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Royal Holloway, University of London

Theoretical Physics

UCAS Code: F321

Master of Science (with Honours) - Msci (Hon)

Entry requirements


A level

A,A,A-A,B,B

Where an applicant is taking the EPQ alongside A-levels, the EPQ will be taken into consideration and result in lower A-level grades being required. Socio-economics factors which may have impacted an applicant's education will be taken into consideration and alternative offers may be made to these applicants. Required subjects: Mathematics and Physics, plus a Pass in the practical element of any Science A-levels being taken

Access to HE Diploma

D:30,M:15

Including Distinction in all Maths and Physics units. Please note that the Access to Higher Education Diploma will only be acceptable if the applicant has had a considerable break from education.

Applicants with the Cambridge Pre-U are strongly encouraged to apply to Royal Holloway. Offers will be made on the basis of equivalent A-Level grades as can be found on the Royal Holloway website.

GCSE/National 4/National 5

We require at least five GCSEs at grade A*-C or 9 - 4 including English and Mathematics.

International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

32

6,5,5 at Higher Level including 6 in Maths at Higher Level and 5 in Physics at Higher Level with a minimum of 32 points overall.

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

H2,H2,H2,H3,H3

Including H2 in Maths and H2 in Physics

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

DD

Plus grades A in A-level Maths and A in A-level Physics. Plus a Pass in the practical element of any Science A-levels taken.

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

D

Plus grades A in A-level Maths and A in A-level Physics. Plus a Pass in the practical element of any Science A-levels taken.

Scottish Advanced Higher

A,A,A-A,B,B

Including Maths and Physics.

Scottish Higher

A,A,A,B,B

Including A in Maths and B in Physics.

Requirements are as for A-levels where one non-subject-specified A-level can be replaced by the same grade in the Welsh Baccalaureate - Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate.

UCAS Tariff

128-168

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

100%
Applicants receiving offers

About this course


Course option

4years

Full-time | 2019

Subject

Theoretical physics

One of the best-known theories in science, Einstein’s theory of relativity, came from the ‘mere’ observation that Clerk-Maxwell’s theory of electromagnetism and the Galilean relativity were incompatible. Beyond this and since the development of quantum mechanics, theoretical physics has played an important part in constantly questioning what we know, by putting forward deeper and usually more mathematical expressions of understanding and explanation.

On our four-year Theoretical Physics MSci, you will cover all the core material that a graduate physicist would be expected to know, but there will be more emphasis on developing what you will have learned during A Level Mathematics and Further Mathematics, to allow a deeper conceptual understanding of classical and modern physics. This emphasis on theoretical concepts and foundations could help give you a deeper appreciation of the beauty and surprises of Physics.

Because of the theoretical nature of this course, you’ll spend less time in the laboratory in later years, with options from more theoretical areas, such as Quantum Theory, Further Mathematical Methods, Stellar Astrophysics, General Relativity & Cosmology and Non-Linear & Chaotic Systems to provide an emphasis on advanced theoretical topics in Physics.

Your fourth year is intercollegiate, which means you can pick choices from other University of London colleges – modules can include Quantum Computation, Nanoscale Physics and others. You’ll also develop experimental, conceptual and observational skills from your final year Major Project, which will make you an attractive candidate in a range of sectors, including management and finance, as well as scientific, technical, engineering and teaching careers.

Develop the underlying mathematical and theoretical skills required for physics.

Potential final projects in theoretical physics include topological quantum matter, super-conductivity and fluidity, quantum optics, quantum information processing, standard model phenomenology, particle cosmology and quantum field theory.

Take modules from the Department of Mathematics, such as Non-linear Phenomena and Chaos.

Modules

Please refer to our website for information https://www.royalholloway.ac.uk/courses/home.aspx

Assessment methods

Your course will be assessed by a combination of examinations and in-course assignments in the form of essays or presentations.

Tuition fees

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

Channel Islands
£9,250
per year
England
£9,250
per year
EU
£9,250
per year
International
£19,400
per year
Northern Ireland
£9,250
per year
Scotland
£9,250
per year
Wales
£9,250
per year

The Uni


Course location:

Royal Holloway, University of London

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.

86%
med
Theoretical 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

90%
Staff make the subject interesting
90%
Staff are good at explaining things
86%
Ideas and concepts are explored in-depth
78%
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

92%
Library resources
80%
IT resources
92%
Course specific equipment and facilities
82%
Course is well organised and has run smoothly

Student voice

Staff value students' opinions

Who studies this subject and how do they get on?

82%
UK students
18%
International students
74%
Male students
26%
Female students
67%
2:1 or above
11%
Drop out rate

Most popular A-Levels studied (and grade achieved)

B
B
C

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.

£25,000
med
Average annual salary
100%
high
Employed or in further education
71%
low
Employed in a role where degree was essential or beneficial

Top job areas of graduates

24%
Information technology and telecommunications professionals
9%
Business, finance and related associate professionals
7%
Business, research and administrative 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.

Theoretical 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.

£26k

£26k

£31k

£31k

£37k

£37k

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.

Have a question about this info? Learn more here

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.

Have a question about this info? Learn more here

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.

Have a question about this info? Learn more here

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