played an important role in developing many of the new technologies that have helped biology to advance, and it further turns out that many of the conceptual, experimental, and theoretical skills of physicists have turned out to be valuable for understanding biological problems.
Biophysics is an interdisciplinary subject that involves the frontiers of physics and biology (and also frontiers of chemistry, mathematics, computer science, and engineering). Biophysicists differ from biologists mainly in wanting to understand biology quantitatively: by carefully measuring experimental features of living systems (or tissues or molecules obtained from living systems), by developing technologies that allow novel problems to be studied, by formulating hypotheses in a concise mathematical form that can be falsified or supported by the quantitative details of the experiments, and by developing theories that can explain, clarify, and unify diverse biological data.
Recommended Other Courses
Biophysics majors seeking the Bachelor of Science degree are strongly recommended to take:
- a research-independent study related to biophysics, with the topic approved by the Biophysics.
- an introductory course on computer programming such as Computer Science or Engineering as soon as possible. Programming is essential for nearly all biophysics-related research, for analyzing data and for controlling and carrying out experiments.
- an introductory statistics course that will give them the background to understand how complex biological and medical data are summarized statistically, and to carry out statistical analysis themselves. Some possible courses are Probability and Statistics in Engineering and Introductory Biostatistics.
In collaboration with the Departments of Biology and Chemistry, the Physics Department offers a Bachelor in Biophysics program for Duke University students:
- who want to be prepared for 21st-Century biological research, medical research, and clinical medicine, which increasingly requires quantitative physics-like approaches.
- who like using the quantitative methods of physics and mathematics to think about biology.
- who want an interdisciplinary training in biology, chemistry, mathematics, and physics.
- who want to invent devices that can measure new properties of biological or medical systems.
- who want to study topics related to biomedical engineering but with the flexibility to take the broader range of courses offered by a liberal arts education (Trinity versus Pratt).
Get more detailsVisit official programme website
- Optics and Modern Physics
- Survey of Nonlinear and Complex Systems
- Frontiers of 21st Century Physics
- Physics and the Universe
- The Physics of Sports
- Acoustics and Music
- Energy in the 21st Century and Beyond
- Physics Research and the Economy
- General Physics
- Applications of Physics: A modern perspective
- Fundamentals of Physics
- 48 months
Start dates & application deadlines
- Apply before
DisciplinesPhysics Biology Biochemistry View 2540 other Masters in Biology in United States
We are not aware of any academic requirements for this programme.
- Official transcripts for all academic work completed in high school are required and must be submitted by your school counselor or another school official
- All applicants must complete either the ACT or SAT
- If you are a non-native English speaker or if you are not currently studying in an English-medium curriculum, we recommend but do not require that you take an English proficiency test (DUOLINGO, IELTS, PTE, TOEFL)
- A one-page personal essay as well as short essay questions specific to Duke
- We require three letters of recommendation for each applicant: one from your school counselor and two from teachers who have taught you in major academic courses (English, mathematics, social studies, sciences, foreign languages)
- A nonrefundable $85 application fee
- To obtain an F-1 visa for study in the United States, a foreign citizen must furnish his or her home country’s U.S. consulate with proof of ability to meet educational expenses, along with the I-20 form.
International57934 USD/yearTuition FeeBased on the tuition of 57934 USD per year during 48 months.
National57934 USD/yearTuition FeeBased on the tuition of 57934 USD per year during 48 months.
Living costs for Durham
The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.
Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.
Apply and win up to €10000 to cover your tuition fees.
Updated in the last 9 months
Check the official programme website for potential updates.