Undergraduate BSc (Hons)

Physics

School of Science, Engineering and Environment

Full-time

With placement

Attendance

Three year

Four year

Course

September 2019

Next enrolment
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Introduction

In a nutshell

Physics underpins everyday life, from the structure of the universe to the smartphone in your hand. A Physics degree will put you in position to discover the next scientific breakthroughs and innovations.

Physics is at the heart of modern life. By having the knowledge to discover future technological advances and find applications for scientific discoveries, qualified physicist are driving our future. Accredited by the Institute of Physics, this course provides you with an advanced knowledge base ready to build a career in teaching, research or industry– delivered using engaging tutorial and laboratory activities. We use small group teaching to make you feel supported and able to ask the questions that satisfy your enquiring mind.

During your studies, you’ll develop an understanding of waves, and properties of matter. You’ll gain advanced knowledge in fields of nuclear and particle physics. As you progress, you can add specialisms in acoustics or nanotechnology. Delivered over three years – or four with a placement year, you’ll study a suite of modules designed to embed theoretical knowledge and creative application to help you become a world-class physicist.

This course is also available with an integrated masters route.

You will:
  • Explore physics fundamentals, including classical dynamics, static and dynamic charges, quantum mechanics, fundamentals of relativity and atomic and nuclear physics
  • Expand your knowledge and systematic understanding in quantum mechanics of atoms, molecules and solids, including the origin and limitations of the associated laws
  • Understand the laws of physics that govern the behaviour of all systems, with application in modern technologies
  • Experience computer laboratory sessions and learn the importance of mathematics in a quantitative description of physics, using symbolic computing and programming
  • Develop skills desired by industry and academia, including team working, problem solving, communication and presentation skills
Placement

options available

International

students accepted

Course accreditations
Institute of Physics Logo

This is for you if...

1.

You’re excited about mathematics and physics with a strong academic background that you want to take into higher education

2.

You’re a problem-solver with an enquiring mind and a fascination about the world around you

3.

You want to take your interest in physics into your future career, whether that is in industry, teaching or research

Course details

All about the course

Our physics courses combine a fundamental understanding of the laws of physics that govern the behaviour of systems of all sizes, alongside an understanding of their applications in modern industry. The course is built around a core of compulsory modules that give you a thorough grounding in physics. We place great emphasis on small group teaching to make you feel fully supported and able to ask the questions.You'll also take part in group projects that will enable you to develop desirable industrial and research skills in team working, problem-solving, communication and presentation skills.

BSc (Hons) Physics features a suite of modules that provide a thorough grounding in physics that will also nurture your team-working, problem-solving and communication skills.  We know that physics can be a challenging subject, so we use small group teaching to make you feel fully supported and able to ask the questions that satisfy your enquiring mind.

Developing applied knowledge and skills is at the heart of Salford’s values, so we strive to embed this as a core learning objective. In year one, you'll explore the whole breadth of physics, including classical physics, quantum physics, particle physics, and relativity. You’ll study mathematical techniques and use computers to solve problems.

As you progress to year two, you’ll develop a deeper understanding of physics specialisms, such as classical and quantum waves, and properties of matter. You’ll also complete a group project where you will build and demonstrate a piece of physics-related equipment. In your final year, you'll study advanced topics including quantum mechanics of atoms, molecules, nuclear physics, relativity, electromagnetic theory, and wave optics. You’ll also demonstrate and apply the knowledge and skills you've developed during your studies in your final research-based project.

INDUSTRY PLACEMENTS

Placements are a great way to expand you knowledge and apply theory to real-life practice. On this course, you'll have the option to take an industrial placement year between year two and three. Although you'll be responsible for securing your placement, a tutor will support you, monitor your progress and assess your final placement report. Industry placements have a number of benefits. You can improve your employment prospects after graduation, see physics in action and receive a salary. Evidence suggests that many of our students who choose an industry placement year improve their final degree classification.

Year one

Fundamentals of Physics A

Delivered through lectures, problem-based learning and laboratory sessions, in this module you will be introduced to the following subjects: classical dynamics, static and dynamic charges, fundamentals of quantum mechanics, fundamentals of relativity and atomic and nuclear physics.

Fundamentals of Physics B

Delivered through key note lectures, tutorial and problem-based learning classes and practical laboratory sessions, in this module you will be introduced to the following subjects: thermodynamics, microscopic and macroscopic properties of matter, fundamentals of waves and geometrical optics and wave optics.

Fundamentals of Physics C

In this module you will develop the knowledge and understanding in the area of Electricity, Electronics, Optics and Optoelectronics including the origin and limitations of the associated laws. You will also develop analytical, numerical and computer based problem solving skills in the above areas. This module will also develop your practical laboratory skills.

Mathematics and Computing

Building on the subject knowledge from the Mathematics module you will further you knowledge of differential equations and series with emphasis on their applications to physics and develop your awareness of the importance of mathematics in a quantitative description of physics. You will be introduced to the use of spreadsheets, computing programming and symbolic computing.

