Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 10.8 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 19 k / Year(s)  
StudyQA ranking:1771 Duration:36 months You need IELTS certificate

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Our Physics degree programmes reflect the huge diversity of modern physics, with modules ranging from General Relativity to Nuclear Astrophysics to Medical Imaging. We prize our flexibility, which allows you to switch between any of the specialist Physics degrees during your first year, and even to change between some programmes as late as the second year. A particularly attractive aspect of these modular programmes is that you can select options in all years to complement the core subjects.

Many universities offer the chance of a ‘sandwich’ year, but the University of Surrey knows more about it than most. We have been placing students with companies for more than 40 years. Placement employers are often so impressed with the student’s performance that they offer them a permanent job when the student graduates.

After your degree, you might decide to become a professional scientist, but physics opens other doors too. Your skills will be valued by a wide range of employers in areas such as journalism, law, IT, education and finance.

What you'll study

Studying on our general Physics programmes will give you a thorough understanding of all the core elements of traditional physics, including such key topics as particle physics, atoms and molecules, quantum mechanics and astrophysics. The Physics programmes will give you the greatest access to our full range of option modules, allowing you to tailor your studies to fully match your interest in physics. Our programmes are designed to be varied and flexible. Providing a thorough grounding in the basics of the subject, our modular structure allows you to select optional modules of interest.

Our MPhys programme will interest you if you are considering a career in research. Explore the discipline to a greater depth with additional core modules, including problem solving and a research year. The BSc programme allows you to take a Professional Training placement year option after Year 2. Opportunities range from research to engineering or computing, with placements in small and large organisations, national laboratories, hospitals and government agencies. Assessment of the BSc Professional Training year contributes 10 per cent towards your total degree award.

After your degree, you might decide to become a professional scientist, but physics opens other doors too. Your skills will be valued by a wide range of employers in areas such as journalism, law, IT, education and finance.

Career opportunities

Physicists are highly sought after in industry, research, education, management, medicine, law and business, because of their broad practical skills and knowledge of fundamental theory. Our degrees will provide you with the analytical, experimental and computational skills valued in a wide range of career opportunities.

All Surrey Physics students learn a range of employability skills during their studies. These include a dedicated Year 1 module, Scientific Investigation Skills, which covers key communication skills, group work and presentations, problem solving in the laboratory environment, plus sessions on interview techniques, CV preparation and job applications. Students who take either the Professional Training or research year placements also get invaluable employment experience at their host institution.

Many of our graduates, particularly those with an MPhys degree, go on to postgraduate degrees in order to become researchers. Other graduates have launched careers with multinational companies (such as Shell International Petroleum, 3M, GEC Marconi Research, Nokia and BT), with public bodies (such as the National Physical Laboratory, the BBC, the NHS and the Defence Research Agency), and with small enterprises (such as Surrey Medical Imaging Systems and private consultancies). Starting salaries are in the region of £20,000 per annum.

Detailed Course Facts

Application deadline 15 January 2014 - UK or EU; 30 June 2014 - non-EU Tuition fee
  • EUR 10790 Year (EEA)
  • EUR 19000 Year (Non-EEA)

UK/EU Students -£9,000.00 ;
Overseas Students - £15,920.00

Start date September 2015 Duration full-time 36 months Languages Take an IELTS test
  • English
Delivery mode On Campus Educational variant Full-time

Course Content

Year 1 (FHEQ Level 4)

Year 1 gives you the core physics and mathematics you need. You will get to grips with the fundamental principles of physics and be introduced to modern physics, from quantum mechanics to relativity. Building on these principles, you will explore the breadth of the world of physics, looking at atoms, star formation, cosmology, the Schrödinger equation, and even measure the speed of light. You will also be introduced to the theories developed to deal with physical processes beyond the normal speeds and sizes of everyday life. See our world through Schrödinger’s eyes.Modules include:

  • Atoms, Molecules and Quanta
  • Employability Skills and Communication
  • Mathematical and Computational Physics
  • Oscillations and Waves
  • The Universe

Year 2 (FHEQ Level 5)

In Year 2, you will continue to expand your understanding of and experience with both classical and modern physical theories and concepts. In addition, you will be able to choose the areas that you want to specialise in and tailor your degree pathway to suit your interests by selecting from a choice of optional modules. Modules include:

  • Electromagnetic Waves
  • Energy and Entropy
  • Nuclear and Particle Physics

Specialist and optional modules include:

  • Modern Optics and Applications
  • Space Science

Professional Training placement (optional)

Taking a Professional Training year can add real value to your experience and will allow you to make your theoretical understanding come alive in the world outside university. This experience will not only be important when you graduate, but will also help you get the most from the final year of your undergraduate degree. If you decide not to do the Professional Training year, you proceed directly to Year 3 to complete your taught modules and graduate in your third year.

