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At the beginning of all physics courses all students study core areas of physics and mathematics to give a common foundation for specialization as the course progresses. Several different degree programmes are available, but with the common core material it is frequently possible to switch from one physics course to another at the end of the first year. The high level of research in the Department feeds through to making the undergraduate courses up-to-date, relevant and interesting.
The physics course covers a wide range of areas within the subject with advanced options in higher years. There is also include extensive practical and project work, with a very wide range of skills development leading to many careers options.
There are two main career routes for physics graduates, both of which have many branches;
- technical, physics related careers
- non-physics careers
Physics graduates are sought after for many non-physics jobs, such as finance, accountancy, business, management consultancy as described below.
Technical physics related jobs are available in high technology and related industries, including medicine, biotechnology, electronics, optics, aerospace, computation and nuclear technology; physicists work in research, in development, and in general production. For example, physicists work in hospitals as Medical Physicists who work on radiation therapy, scanning and other physics related medical functions. Many physics graduates also take up careers in education, teaching in schools, colleges of further education or universities. Many physics graduates will go on to study for a PhD in physics, which provides the opportunity to explore a particular part of physics in great detail for three years and can enhance employment prospects.
Physics graduates are also successful in careers such as the City, finance, business, insurance, taxation and accountancy, where their problem solving skills and numeracy are highly valued.
Over a lifetime, only graduates in medicine or law earn more than those with a physics degree (source: Institute of Physics 2004 Salary Survey).
Physics graduates are highly employable and we are pleased that those from Queens are rated as the most employable in the UK. Furthermore, they are at least as employable as graduates from anywhere in the UK with degrees in what are often considered more vocational subjects such as Aeronautical Engineering, Chemical Engineering or Computer Science (source: The Times Good University Guide 2005).
Degree Plus and other related initiatives: Recognising student diversity, as well as promoting employability enhancements and other interests, is part of the developmental experience at Queens. Students are encouraged to plan and build their own, personal skill and experiential profile through a range of activities including; recognised Queens Certificates, placements and other work experiences (at home or overseas), Erasmus study options elsewhere in Europe, learning development opportunities and involvement in wider university life through activities, such as clubs, societies, and sports.
Queens actively encourages this type of activity by offering students an additional qualification, the Degree Plus Award (and the related Researcher Plus Award for PhD and MPhil students). Degree Plus accredits wider experiential and skill development gained through extra-curricular activities that promote the enhancement of academic, career management, personal and employability skills in a variety of contexts. As part of the Award, students are also trained on how to reflect on the experience(s) and make the link between academic achievement, extracurricular activities, transferable skills and graduate employment. Participating students will also be trained in how to reflect on their skills and experiences and can gain an understanding of how to articulate the significance of these to others, e.g. employers.
Overall, these initiatives, and Degree Plus in particular, reward the energy, drive, determination and enthusiasm shown by students engaging in activities over-and-above the requirements of their academic studies. These qualities are amongst those valued highly by graduate employers.
Detailed Course FactsApplication deadline January 15 Tuition fee
- EUR 4160 Year (EEA)
- EUR 13380 Year (Non-EEA)
England, Scotland and Wales £9,000; EU £3,575; International: £11,500Start date September 2015 Duration full-time 48 months Languages Take an IELTS test
MSci (Master in Science)
These four-year degrees are aimed at the more able and committed students who intend to practise the profession of physics in research and development, in industry or academia, at the highest level.
Single Honours MSci options are available in Physics, Physics with Medical Applications, Physics with Astrophysics, Physics with Extended Studies in Europe and Theoretical Physics. A Joint Honours MSci option is also available in Applied Mathematics and Physics.
Transfer from the three-year BSc degree to the MSci is permitted up to the end of Stage 2. Students who successfully complete the four- year MSci qualify for the degree of MSci (Hons) in the relevant option.
Stages 1 and 2 are identical to those for the BSc degree. At Stage 3, a selection is made from the modules available for the BSc. Also studied are the Professional Skills Programme - where important skills are developed, such as computer programming in C, multimedia presentation, and personal projection - and Synoptic Physics - where a variety of scientific themes such as symmetry, people in physics, ecology and cosmology is studied in depth, with cross-links being emphasised.
At Stage 4, specialist modules are available, broadly reflecting research interests of those teaching in the Department. These modules are:
Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics
Condensed Matter and Materials Science
Laser and Plasma Physics
Medical Devices and Applications
Also in this year, a major project is carried out in association with one of these research divisions, and through this project students gain an intensive insight into modern research methods.
English Language Requirements
IELTS band : 6
To study at this university, you have to speak English. We advice you totake an IELTS test. More About IELTS
MSci other options
- A-level AAB at A-level including Mathematics and Physics
- Irish Leaving Certificate AB2B2B2B2B2 including Higher Level grade A and B2 in any order in Mathematics and Physics
For Physics with Extended Studies in Europe the chosen language must be offered at A-level or equivalent. The language options available are French or Spanish.
No work experience is required.
- 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 Queen's University Belfast.
Students in the School can benefit from scholarships and bursaries provided by the School of Mathematics and Physics and by external companies.
The degrees are accredited by the Institute of Physics with the exception of the new Physics with Financial Mathematics pathway, for which accreditation will be sought in the near future. Since it contains all the core physics elements common to the other accredited pathways it is anticipated that this accreditation will be granted.