Physics and Music Performance

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 11 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 31.2 k / Year(s) Deadline: Jan 15, 2024
11 place StudyQA ranking:3309 Duration:4 years You need IELTS certificate

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The Physics and Music Performance programme offers a unique opportunity to combine your education in physics with a passion for music performance, preparing you for a professional career in either field.

This programme is taught jointly by Imperial College London and the Royal College of Music. You will study all the core material of the standard three-year BSc Physics degree as well as some optional modules to ensure that you graduate as a fully qualified physicist.

In parallel, you will complete the main performance elements of the RCM's BMus degree on one principal instrument. Because of the demanding workload the programme is spread out over four years.

The degree courses that we offer share a common core. This ensures that all graduates have a good grounding in the fundamental aspects of physics, mathematics and experimental methods, irrespective of how you specialise in the later years.

You can specialise by following themes, such as theoretical physics, astrophysics, particle physics and cosmology, quantum optics and photonics, solid state physics, etc. A wide choice is available and there is considerable flexibility in how you make your choice, subject to the degree stream you have chosen.

In your application you only need to specify one course. We will discuss your choice with you and we take a flexible approach to course changes both at admissions stage and during the early years of the course.


Common core

  • Electricity and Magnetism
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanics
  • Measurement and Uncertainty
  • Professional Skills (first year seminars)
  • Physics Laboratory I
  • Physics Project
  • Quantum Physics
  • Relativity
  • Structure of Matter
  • Vibrations and Waves


  • Language course (F309)
  • Mathematical Analysis I (T) (F325, F390)
  • Electronics (F300, F303)


Common core

  • Electromagnetism
  • Mathematics
  • Nuclear and Particle Physics I
  • Optics
  • Physics Laboratory II
  • Professional Skills II
  • Quantum Mechanics
  • Solid State Physics I
  • Statistics of Measurement
  • Statistical Physics
  • Thermodynamics

Options (choose one)

  • Environmental Physics
  • Language Course (eight offered)
  • Mathematical Methods II (T)
  • Sun, Stars and Planets


Common core

  • Light and Matter
  • Comprehensive Physics (tutorial-based)
  • Physics of the Universe
  • Physics Laboratory III (except F325, F390)
  • Physics Project (F300, F325)
  • Professional Skills III
  • Fluid Dynamics

Options (typically choose four depending on programme)

  • Advanced Classical Physics
  • Astrophysics
  • Communicating Physics
  • Computational Physics (T)
  • Complexity and Networks (T)
  • Foundations of Quantum Mechanics (T)
  • Group Theory (T)
  • Lasers, Optics and Biophotonics
  • Medical Imaging
  • Principles of Instrumentation
  • Statistical Mechanics
  • Plasma Physics
  • Humanities or Business School options


Common core

  • Research Project (in a research group)
  • Research Interfaces

Options (choose five)

  • Advanced Particle Physics (T)
  • Atmospheric Physics
  • Biophysics of Nerve Cells and Networks
  • Cosmology
  • Device Physics
  • General Relativity (T)
  • Hydrodynamics and Shocks
  • Laser Technology
  • Optical Communication Physics
  • Plasmonics and Metamaterials
  • Quantum Field Theory (T)
  • Quantum Information (T)
  • Quantum Optics
  • Quantum Theory of Matter (T)
  • Space Physics
  • Unification (T)

Options marked (T) are particularly mathematical in character. A certain number of these must be taken in the degree programme Physics with Theoretical Physics.


For entry to Physics and Music Performance, you need to meet the requirements of both Imperial and the Royal College of Music. These are:

  • For the Physics component from Imperial the minimum offer is A*A*A to include:
    • A* in Mathematics, A*A including Physics and a third A-level
  • For the music component from RCM:
    • Grade 8 with Distinction in the ABRSM examination or equivalent (RCM take into account all examinations and grade)

Similar offers are generally made for the BSc and MSci degree programmes. MSci students are required to maintain good grades during their first two years.


For students following the International Baccalaureate, we require an overall score of 39 points overall, to include:

  • 7, 6 and 6 at higher level which must include Mathematics and Physics


Applicants of the following courses should also note the following requirements:Physics and Musical Performance.

President's Undergraduate Scholarships

Student Status Eligibility - Open pre-enrolment only

Value - £3,000 one off scholarship payment upon enrolment

Number Available - 112

Further Eligibility Criteria Information

All applicants are reviewed by their academic departments as part of the admission process and nominated on the basis of academic excellence and potential.

Duration - 1 year

Selection Process

There is no seperate application process for these awards. Selection will be determined by departments' usual admissions processes.

Academic departments are responsible for nominating scholarship recipients as part of the admission process. All first time undergraduate applicants who have applied to the College by 15 October will be considered for these awards. However, Graduate Entry Medicine students are not eligible.

There is no formal application process and no separate application form for the President's Undergraduate Scholarship.

Your prospective department will use your admission application, references and any entry tests or interviews associated with your department to assess your academic merit and potential.

Recipients of these awards might find reference to these scholarships as part of their admissions offer via UCAS Track. You will then receive separate communication from Imperial’s Student Financial Support team a few days later.

If we think you may be eligible to be considered for this award, you will receive an email with more information about the scholarship after you have applied.

If you do not wish to be considered for this scholarship, please contact us and let us know. Make sure you include the name of the scholarship and your College Identifier (CID) number – you can find this on your application acknowledgement email from the College.

