The Department of Physics at National Central University offers both undergraduate and graduate training. The undergraduate program was established in 1968 after the National Central University relocated in Chung-li; subsequently, masters and Ph.D. programs of Physics & Astronomy were set up in 1977 and 1981. In 1992, the masters program of Physics & Astronomy was renamed The Masters Program of Physics; in 2001, the Ph.D. program of Physics & Astronomy was also renamed The Ph.D. program of Physics.
The faculty of the Department of Physics currently (2002 academic year) employs twenty-one full-time professors, two associate professors, six assistant professors and two lecturers; in addition, there are three joint appointment faculty above the associate professors' position with The Institute of Astronomy at NCU. All faculty members above the position of assistant professor received their Ph.D. degree from noteworthy domestic or foreign universities; their performance whether teaching or research is recognized as outstanding and enthusiastic. Consequently, their research achievements are notable. Taking the year 2002 as an example, there are 62 publications in the SCI published by the faculty members. Prof. Lin I and Prof. G.C.Chi were awarded the Classic Citation Award by the ISI (Institute for Scientific Information), and Prof. Hoong-Chien Lee and Prof. Pik-Yin Lai received the Outstanding Research Awards from the NSC (National Science Council). These awards and honors not only represent personal effort but also the international standard of the faculty and research of our department.
Our research programs offer a wide range of options for specialization, including Complex systems (Colloid / Polymer / Soft-condensed matter and biological materials / Biophysics / Bioinformatics / Complex fluid and plamsa/ Liquid-crystals / Neural networks / Phonon and photon lattices), Material physics (Semiconductors /Magnetic thin-films / Superconductivity /Nano particles), High energy physics, Atomic and molecular physics, Astrophysics, Gravity theory , etc. It deserves to mention that the Complex systems, High energy physics, Gravity theory and Biophysics research programs are leaders in their fields among the universities in Taiwan. In addition, the rate of participation in NSC research programs and awarding is high. In this (2002) academic year, the number participating in NSC research programs was 35, the total funds awarded were 64,340,000; the number of distributive education research programs was 3, the total funds were 1,850,000. At the same time, with the aid of the NSC, there were many visiting scholars, research fellows and post-doctoral fellows who participated in teaching and research in the department.
The educational purpose of the department of Physics is to develop the spirit of science exploration, to teach the basic principles of physics and develop the experimental ability of the students. Beyond this, our physics majors pursue a program that well prepares them for advanced education and other careers. Thus some of our alumni are engaged in research and the teaching of basic science, some of them have received the Outstanding Research Award from the NSC. Over 90% of the alumni work in high-tech industries, such as semiconductors and optical science, as well as superior R&D, the integration of production and marketing and management, etc. Most of them work as senior chiefs, vice general managers or higher positions and have accomplished notable achievements and earned a good reputation in both academia and the technical industries.
The department building faces the Xuan-Ou lake with a pleasant view. Both the software and hardware facilities are first-rate, including computers and networks, professional publications, experimental instruments and student study rooms. Also we have educational laboratories for general physics, experimental physics, modern physics, optics, electronics and advanced experimental techniques. Our facilities are well-equipped and renewed yearly to maintain their quality. We also continually strive to improve the educational and work environment for both students and faculty members.