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MSc/PgDip Advanced Physics

Key facts

  • Start date: September
  • Accreditation: Institute of Physics
  • Study mode and duration: MSc: 12 months full-time, 24 months part-time
    PgDip: 9 months full-time, 21 months part-time
  • Rated: Number 1 for Physics research in the UK (REF2014 GPA Scores, Times Higher Education)

Study with us

  • focus on topics such as theoretical physics, quantum information, plasma physics and solid state physics
  • choose taught elements relevant to your career interests
  • gain transferable, problem solving and numeracy skills
  • opportunity to choose classes relevant to your interests
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Why this course?

Our four divisions – Nanoscience, Optics, Plasmas and the Institute of Photonics – all contribute research-based teaching expertise to the course. You can choose taught elements relevant to your career interests from a wide range of topics, including:

  • theoretical & computational physics
  • quantum optics and quantum information
  • complexity science
  • physics and the life sciences
  • solid-state physics
  • plasma physics

You'll put the knowledge gained in the taught components to use in a cutting-edge research project, which can be theoretical, computational or experimental.

Lasers

THE Awards 2019: UK University of the Year Winner

Chat to a student ambassador

If you want to know more about what it’s like to be a Science student at the University of Strathclyde, a selection of our current students are here to help!

Our Unibuddy ambassadors can answer all the questions you might have about courses and studying at Strathclyde, along with offering insight into their experiences of life in Glasgow and Scotland.

Chat now!

What you’ll study

You'll explore and master theoretical, computational and experimental physics skills. Two semesters of taught classes are made up of compulsory and optional modules. MSc students also undertake a three-month research project. 

Learning & teaching

Our teaching is based on lectures, tutorials, workshops, laboratory experiments, and research projects.

Assessment

The final assessment will be based on your performance in examinations, coursework, a research project and, if required, in an oral examination.

Facilities

The course is run by the Department of Physics. Departmental facilities include:

  • cutting-edge high-power laser research with SCAPA, researching the future of particle accelerators via laser-based acceleration
  • the Ultrafast Chemical Physics lab with state-of-the-art femtosecond laser systems for multi-dimensional IR spectroscopy
  • access to the top-of-the-range high performance and parallel computer facilities of ARCHIE-WeSt
  • a scanning electron microscopy suite for analysis of hard and soft matter
  • new high-power microwave research facility in the Technology & Innovation Centre
  • advanced quantum optics and quantum information labs
The Queen's Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education 2019 and 2021.
The Queen's Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education 2019 and 2021.
The Times / The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021. University of the Year shortlisted.
The Times / The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021. University of the Year shortlisted.
The Times & Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020 - Scottish University of the Year.
The Times & Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020 - Scottish University of the Year.
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Course content

Compulsory modules

Physics Skills

This module will provide you with necessary skills in IT, working with literature, data analysis, and written and oral communication to support a great learning experience in your programme.

Project

Students gain experience of research techniques by performing an open-ended cutting-edge research project that runs over summer after the taught component of the MSc. The topic may be from a programme relevant field in physics or its interdisciplinary applications. Students with the corresponding ambition and relevant qualification will be supported to find an alternative placement in chemistry or an industrial placement but this depends on availability. The work is normally carried out in the research laboratories under the individual supervision of an experienced researcher.

Electives

Research Skills

This course introduces core skills needed to obtain research funding and successfully manage the resulting research in both an academic and a commercial environment.

Introductory Nanoscience

The course addresses basic concepts relating to nanoscale physics before progressing to the techniques associated with production and characterisation of nanomaterials/nanostructures, and their potential impact in engineering, energy and healthcare.

Advanced Nanoscience 1: Imaging & Microscopy

The aim of this course is to introduce the spectroscopy, imaging and microscopy techniques associated with modern nanoscience such as:

  • Fluorescence methods
  • Single molecule imaging and microscopic techniques
  • Atomic force microscopy (AFM)
  • Electron microscopy
Advanced Nanoscience 2: Solid State Nanoscience

This course introduces advanced key concepts in modern nano-scale condensed matter physics and optics.

Modern computational methods to investigate these systems will then be introduced to illustrate methods of applying these concepts to realistic nanosystems.

Topics in Photonics: Laser & Nonlinear Optics

The course provides an introduction to laser physics, laser optics and nonlinear optics as required for the work in many photonic labs.

Advanced Topics in Photonics: Ultrafast Physics & Plasmas

The course provides an introduction to laser-plasma interaction, in particular with very high power and ultrashort pulses, and the resulting applications in radiation sources from the terahertz to the X-ray region, laser fusion and laser-based particle acceleration.

Photonics Materials & Devices (topics in solid state physics)

The course provides an introduction into semiconductor physics, semiconductor electronics and semiconductor photonics with an outlook on micro and nano-structures and current hot topics.

