The minor in biophysics enables students with primary interests in biology, chemistry, health sciences, mathematics, anthropology, psychology, or other disciplines to explore the deep connections between fundamental physical processes and the functions and development of life. Using mathematical and computational models as well as precise experimental measurements and advanced instrumentation, biophysics explores living processes within a framework that builds upon fundamental physics concepts of mechanics, electrodynamics, statistical physics, and quantum physics. Students taking a minor in biophysics will be able to synthesize some or all of these areas of physics at a mature level of understanding into their primary field(s) of study, bringing an enriched array of intellectual and experimental tools to the pursuit of their professional goals.

Program Requirements


  1. Students must complete a minimum of  16  PHYS credit hours.
  2. Students must complete a minimum of 6 upper-division (3000-level and above) PHYS credit hours.
  3. Students must achieve a minimum GPA of 2.0 for all courses applied to minor requirements.
  4. Students must complete all minor courses taken at CU Denver and all transfer courses applying to minor requirements with a minimum grade of C-(1.7).  Students cannot complete minor course requirements as pass/fail.
  5. Students must complete a minimum of 12 PHYS credit hours with CU Denver faculty.

Program Restrictions, Allowances and Recommendations


  1. Requirements for the minor in biophysics may be used to fulfill the requirements of the major in physics.
  2. A student majoring in physics who wants to minor in biophysics needs to take a minimum of 15 credit hours in astrophysics that do not overlap with the major, excluding college physics, general physics or the associated labs.
  3. Students must complete a minimum of 12 PHYS credit hours taken with CU Denver faculty with a minimum grade of C.

**Note: the courses containing “NM” are versions whose math and use of prior physics knowledge has been adjusted - in terms of grading and assignments - for students who have taken fewer math and physics courses than physics majors (NM stands for non-majors). Both versions are meant to be content rich and conceptually challenging, still require quantitative modeling, and are offered simultaneous by the same instructor. Students with strong math backgrounds are encouraged to take the “majors” (xx51) version. Either one or the other version can count toward the minor, but not both.

  • Take all of the courses in one of the following four course Physics lecture/lab sequences:

  • PHYS 2010 - College Physics I
  • PHYS 2030 - College Physics Lab I
  • PHYS 2020 - College Physics II
  • PHYS 2040 - College Physics Lab II
  • or

  • PHYS 2311 - General Physics I: Calculus-Based
  • PHYS 2321 - General Physics Lab I
  • PHYS 2331 - General Physics II: Calculus-Based
  • PHYS 2341 - General Physics Lab II
  •  

    Take both of the following upper division biophysics courses:

  • PHYS 3151 - Biophysics Outlook I
  • PHYS 3161 - Biophysics Outlook II
  • Take at least one of the following:

  • PHYS 3251 - Biophysics of the Body or
  • PHYS 3252 - Biophysics of the Body NM
  • PHYS 3451 - Biophysics of the Cell or
  • PHYS 3452 - Biophysics of the Cell NM
  • PHYS 4351 - Bioelectromagnetism or
  • PHYS 4352 - Bioelectromagnetism NM
  • PHYS 4840 - Independent Study: PHYS
  • Additional biophysics-related special topics or elective courses may be approved by the department advisor. Such courses include topics such as Radiation Physics in Biomedicine, Computational Modeling in Biophysics, Nonlinear Dynamics in Biomedicine, and specialized courses in biophysics-related instrumentation.

Students must consult with the physics advisor, meet physics faculty engaged in biophysics research, attend departmental biophysics-related seminars, and explore ways that biophysics relates to research undertaken by faculty in other disciplines – including both fundamental science and clinical medicine. Opportunities also arise to connect biophysics studies to outreach into regional high schools so that pre-college students can benefit from undergraduates sharing their experiences with connecting studies across disciplines.

For more information, contact:

Masoud Asadi-Zeydabadi (Biophysics advisor) or Michael "Bodhi" Rogers (Physics advsior)