Fundamentals of Physics A
In a nutshell
Physics underpins everyday life, from the structure of the universe to the smartphone in your hand. A degree in physics with Salford will put you in position to discover the next scientific breakthroughs and technological innovations that will shape life in the future.
Our fascinating course, accredited by the Institute of Physics, provides a specialised blend physics and acoustics modules. You will advance your knowledge of sound using world-renowned facilities including our anechoic chamber - the quietest place in north-west England.
- Learn the fundamentals of acoustics and physics, and the connecting mathematical principles
- Benefit from the department’s strong links with industry
- Learn in world-class acoustics facilities
- Benefit from a placement year in industry between your second and third year
This is for you if...
You have a strong academic background in physics and mathematics
You are passionate about sound, with a strong background and general interest in science and audio technology
You have a keen and enquiring mind
You want to gain experience in industry alongside your degree
All about the course
In year one, you will explore the fundamentals of physics and the connecting mathematical principles. In year two, you will progress to develop an understanding of physics specialisms including classical and quantum waves and properties of matter. You’ll also learn the principles of acoustics.
In year three, you will complete your final project, alongside modules in nuclear and particle physics, Maxwell’s equation and quantum mechanics. You can also choose to focus on speech and music or computer simulation for acoustics.
Industrial Placement Option
You will undertake a year in industry as part of your course. This will take place between your second and third year. Industry placements provide an excellent opportunity to develop your CV, gain hands-on experience and build connections in your chosen industry.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Digital Signal Processing
This module gives a thorough grounding in the techniques and applications of digital technology in the acquisition, processing, storage and transmission of acoustic signals.
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.
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.
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 Placement Year
You will benefit from a year spent in industry which will enable you to develop your CV, gain hands-on experience and build connections in industry.
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.
Project in Physics
This project will allow you to carry out a research or development project individually, under the guidance of a personal supervisor.
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.
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.
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.
Computer Simulation for Acoustics (year one for part time)
You will learn the fundamental principles of computer simulation techniques: geometric room acoustics, finite element method, and boundary element method using COMSOL and related software packages. You will undertake practical problem solving using computer modelling of acoustical systems and assess the field of application, accuracy and limitations of the computer simulation methods.
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?
You will develop your knowledge and skills through a blend of theoretical, collaborative and practical methods:
- Practical activities
You will be assessed through a combination of formats:
- Lab exercises
The Joule Physics Laboratories include a purpose-built suite of large, open-space Teaching Laboratories.
Physics student facilities also include:
- Main Joule Physics Teaching Laboratory
- Secondary Joule Physics Teaching Laboratory
- Student Laboratory Workroom
- Electronics Laboratory
- Optics Laboratory
- Laser Laboratory
- Physics Computing Laboratory
- School Project Laboratory
- High-Performance Computing & 3D Visualisation Facilities
Our acoustics laboratories on the main campus are regarded as world-class. We have a full range of specialist test chambers: full anechoic chamber, two semi-anechoic chambers, transmission suite, two large and one small reverberation chambers, ITU standard listening room equipped with a 96 channel Wave Field Synthesis system, 3D Ambisonic listening booth, audiometric test facilities and a range of modern instrumentation and equipment. We are accredited to perform no less than twelve types of test and the test chambers are maintained by a team of commercially funded technical staff.
We also have a UKAS accredited Calibration Laboratory which provides a full scale commercial service to industry. All of these facilities are available for students.
What about after uni?
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 can open doors to a wide range of career paths. Typical employment sectors, including medical physics, defence, finance, research, education, engineering and the nuclear industry.
Recent employers of graduates from this course include: ADT, British Nuclear Fuels, European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS) Astrium, Gabriel Scientific Consultancy and the Royal Air Force.
We offer a range of specialism postgraduate study paths to help you take your career even further. We even offer a sizeable fee discount to our graduates and alumni.
The course team has a wide range of long-standing and professional relationships with Industry in the North West and beyond, ensuring that you will have extensive industry contact throughout your studies. Recent collaborators 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).
Your year in industry will increase your employability as you will have hands-on industry experience.
What you need to know
- Accredited by the Institute of Physics (IOP) with regular lectures from visiting industry professionals with associated case study problems
- Industrial placement year option
- International students can apply
If you have solid results in Physics and Mathematics, a keen and enquiring mind and want a wide range of career options available to you on graduation, this is the degree for you.
We positively welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to successfully pursue a programme of study in higher education. Students who do not have formal entry qualifications are required to sit a written assessment which is designed for this purpose. Support in preparing for the written assessment is available from the University. Please contact Jos Hirst the Director of Admissions for further information.
English language requirements
International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this.
English Language and maths at grade C/grade 4 or above
You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.
UCAS tariff points
104-112 points including grade C or above in Maths and Physics. A Pass in the Practical Element of Science A levels must be achieved
GCE A level
104-112 points including Mathematics at grade C and Physics at grade C. A Pass in the Practical Element of Science A levels must be achieved
BTEC National Diploma
|30 points, 5 points each from Mathematics and Physics at Higher Level|
Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)
We 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 have received your application we will 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.
|Type of study||Year||Fees|
|Full-time home/EU||2019/20||£9,250per year|
|Full-time international||2019/20||£14,820per year|
You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.
Thanks to the generosity of the Morson Group, applicants for this course can qualify to apply for one of five scholarships. 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 following registration and enrolment in September 2019. Priority will be given to students who:
- Can demonstrate the scholarship will provide the necessary support during their studies;
- Would otherwise be deterred from an undergraduate degree by tuition fees and associated living costs;
- Live in the North West England;
- Have at least 112 UCAS points or equivalent.
All set? Let's apply
Course ID F386