Mathematics

An understanding and ability to use mathematics are essential skills for success in physics this module will review A level mathematics covering the following subjects: algebra, trigonometry, functions, geometry, vectors, complex numbers and calculus, with emphasis on their applications to physics.

Frontiers of Physics and Entrepreneurial Skills

Being able to apply your scientific knowledge and thinking to unfamiliar problems is a key skill for success in industry and research. By introducing you to this skill, along with other important skills identified by our industrial and academic partners, they will become second nature, giving you a head start in your chosen career.

Year two

Classical and Quantum Waves

You will develop a knowledge and critical understanding in the area of classical and quantum waves including the origin and limitations of the associated laws. You will also gain analytical and numerical problem solving skills in this topic.

Computing Laboratory

The Computing Laboratory module will help you build computer programming skills, so you can tackle simple non-analytic physical and engineering problems. You will use the numerical methods and techniques frequently encountered in physical and engineering challenges, and learn how to implement these them on the computer. You will also learn about interfacing sensors to computers and computer control of experiments.

Physics Laboratory

Gain breadth and depth in experimental techniques in the Physics laboratory. You will strengthen you knowledge and analytical technique around the physical principles associated with electrons and physics. You will develop your team-work skills within the context of project-based experiments and acquire effective and impactful report writing skills.

Mathematical Methods and Applications

In this module you will develop a knowledge and critical understanding in the area of Mathematics Methods for Physics including the origin and limitations of the associated laws. You will also develop analytical, numerical and computer based problem solving skills in the area of Mathematical Methods for Physics.

Properties of Matter

Through this module you will develop a knowledge and critical understanding in the area of the properties of matter including the origin and limitations of the associated laws. You will also develop analytical and numerical problem solving skills in the area of the properties of matter.

Plus one module from below:

Principles of Acoustics

You will build on your knowledge and skills from the Introduction to acoustics module, to give you a thorough understanding of the fundamentals of acoustics. Subjects include: Fourier's theorem, solutions of 1-D wave equation, acoustic impedance, reflection factor and absorption coefficient, 3-D wave equation, radiation impedance, and behaviour of sound in 3D enclosures.

Physics Universe: Introduction to Astrophysics

Gain knowledge and critical understanding of astrophysics including the origin and limitations of the associated laws.

University Wide Language Programme

Choose to study a world language in a friendly, supportive environment. Delivered over two semesters, with additional resources available via Blackboard, you will receive around 50 hours of supported learning to help you progress and consolidate your listening, reading, speaking and writing core skills. Available languages include Arabic, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

Year three

Maxwell's Equat and Wave Optics

You will develop a knowledge and systematic understanding in the area of Maxwell’s Equations and Wave Optics, including the origin and limitations of the associated laws. You will also develop expertise in analytical, numerical and computer based problem solving skills in the area of Maxwell’s Equations and Wave Optics.

Project in Physics

This project will allow you to carry out a research or development project individually, under the guidance of a personal supervisor.

Nuclear and Particle Physics

You will receive an overview of Nuclear Physics and gain an understanding of nuclear stability in terms of the Liquid Drop Model and of nuclear reactions involving neutrons, protons, electrons and neutrinos, and major experimental techniques and practical applications. The particle physics element will cover the basic discoveries of modern Particle Physics and introduce the ideas of Grand Unified Theory.

Quantum Mechanics Atoms Mole and Solid

Develop your knowledge and systematic understanding in quantum mechanics of atoms, molecules and solids including the origin and limitations of the associated laws. You will develop expertise in analytical, numerical and computer based problem solving skills in quantum mechanics of atoms, molecules and solids.

Plus one module from below:

Theoretical Physics

You will develop a knowledge and systematic understanding in the area of Theoretical Physics, including the origin and limitations of the associated laws.

Photonics and Nanotechnology

This module will enable you to develop a knowledge and systematic understanding in the area of Photonics and Nanotechnology including the origin and limitations of the associated laws.

Speech and Musical Acoustics

You will be introduced to speech production and modelling, speech analysis and synthesis with particular reference to the application of speech technology in modern communication devices. You will develop a systematic understanding of human perception of sound and its application in a musical context.

University Wide Language Programme

Choose to study a world language in a friendly, supportive environment. Delivered over two semesters, with additional resources available via Blackboard, you will receive around 50 hours of supported learning to help you progress and consolidate your listening, reading, speaking and writing core skills. Available languages include Arabic, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

What will I be doing?

TEACHING

You will develop your knowledge and skills through a blend of theoretical, collaborative and practical methods:

  • Lectures
  • Tutorials
  • Practical activities

Lectures and tutorial classes are complemented by practical laboratories which reinforce your understanding of the laws of physics and their application. These seminars are complemented by a problem-based learning laboratory, where you will embark on open ended group based exercises designed to enhance problem-solving skills. You;ll also have opportunities to learn about future careers in physics in weekly seminars delivered by physics graduates and industry professionals.

