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Education

A unique strength of the plasma education available at UCLA is its breadth. All the major areas of contemporary interest related to plasma science and technology are represented in the programs of the faculty and research staff. Graduate students in the UCLA plasma programs are exposed to a wide range of research opportunities available in several departments and have access to world-class laboratories and computational facilities. In recent years graduates from the UCLA plasma programs have received numerous job offers in industry, national laboratories, and academia. Some have chosen to remain as professional researchers at UCLA.

Prospective graduate students should consult the individual web pages of the departments of interest to acquaint themselves with the entry requirements to UCLA. Each department handles admission to graduate status. However, students who are interested in pursuing a plasma-related dissertation are encouraged to contact PSTI early in the process to obtain an individual update of current research opportunities. It is often the case that some research groups can take on a student in the summer prior to the start of the first year. Students who take advantage of this opportunity often complete their degrees sooner. Also, the institute awards supplementary fellowships to outstanding candidates who are interested in plasma research. Individual departments and/or members of PSTI make nominations for these awards.

Although the graduate programs vary across the departments, the overall pattern consists of a first year concentration on core courses in the subject matter represented by the department. The second year is devoted to introductory courses related to plasmas and can involve instructors from various departments. Beyond the third year the students pursue individual research leading to their dissertation and attend advanced seminar courses. It is possible for students enrolled in a given department to have a thesis advisor from another department. The dissertation committees that approve the award of a Ph. D. are composed of at least three individuals from the home department and one from an outside department. The academic programs in the disciplines related to plasma science and technology at UCLA encompass 7 undergraduate and 28 graduate courses spread over 5 departments and involving 20 faculty members. It is common for graduate students to take plasma-related courses in several departments.

The courses presently available to students in the plasma disciplines at UCLA are listed below. One hundred numbers correspond to undergraduate courses and two hundred numbers to graduate courses. For a detailed description of each course the UCLA "General Catalog" should be consulted. 

Physics and Astronomy
122--Introduction to Plasma Physics (same as EE 185)
150--Physics of Charged-Particle and Laser Beams
160--Numerical Analysis Techniques and Particle Simulations
180E--Plasma Physics Laboratory
222A,B,C--Plasma Physics (the core graduate sequence)
250--Introduction to Acceleration of Charged Particles
260--Problems in Plasma Physics
269C--Accelerator Physics
280E--Advanced Plasma Laboratory
290--Research Tutorial in Plasma Physics
294--Research Tutorial in Accelerator Physics

Electrical Engineering
185--Plasma Electronics (same as Physics 122)
285A,B--Plasma Waves and Instabilities
287--Fusion Plasma Physics and Analysis (same as MAE 237B)

Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
137--Introduction to Fusion Engineering and Reactor Design
237B--Fusion Plasma Physics and Analysis (same as EE 287)
237--Fusion Reactor Technology and Design
239H--Special Topics in Fusion Physics, Engineering and Technology

Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences
154--Solar Terrestrial Physics
200C--Plasmas, Aeronomy and the Interplanetary Medium
240--Space Plasma Physics
261--Topics in Magnetospheric Plasma Physics
288A,B,C--Seminars in Space Physics

Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences
154--Introduction to Solar System Plasmas
205A--Introduction to Solar System Plasmas
205B--Descriptive Solar-Terrestrial Physics
250A--Solar System Magnetohydrodynamics
250B Solar System Microscopic Processes
256--Ionospheric Electrodynamics
257--Radiation Belt Plasma Physics
296G--Upper Atmosphere and Space Physics