Before applying

  1. You must quote your College Identifier (CID) number when corresponding with the College.
  2. The scholarships we offer are limited and highly competitive. You must have sufficient funding in place before enrolling on your course.
  3. Unless otherwise stated, the scholarships advertised are only available to prospective students applying for full-time courses.
  4. The award period will generally commence on the first day of the academic year which you have applied for (e.g. 1 October 2012).
  5. Scholarship applications will only be considered following an offer of admission. Only if you fulfil all the eligibility criteria (that is, if you meet the requirements) of the scholarship, will you be considered.
  6. If there is no separate scholarship application form to be submitted, we will use your admission application form and references provided. These documents may therefore also be passed to stakeholders involved in the selection process.
  7. Please do not send in supporting documents unless the scholarship application process specifically asks you to do so.
  8. Funding deadlines are strictly adhered to and any application received after the closing date will not be accepted.

Successful award recipients

9. Agreeing to these terms and conditions and supplying your UK bank details

a) All scholarship and bursary payments will be made to the UK bank account details held on your Student e-Service account. You are able to log into your Student e-Service account and make changes to your bank details at any time after you’ve accepted your admissions offer.
b) By submitting your bank details via the Student Funding tab in Imperial’s Student e-Service portal, and/or bursary form, you are confirming that you agree with the terms and conditions of the award.
c) It may take a few weeks to set up your bursary payments and your UK bank account (if applicable); therefore you should bring sufficient funds to cover your living expenses during this time. Initial payment dates may vary; it is your responsibility to ensure you are aware of when payments will be made.
d) The award is subject to you fulfilling any outstanding conditions of admission.
e) Funds will only be released in line with your registration at College and you will need to ensure your bank details are up to date.
f) Payment Dates: Payments are normally made on the 7th day of each month; bank details should be updated before the 24th day of the preceding month to ensure payment is not delayed. Undergraduate payments will commence from 7th November. Postgraduate payments will commence on the 7th of the month following your registration.

10. Please make sure that you have completed all the steps necessary to register for the academic year in which you wish to receive payment. Please note that new award holders will also need to have fulfilled all of their conditions of offer before they are able to register.

11. All Imperial scholarships are subject to satisfactory academic progression. If the duration of your scholarship is longer than 12 months, it will be renewable annually.

12. Awards will not generally be made to those already holding a full scholarship from another source; please inform Student Financial Support, and/or any other department which has offered you an award, immediately if you are granted more than one award, even if you have already accepted our award. If you wish to hold several partial awards concurrently, this will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

13. Scholarships are not generally awarded to students who are writing-up.

14. Applicants wishing to study at UK partner institutions are not eligible for Imperial College London scholarships.

15. Undergraduate Financial Support / Imperial Bursary Package

a) To be eligible to receive an Imperial Bursary you must have been assessed for means tested funding from Student Finance England (or equivalent funding authority) and have a household income below the Imperial household income threshold for your cohort. You must contact us if this is not the case. Any previous study may affect your entitlement.
b) The College reviews household income information (which it receives from Student Finance England, etc.) on a continuous basis. A change in your household income may result in a change in your Imperial Bursary. Any overpayments will be reclaimed.
c) The Imperial Bursary is available for each year of your course excluding repeat years of study and NHS funded years for Medical courses. If you change from a 3 year to a 4 year course at Imperial you will be awarded a further year’s bursary. You should contact us about any course changes as soon as possible.
d) Students on paid placements might not be eligible for the Imperial Bursary.
e) To be eligible for the Imperial Bursary, we must receive your household income from the Student Loans Company by 1 May following the start of your academic year.

16. If you have been offered funding by the Research Councils, please ensure that you have read the most up-to-date postgraduate funding guide; you will need to adhere to the terms and conditions laid out there.

17. Deferrals, withdrawals and interruption of studies

a) You must inform the Student Financial Support team immediately of any interruptions to your study, particularly if they are likely to affect your attendance and registration status at College.
b) If you withdraw from your course or take an interruption of study (IOS) you must notify us immediately by contacting us here. If you take an IOS your bursary will be postponed until you re-register.
c) Bursaries and scholarships are not transferable. If you transfer to another institution or withdraw from the College, any payments due to you will be cancelled and any overpayments are recoverable.
d) We will not provide scholarship or bursary support for any period of repeat study.
e) Awards cannot be deferred.

18. Student Financial Support may at any time, at their discretion, withdraw or recover an award for breach of any of the above conditions.

19. The College reserves the right to place a limit on financial support where a student is in receipt of other funding.

20. Information on students is shared within the Imperial College community and donors (where applicable and relevant to your award) in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998.

a) Where awards have specific eligibility criteria (e.g. satisfactory academic progression), supporting evidence may be shared with named donors in order to verify continued eligibility.
b) Award recipients may be expected to meet with donors.

21. If you are in receipt of an award to study that is restricted to students on the basis of nationality or residency; please note that, in accordance with the Equality Act 2010, you must not intend to exercise in Great Britain skills you have obtained as a result of your training at the College and you must not be ordinarily resident in an EEA state.

22. These terms and conditions are the formal rules which regulate centrally funded awards. As such, there are no appeal procedures associated with funding from the Student Financial Support team.

All courses in the fourth year are at Master’s level and some are shared with specialised MSc courses. In addition, one of the options taken in the third year may be chosen from the fourth year list.

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