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Durham University

Physics

UCAS Code: F300

Bachelor of Science (with Honours) - BSc (Hons)

Entry requirements


A level

A*,A*,A

Specific subjects/grades required for entry: Mathematics and Physics are both required, with an A* required in either. The A* may alternatively be in Further Mathematics if taken. Specific subjects excluded for entry: General Studies and Critical Thinking. Information: Applicants taking Science A-levels that include a practical component will be required to take and pass this as a condition of entry. This refers only to English A Levels. We may request further information such as UMS marks.

Please contact the Physics department for advice.

Cambridge International Pre-U Certificate - Principal

D2,D2,D3

To include Mathematics and Physics.

International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

38

General information on subjects/grades required for entry: Twenty points (7, 7, 6) at Higher Level to include Mathematics and Physics.

Leaving Certificate - Higher Level (Ireland) (first awarded in 2017)

H1,H1,H2,H2,H2

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016)

D*D*D

Subject specific A Levels may also be required.

Scottish Advanced Higher

A,A,A

To include Mathematics and Physics.

Departments will normally make offers based on Advanced Highers. In the absence of 3 Advanced Highers, where these are not offered by the applicant’s school, offers comprising of Advanced Highers and Highers or a number of Highers may be made on a case by case basis.

UCAS Tariff

160-168

We've calculated how many Ucas points you'll need for this course.

74%
Applicants receiving offers

About this course


Course option

3.0years

Full-time | 2020

Subject

Physics

Durham is one of the leading physics and astronomy departments in the UK, enrolling around 170 students each year. The dedication to our teaching and research consistently puts us high up in all the league tables. While studying here you will benefit from the buzz and creative environment of a large research department and join a dynamic and focused intellectual community. Our research ranges from fundamental elementary particle physics and cosmology to more applied topics in which we collaborate closely with industry.

We offer degrees in Physics, Physics and Astronomy, and Theoretical Physics, all of which are accredited by the Institute of Physics. Our course structures have been designed to provide flexibility in your final choice of degree course. The three-year BSc degree is aimed at those mainly interested in a degree in Physics as a preparation for a career, not necessarily in the Physics area.

Our four-year MPhys degrees will suit those looking for professional training, leading to research in physics or a physics-related career. The first year of the BSc and MPhys degree courses in Physics, Physics and Astronomy, and Theoretical Physics is identical and it is possible to select modules in your second year such that you need not make a firm choice of course until the end of the second year.

**Year 1**
Foundations of Physics 1 is the main lecture module in the first year, and is complemented with a practical laboratory module, including an introduction to programming. Two mathematics modules are taken in the Department of Mathematical Sciences. There is a further module of choice, with Introduction to Astronomy proving to be very popular.

**Year 2**
Core modules: Foundations of Physics 2A/2B / Mathematical Methods in Physics / Laboratory Skills and Electronics
Additional topics also include Theoretical Physics 2 (the transition from classical to quantum mechanics), Stars and Galaxies (an exploration of astrophysics), and Physics in Society.

At the end of the year, you need to decide your degree title, choosing between: BSc Physics (F300) / MPhys Physics (F301) / MPhys Physics and Astronomy (FF3N) / MPhys Theoretical Physics (F344).

**Year 3**
Besides core modules in Foundations of Physics 3A/3B and Physics Problem-solving (which includes a computing project), there is a wide choice of topics, for example in: Planets and Cosmology / Theoretical Physics 3 / Maths Workshop / Physics into Schools / Team Project / Laboratory Project / BSc Project / A module taken in another department (subject to approval).

We review course structures and core content (in light of e.g. external and student feedback) every year, and will publish finalised core requirements for 2020 entry from September 2019.

**Study Abroad**
The experience of having lived independently abroad can be very rewarding in terms of employability and of personal development. For this reason, you are encouraged to apply during your degree for a year-long placement with one of the Physics Department's or the University's international partners, either in replacement of the third year of study within an MPhys degree or as an additional year of study. You may study in English at some of the partner universities, whereas at others foreign language skills are essential. You are fully supported by the Department both during the application process and during the year abroad.

Adding a supplementary international study placement to the BSc Physics degree or to an MPhys degree leads respectively to the degrees of BSc Physics with Year Abroad and MPhys Physics with Year Abroad. Adding a supplementary international work or training placement instead leads to the degrees of BSc Physics with Placement and MPhys Physics with Placement. Admissions to these degrees are through transfer from F300, F301, FF3N or F344 after Year 1.

For more information on this course, please see our website.

Modules

For more information on the content of this course, including module details, please see our website.

Tuition fees

Select where you currently live to see what you'll pay:

England
£9,250
per year
EU
£9,250
per year
International
£25,800
per year
Northern Ireland
£9,250
per year
Scotland
£9,250
per year
Wales
£9,250
per year

The Uni


Course locations:

University

John Snow College

St Aidan's

St Cuthbert's

Trevelyan

Josephine Butler College

South College

Collingwood

Hatfield

Van Mildert

George Stephenson College

St Hild and St Bede

St John's

No college preference

St Chad's

St Mary's

Grey

Department:

Physics

TEF rating:

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What students say


We've crunched the numbers to see if overall student satisfaction here is high, medium or low compared to students studying this subject(s) at other universities.