Advanced Photonics Devices

This introduces advanced photonics devices including their principles and applications (quantum confinement, waveguide optics, photonic and electronic bandgaps, photonic crystals).

Theoretical Quantum Information

The course provides an introduction to the basic concepts and theoretical ideas of quantum information processing.

Advanced Topics in Complex Systems

The course introduces concepts of complexity science as the synchronisation of nonlinear oscillators, nonlinear waves and solitons and self-organisation and pattern formation in spatially extended nonlinear systems.

Advanced Topics In Electromagnetism And Plasma Physics

The class introduces you to the primary methods for transmitting, storing and manipulating electromagnetic waves and the interaction of these waves with plasmas and plasma physics. It will look at both theoretical and practical considerations for a range of applications. 

Topics in Quantum Physics

This module will provide an introduction to advanced quantum physics concepts: Mixed states and density matrix, perturbation and scattering theory, quantization of the electromagnetic field, many particle systems, Dirac equation.

Computational Physics

The class provides an awareness of Python programming and its application to solve physics-problems as curve fitting, Fourier transforms, solving ordinary differential equations, etc.

Experimental Laboratories

This class introduces students to open-ended practical work in the laboratory conveying the basic skills of instrument handling, data management, record keeping, and to encourage development of report-writing and oral presentation skills. You're required to complete two experiments selected from a range of topics.

Advanced Topics in Quantum Optics

You'll be introduced to modern developments in the field of quantum optics and light-matter interactions:

  • interaction of light with two-level systems (Bloch equations, Mollow spectra, ...) and three-level systems (electromagnetically induced transparency, sub-natural linedwdiths, ...)
  • complex susceptibility and the quantum origin of optical nonlinearities
  • nonlinear  Schroedinger equation
  • open quantum systems and quantum optics in cavities
  • collective atom-light interactions
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Entry requirements

Academic requirements

Minimum second-class Honours degree, or overseas equivalent, in physics (Mathematics and Physics, Theoretical Physics, Astrohphysics, Engineering Physics etc), or a related subject.

Applicants from an engineering discipline need to have had sufficient exposure to fundamental physics courses in quantum mechanics and electromagnetism, or need to demonstrate that they can acquire the necessary background. Contact us about your application and the possibility of conversion courses.

English language requirements

You must have an English language minimum score of IELTS 6.0 (with no component below 5.5).

We offer comprehensive English language courses for students whose IELTS scores are below 6.0.

As a university, we now accept many more English language tests other than IELTS for overseas applicants, for example, TOEFL and PTE Cambridge. View the full list of accepted English language tests here.

Pre-Masters preparation course

The Pre-Masters Programme is a preparation course held at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre, for international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the academic entry requirements for a Masters degree at University of Strathclyde. The Pre-Masters programme provides progression to a number of degree options.

Upon successful completion, you'll be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

International students

We've a thriving international community with students coming here to study from over 100 countries across the world. Find out all you need to know about studying in Glasgow at Strathclyde and hear from students about their experiences.

Visit our international students' section

Map of the world.

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Fees & funding

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

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Scotland

£9,050

England, Wales & Northern Ireland

£9,050

International

£21,850

Available scholarships

Take a look at our scholarships search for funding opportunities.

Additional costs

International students may have associated visa and immigration costs. Please see student visa guidance for more information.

Please note: the fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

How can I fund my course?

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Scottish postgraduate students

Scottish postgraduate students may be able to apply for support from the Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS). The support is in the form of a tuition fee loan and for eligible students, a living cost loan. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from England

Students ordinarily resident in England may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance England. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from Wales

Students ordinarily resident in Wales may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance Wales. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from Northern Ireland

Postgraduate students who are ordinarily resident in Northern Ireland may be able to apply for support from Student Finance Northern Ireland. The support is a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Careers

A Masters degree in physics prepares you for a wide and versatile range of careers in science and engineering as well as all areas of management, financial services, etc. Many graduates proceed to a PhD.

Strathclyde physics graduates are working across the world in a number of different roles including:

  • Medical Physicist
  • Senior Engineer
  • Professor
  • Systems Engineer
  • Treasury Analyst
  • Patent Attorneys
  • Software Engineer
  • Teacher
  • Spacecraft Project Manager
  • Defence Scientist
  • Procurement Manager

Glasgow is Scotland's biggest & most cosmopolitan city

Our campus is based right in the very heart of Glasgow. We're in the city centre, next to the Merchant City, both of which are great locations for sightseeing, shopping and socialising alongside your studies.

Life in Glasgow

Gallery of Modern Art, Royal Exchange Square.

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Apply

Start date: Sep 2022

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Contact us

PGT Admissions Team

Telephone: +44 (0)141 574 5147

Email: science-masters@strath.ac.uk

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International students

We've a large range of scholarships available to help you fund your studies. Check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

Have you considered?

We've a range of postgraduate taught and Masters courses similar to this one which may also be of interest.