APS Bridge Program

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the deadline for applying?

The deadline for completed applications is each year at the end of March. This includes your application, transcripts, and letters of recommendation. Please allow some time to make sure your letter writers are able to get their letters uploaded before the deadline as there is no grace period once the deadline has passed.

Am I eligible for the Bridge Program?

You are eligible for the Bridge Program if you meet the following requirements:

  • Have a bachelor's degree in physics or closely related discipline such as biophysics, applied physics, engineering physics, astrophysics, etc. Non-physics majors must have completed core physics requirements to be considered.
  • Be a US citizen or permanent resident (or be a part of the DACA program)
  • Did not apply to a physics graduate program that received a letter of acceptance

When will I hear back about my application?

When your application is complete, you will receive a confirmation email regarding your application status. Students accepted into bridge programs will receive admission offers in May and June, through direct email contact with site leaders.

Although most offers go out in May and June, some institutions may make offers for fall enrollment later in the summer. As such, you should be sure to 1) Make sure that the email listed on your Bridge application is one that you will use after graduation and that you check often, and 2) keep an eye out for contact from institutions throughout the summer.

If I have a Masters degree am I still eligible?

Yes. Eligibility for the APS Bridge Program states that students should have a degree, either bachelor's or master's in physics or a closely related discipline (e.g., astronomy, engineering physics, applied physics, etc.). Note that students who have already attained a master's degree in physics must meet all other eligibility requirements. This includes not receiving an offer of admission into a doctoral program.

Are women included as underrepresented minorities?

No. Although women are underrepresented in physics and many other STEM fields, the specific focus of the APS Bridge Program is to increase the number of PhDs awarded to Black, Latinx, and Indigenous students regardless of gender. Students who fall under these racial and ethnic minority groups are encouraged to apply to the Bridge Program.

Do I need to have an undergraduate physics degree in order to apply? Can I apply if my major isn't physics?

No. Students with degrees closely related to physics may apply to the program, but they must have completed many of the advanced undergraduate core physics requirements or their applications will not be considered. These include courses in quantum mechanics, electromagnetism, classical mechanics, and thermodynamics or statistical mechanics.

Do students receive stipends if accepted into a program and if so, in what amount?

No. The APS Bridge Program does not presently offer funding to successful applicants nor to participating institutions. However, these institutions typically offer financial support, comparable or identical to stipends received by other graduate students. Once students receive graduate program offers, students should consider whether the offered financial support is sufficient for their needs.


For general inquiries, contact us at bridgeprogram@aps.org.

Meet the APS Bridge Team

NSFThis material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1834540. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.