80%
med
Physics

How do students rate their degree experience?

The stats below relate to the general subject area/s at this university, not this specific course. We show this where there isn’t enough data about the course, or where this is the most detailed info available to us.

Physics

Teaching and learning

77%
Staff make the subject interesting
83%
Staff are good at explaining things
85%
Ideas and concepts are explored in-depth
79%
Opportunities to apply what I've learned

Assessment and feedback

Feedback on work has been timely
Feedback on work has been helpful
Staff are contactable when needed
Good advice available when making study choices

Resources and organisation

78%
Library resources
71%
IT resources
86%
Course specific equipment and facilities
80%
Course is well organised and has run smoothly

Student voice

Staff value students' opinions

Who studies this subject and how do they get on?

84%
UK students
16%
International students
76%
Male students
24%
Female students
83%
2:1 or above
3%
Drop out rate

Most popular A-Levels studied (and grade achieved)

A*
A*
A

After graduation


The stats in this section relate to the general subject area/s at this university – not this specific course. We show this where there isn't enough data about the course, or where this is the most detailed info available to us.

Physics

What are graduates doing after six months?

This is what graduates told us they were doing (and earning), shortly after completing their course. We've crunched the numbers to show you if these immediate prospects are high, medium or low, compared to those studying this subject/s at other universities.

£28,000
high
Average annual salary
91%
low
Employed or in further education
81%
med
Employed in a role where degree was essential or beneficial

Top job areas of graduates

29%
Business, research and administrative professionals
20%
Information technology and telecommunications professionals
12%
Teaching and educational professionals
What do graduate employment figures really tell you?

Although the subject has seen a bit of resurgence in recent years, the UK is still felt to be short of physics graduates, and in particular physicists training as teachers. If you want a career in physics research — in all sorts of areas, from atmospheric physics to lasers - you'll probably need to take a doctorate, and so have a think about where you would like to do that and how you might fund it (the government funds many physics doctorates, so you might not find it as hard as you think). With that in mind, it's not surprising that just over a fifth of physics graduates go on to take doctorates when they finish their degree, and well over a third of physicists take some kind of postgraduate study in total. Physics is highly regarded and surprisingly versatile, which is why physics graduates who decide not to stay in education are more likely to go into well-paid jobs in the finance industry than they are to go into science. The demand and versatility of physics degrees goes to explain why they're amongst the best-paid science graduates.

What about your long term prospects?

Looking further ahead, below is a rough guide for what graduates went on to earn.

Physics

The graph shows median earnings of graduates who achieved a degree in this subject area one, three and five years after graduating from here.

£27k

£27k

£34k

£34k

£36k

£36k

Note: this data only looks at employees (and not those who are self-employed or also studying) and covers a broad sample of graduates and the various paths they've taken, which might not always be a direct result of their degree.

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This is what the university has told Ucas about the criteria they expect applicants to satisfy; some may be compulsory, others may be preferable.

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This is the percentage of applicants to this course who received an offer last year, through Ucas.

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This is what the university has told Ucas about the course. Use it to get a quick idea about what makes it unique compared to similar courses, elsewhere.

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Course location and department:

This is what the university has told Ucas about the course. Use it to get a quick idea about what makes it unique compared to similar courses, elsewhere.

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Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF):

We've received this information from the Department for Education, via Ucas. This is how the university as a whole has been rated for its quality of teaching: gold silver or bronze. Note, not all universities have taken part in the TEF.

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This information comes from the National Student Survey, an annual student survey of final-year students. You can use this to see how satisfied students studying this subject area at this university, are (not the individual course).

We calculate a mean rating of all responses to indicate whether this is high, medium or low compared to the same subject area at other universities.

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This information is from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).

You can use this to get an idea of who you might share a lecture with and how they progressed in this subject, here. It's also worth comparing typical A-level subjects and grades students achieved with the current course entry requirements; similarities or differences here could indicate how flexible (or not) a university might be.

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Post-six month graduation stats:

This is from the Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey, based on responses from graduates who studied the same subject area here.

It offers a snapshot of what grads went on to do six months later, what they were earning on average, and whether they felt their degree helped them obtain a 'graduate role'. We calculate a mean rating to indicate if this is high, medium or low compared to other universities.

Have a question about this info? Learn more here

Graduate field commentary:

The Higher Education Careers Services Unit have provided some further context for all graduates in this subject area, including details that numbers alone might not show

Have a question about this info? Learn more here

The Longitudinal Educational Outcomes dataset combines HRMC earnings data with student records from the Higher Education Statistics Agency.

While there are lots of factors at play when it comes to your future earnings, use this as a rough timeline of what graduates in this subject area were earning on average one, three and five years later. Can you see a steady increase in salary, or did grads need some experience under their belt before seeing a nice bump up in their pay packet?

Have a question about this info? Learn more here