MSc/PgDip Nanoscience

Key facts

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

  • Placement: Opportunities for relevant industrial placements

Study with us

  • master state-of-the-art research and methods in nanoscience in an interdisciplinary course connecting physics and chemistry 
  • become equipped for a research-based career in industry or to progress to a PhD
  • provides a comprehensive overview of state-of-the-art research in nanoscience, along with the opportunity to develop the skills necessary for this emerging area
  • mainly designed to equip you for a research-based career in industry, but it can also serve as a way of progressing towards a PhD

How could the Covid-19 pandemic affect my studies?

Covid-19: information & FAQs
Back to course

Why this course?

This course explores the frontiers of science on the nanoscale. It provides a strong grounding in basic nanoscience before progressing to advanced topics.

Taught classes have been developed from the many years of nanoscience research at the University in areas such as:

  • nanoscale imaging
  • nanoparticle fabrication and functionalisation
  • chemical physics
  • computational modelling of the nanoworld

Who’s the course suitable for?

The course will be of interest to physical science graduates looking to work in the field of nanoscience. It’s also suitable for those with an industrial background as a further training opportunity and a way of gaining insights into topics at the forefront of academic research.

Close up of microscope and slide

THE Awards 2019: UK University of the Year Winner

Interested in studying a postgraduate degree within Science?

The Faculty of Science Admissions team are holding a virtual drop-in session for the MSc programmes on Wednesday 20 January between 10 and 4 between 10am and 4pm.

If you wish to discuss anything relating to the application process, potential funding opportunities, etc please register using the link below.

Register for event

What you’ll study

Two semesters of formal teaching are followed by a three-month intensive project.

Research project

Following the taught classes, you’ll undertake a research-intensive project in a relevant nanoscience topic. Projects take place primarily in research labs located in the University’s physical science departments. There are also opportunities for relevant industrial placements.


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


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

  • photophysics lab with world-leading instrumentation for fluorescence lifetime, spectra, microscopy, imaging and sensing
  • a scanning electron microscopy suite for analysis of hard and soft matter
  • the Ultrafast Chemical Physics lab with state-of-the-art femtosecond laser systems for multi-dimensional IR spectroscopy
  • access to top-of-the-range facilities for high-performance computing
  • industry standard cleanroom in the Institute of Photonics
Go back

Course content

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.

Project Training

This course develops your transferable skills (communication skills, literature survey) in preparation for the project undertaken on the course.

It also helps you in developing an understanding of the management of projects in an industrial setting and preparation for successful working in technological industries.


You'll undertake a cutting edge research project in either one of the research groups of the Department of Physics or with collaborating departments and institutions (Chemistry, Institute of Photonics, Fraunhofer Centre for Applied Photonics, Electronic & Electrical Engineering, Centre for Biophotonics).

Introductionary 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.

Conversion Course

This provides participants with a strong knowledge base from which to tackle the rest of the syllabus.

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.

Advanced Nanoscience 3: Chemical & Biomedical Nanoscience

Aspects of chemical and biomedical nanoscience including nano-functionalisation and sensing and detection methods.

Back to course

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

Minimum second-class Honours degree, or international equivalent, in physics or a related subject, eg Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Engineering Physics, Material Science, Nanoscience, Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Biology.

Applicants from an engineering or life science discipline need to have had sufficient exposure to quantum mechanics and solid state physics, eg by semiconductor technology courses, or need to demonstrate that they can acquire the necessary background. Contact us about your circumstances 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. Please see ELTD for full details.

As a university, we now accept many more English language tests in addition to 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 will 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.

Back to course

Fees & funding

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

Go back


England, Wales & Northern Ireland




Available scholarships

Take a look at our scholarships search for funding opportunities.

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?

Go back

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.

Go back

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.

Go back

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.

Go back

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.

Go back

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.

Back to course


What kind of jobs do Strathclyde Physics graduates get?

To answer this question we contacted some of our Physics graduates from all courses to find out what jobs they have. They are working across the world in a number of different roles including:

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

Success story: Iain Neil

Iain Neil graduated from Strathclyde in Applied Physics in 1977 and is an optical consultant, specialising in the design of zoom lenses for the film industry. He has received a record 12 Scientific and Technical Academy Awards, the most for any living person.

Glasgow is Scotland's biggest & most cosmopolitan city

Our campus is based in the very heart of Glasgow, Scotland's largest city. National Geographic named Glasgow as one of its 'Best of the World' destinations, while Rough Guide readers have voted Glasgow the world’s friendliest city! And Time Out named Glasgow in the top ten best cities in the world - we couldn't agree more!

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.

Find out what some of our students think about studying in Glasgow!

Find out all about life in Glasgow
Back to course



Qualification: PG Diploma
Start Date: Sep 2021
Mode of Attendance: full-time


Qualification: MSc
Start Date: Sep 2021
Mode of Attendance: full-time

Back to course

Contact us

PGT Admissions Team

Telephone: +44 (0)141 574 5147


Have you considered?

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