ASSESSMENT

You will be assessed through a combination of formats:

  • Lab exercises
  • Examinations
  • Reports

SCHOOL OF SCIENCE, ENGINEERING AND ENVIRONMENT

The School of Science, Engineering and Environment aims to transform the quality of life for society and the wellbeing of future generations through a better and more sustainable future. Our research expertise includes the built environment, cancer, data security, dementia, marine conservation, robotics, and sustainability.

We place our students at the heart of everything we do. With over 200 dedicated academic, technical and administrative members of staff we offer a robust support system for our student community. Our expanding suite of multidisciplinary programmes cover acoustics, architecture, biology, biomedicine, chemical sciences, computing, construction, engineering, environment (built and natural), geography, mathematics, physics, property, robotics, surveying and wildlife.

Facilities

We’re serious about science at Salford, and we have some great facilities to help you get to grips with Physics. Dedicated teaching facilities include specialist laboratories for electronics, optics, lasers, computing and composite materials. The Joule Physics Laboratories include a purpose-built suite of large, open-space teaching space.

We also have a femto-second pump probe facility, fully-equipped for operating our new Raman Scattering facility for use with high pressure diamond anvil cells. A high-pressure gas laboratory is available for investigations of hydrogen absorption and storage applications (automated gravimetric and volumetric instrumentation).

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

EMPLOYMENT

As a Salford physics graduate, you'll have no shortage of exciting career options. Due to the analytical and problem-solving nature of physics, this degree opens a wide range of pathways. Previous Salford physics graduates have found roles in a diverse range of sectors, including medical physics, defense, finance, research, education, engineering and the nuclear industry.

FURTHER STUDY

You might find you want to learn more about physics and related subjects, so we offer a range of specialism postgraduate study options to help you take your career and interests even further. Salford graduates and alumni also receive a significant fees discount.

A taste of what you could become

A Research Scientist

A Science Teacher

A Nanotechnologist

A Software Engineer

A Physicist

and more...

Career Links

We work with a range of organisations to ensure the course content remains relevant, but they also contribute annual seminars, research project opportunities and work placements. Recent organisations include:

Atkins Global, Technium OpTIC, Pilkington, Nuvia, Royal Navy, Astrium, BPD Acoustics, Nanoco Technologies, Salford Royal Hospital, BAE Systems, Centre for Alternative Technology, IOP (Institute of Physics) Publishing, NPower, Serco and TDA (Training and Development Agency for Schools).

These organisations add value to the course by sharing industrial skills and knowledge with you from the very start of your degree.

Requirements

What you need to know

APPLICANT PROFILE

This course is designed for someone who is passionate about physics and science in general. We're looking for applicants with an aptitude for mathematics and problem-solving.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENTS

If English is not your first language, you must demonstrate proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0, with no band below 5.5, is proof of this.

Standard entry requirements

GCSE

English Language and Mathematics at grade C/level 4 or above (or equivalent). You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below

UCAS tariff points

104-112 points including Mathematics and Physics

A Level

104-112 points

BTEC National Diploma

DMM in Engineering or Science

BTEC Higher National Diploma

DMM in Engineering or Science

Foundation Degree

104-112 points

Scottish Highers

104-112 points; Advanced Higher Mathematics at grade C and Physics at grade C; Higher CSYS Mathematics and Physics also required

Irish Leaving Certificate

104-112 points including Physics, Mathematics and Applied Mathematics at Higher Level

European Baccalaureate

Pass in Diploma of at least 60% from Science or Engineering

International Baccalaureate

28 points, 5 points each from Mathematics and Physics at Higher Level

Access to HE

104 - 112 in Engineering or Science

Other Qualifications

104-112 points

Alternative entry requirements

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We positively welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we receive your application, we'll assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.

There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.

Please contact Admissions for further information.

How much?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home/EU 2019/20 £9,250per year
Full-time international 2019/20 £14,820per year
Part-time 2019/20 Your annual fee will be calculated pro rata to the full-time fee according to the number of credits you are studying.
Additional costs

You should consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Scholarship Opportunity

Applicants for this course can qualify to apply for one of five scholarships provided thanks to the generosity of the Morson Group. Each scholarship is worth a total of £9,000, paid as two cash award instalments of £1,500 each per annum for a maximum of three years.

The scholarships aim to ensure that talented students starting their first year are not deterred from studying at the University of Salford for financial reasons.  Qualifying students will be encouraged to apply after registration and enrolment in September 2019.  More information about the scholarship.

Apply now

All set? Let's Apply

Enrolment dates

September 2019

September 2020

UCAS information

Course ID F300

Institution S03

Clearing 2019

Apply through Clearing and start this course in September 2019.

Call 0300 555 5030 today.

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