Year 3 (FHEQ Level 6)

Year 3 will see you specialise in your chosen field and deliver your final-year project. Through your work on this final-year project, you will develop your scientific writing skills, as well as your communication and presentation style. BSc students undertake an extended research project in their final semester and can currently choose up to six optional modules. Modules include:

  • General Relativity and Cosmology
  • Light and Matter
  • Medical Imaging
  • Nuclear Astrophysics
  • Photonics and Nanotechnology
  • Quantum Physics

Year 4 (MPhys only, FHEQ Level 7)

Our MPhys programmes are four-year programmes with an integrated research year that is unique in the UK. MPhys students undertake a problem-solving module and choose up to five optional modules. The range of modules available may vary from year to year, but your freedom to choose which options to study remains our priority. The unique research year begins after you have completed half of your Year 3 taught modules, at the end of the Autumn semester.Modules include:

  • MPhys Research Year (project in one of the world’s top laboratories)
  • Non-Linear Physics
  • Topics in Theoretical Physics


You will have a stimulating mixture of lectures, laboratory work, tutorials, practical exercises and computational classes. There will be assigned coursework, problem solving and projects. Computers are used extensively, as teaching aids via self-learning packages, in the laboratory for experimental control and data analysis, in modelling of physical problems and for effective communication.

Eight practical laboratory half-modules are designed to introduce particular elements of physics, experimental design, data analysis, background research and technical writing. A ninth module introduces computational modelling, the topic of which can be based upon your personal interests.

English Language Requirements

IELTS band : 6.5

To study at this university, you have to speak English. We advice you to

take an IELTS test. More About IELTS



MPhys: A-level grades AAB

BSc: A-level grades ABB

Access to HE Diploma

GCSE English Language and Mathematics at grade C or above (or equivalent).

BTEC (QCF Level 3) Extended Diploma

MPhys: DDD (in an appropriate subject, with a supporting A-level in Mathematics at grade A)

BSc: DDM (in an appropriate subject, with a supporting A-level in Mathematics at grade B or above)

Cambridge Pre-U

GCSE English Language and Mathematics at grade C or above (or equivalent).

European Baccalaureate

MPhys: 75%

BSc: 74%

(including 8 in Mathematics and Physics)

International Baccalaureate

MPhys: 35 points

BSc: 34 points

(to include Mathematics and Physics grade 6 at HL)

Other international qualifications

If you are an international student and you don’t meet the entry requirements to this degree, we offer the International Foundation Year.

Required subjects

GCSE English Language and Mathematics at grade C or above (or equivalent).

For all programmes: Mathematics and Physics required to A-level (or equivalent).

Selection process

Offers are normally made in terms of grades. Suitable candidates may be invited to an Applicant Day. During the visit to the University the candidate can find out more about the programme and meet staff and students.

English language requirements

Non-native speakers of English will normally be required to have IELTS 6.5 or above, with a minimum of 6.0 in each sub-skill (or equivalent).

We offer intensive English language pre-sessional courses, designed to take you to the level of English ability and skill required for your studies here.

Work Experience

No work experience is required.

Related Scholarships*

  • Academic Excellence Scholarship

    "The Academic Excellence Scholarship can provide up to a 50 % reduction in tuition per semester. These scholarships will be renewed if the student maintains superior academic performance during each semester of their 3-year Bachelor programme. The scholarship will be directly applied to the student’s tuition fees."

  • Access Bursary

    Bursary for UK students all subjects where the variable tuition fee rate is payable.

  • Alumni Bursary

    Alumni Bursary for UK Undergraduate students

* The scholarships shown on this page are suggestions first and foremost. They could be offered by other organisations than University of Surrey.


Bursaries and scholarships

We encourage applications from everyone with the ability to study for a Surrey degree, and understand that finance is a factor that affects most people’s decisions. We are committed to making sure that we offer support for students who might need it.

Our bursaries and scholarships are among the most competitive in the country, with both merit-based and means-tested awards available.

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