Undergraduate 

Physics with Astrophysics BSc/MSci

In this degree programme the study of physics is particularly focused on astrophysical phenomena: from stars and planets to galaxies and cosmology.

Astrophysics provides a natural laboratory in which to explore the laws of physics, and in certain astrophysical objects: such as pulsars, quasars and black holes; to test those laws under extreme conditions. Astronomy lectures are complemented by our observatory, planetarium and telescope facilities.

  • September start
  • Session dates
  • Physics with Astrophysics BSc (Hons): F3F5 4 year degree
  • Physics with Astrophysics MSci: F3FM 5 year degree

Why study Physics with Astrophysics?

  • Physics & Astronomy at Glasgow is ranked 2nd in Scotland and 12th in the UK (Complete University Guide 2020)
  • This degree programme is accredited by the Institute of Physics
  • Lectures are complemented by our observatory, planetarium and telescope facilities at our Garscube Campus
  • Many of our staff play leading roles in major international research projects, such as the Large Hadron Collider at CERN and the gravitational wave observatory LIGO
  • The school has two active societies - PhySoc and AstroSoc - run by students, for students

Programme structure

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Year 1

Core courses:

You will gain a basic understanding of the main topics in theoretical physics and will be introduced to the methods of experimental physics, thereby providing a solid foundation for further study in physics.

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Year 2

Core courses:

You will learn more specialised experimental techniques and expand your knowledge of modern physics research. You will also be introduced to the foundations of astrophysics, covering topics including the physics of our solar system, the origin of stars and galaxies, and the evolution of the universe.

You will also study other subjects in years 1 and 2 : see Flexible degrees.

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Year 3

The following courses run on alternate years:

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Year 4

The following courses run on alternate years:

 If you progress to Honours (years 3 and 4) you will continue to study core topics in greater depth but will also study specialist subjects of your choice in depth and will undertake project work, often within a world-leading research group.

The main astrophysics components of the Honours programme include:

  • stellar structure and evolution
  • high-energy astrophysics
  • galaxies and cosmology
  • instruments for optical and radio telescopes
  • exploring planetary systems

There is an opportunity to take an MSci degree which explores physics and astrophysics topics in greater depth. In the final year of the MSci degree you will carry out an individually supervised project working at the cutting edge of international research. The MSci aims to foster the development of critical judgement and independent scientific work, and to prepare you for professional leadership in your chosen field.

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Programme alteration or discontinuation
The University of Glasgow endeavours to run all programmes as advertised. In exceptional circumstances, however, the University may withdraw or alter a programme. For more information, please see: Student contract.

Our international links

You will have the opportunity to study abroad at one of our partner universities as part of your degree. This won’t add any extra time to your studies; see Study abroad.

Entry requirements

for entry in 2021

Summary of entry requirements for Physics with Astrophysics

SQA Higher Entry Requirements

  • BBBB at S5 will be considered. Typically S6 entrants will have AAAAA at Higher. B at Advanced Higher is equivalent to A at Higher.
  • Additional requirements: Higher Mathematics and Physics.

SQA Higher Adjusted Entry Requirements* (by end of S6)

  • AABB – BBBB
  • Additional requirements: Higher Mathematics and Physics. Successful completion of Top-Up or one of our Summer Schools.

* See Access Glasgow for eligibility.

A-level Standard Entry Requirements

  • AAB – BBB
  • Additional requirements: A-level Mathematics and Physics.

IB Standard Entry Requirements

  • 36 (6, 6, 5 HL) – 32 (6, 5, 5 HL)
  • Additional requirements: HL Mathematics and Physics.

2021 Admissions Policy and further information about entry requirements

Glasgow International College

International students with academic qualifications below those required should contact our partner institution, Glasgow International College, who offer a range of foundation certificates.

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

English language requirements

Important information for entry in Autumn 2020 and January 2021

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training):

  • overall score 6.5
  • no sub-test less than 6.0
  • or equivalent scores in another recognised qualification (see below)

Common equivalent English language qualifications:

  • ibTOEFL*: 90; no sub-test less than: Reading: 20; Listening: 19; Speaking: 19; Writing: 23
  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall: no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall: no sub-test less than 169
  • PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59
  • IGCSE: English as a First Language (0500/0522): C in Reading and Writing, plus 1 in Listening, 2 in Speaking, where applicable. All four components (listening, writing, speaking, reading) must be examined and detailed on results slip
  • IGCSE: English as a Second Language (0510/0511): A in Reading and Writing, plus A in Listening, 2/B in Speaking, where applicable. All four components (listening, writing, speaking, reading) must be examined and detailed on results slip
  • Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII at Distinction with Distinction in all sub-tests

* Please note that TOEFL is still acceptable for admission to this programme for both home/EU and international students.

For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use TOEFL to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level courses. We therefore still accept TOEFL tests taken in the last two years for admission to this programme.

Pre-sessional courses
The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:

FAQs

What do I do if...

my language qualifications are below the requirements?

The University's School of Modern Languages and Cultures offers a range of Pre-Sessional Courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching; see Links.

my language qualifications are not listed here?

Please contact External Relations

If you require a Tier 4 student visa, your qualification must be one of the secure English language tests accepted by UK Border Agency:


Visa requirements and proof of English language level

It is a visa requirement to provide information on your level of English based on an internationally recognised and secure English language test. All test reports must be no more than 2 years old. A list of these can be found on the UK Border Agency website. If you have never taken one of these tests before, you can get an initial idea of your level by using the Common European Framework self-assessment grid which gives you a level for each skill (e.g. listening B1/writing B2 etc.) However, please note that this is not a secure English language test and it is not sufficient evidence of your level of English for visa requirements.

For further information about English language, please see School of Modern Languages and Cultures: English for Academic Study.


Career prospects

The scientific knowledge and mathematical and analytical skills you acquire will equip you to work across a wide range of industries including aerospace, electronics, semiconductors, petroleum, communications, computing, medical physics, education, commerce and the Civil Service.

Accreditation

All programmes containing physics are fully accredited by the Institute of Physics.

Degrees and UCAS codes

When applying you will need to know the UCAS code for the subject or subject-combination that you wish to apply to:

BSc (Hons)

Physics with Astrophysics: F3F5 (4 years)
KIS

MSci

Physics with Astrophysics: F3FM (5 years)
KIS

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

How and when you pay tuition fees depends on where you’re from: see Tuition fees for details.

Scholarships

The University is committed to supporting students and rewarding academic excellence. That's why we've invested more than £1m in additional scholarship funding in recent years.

College of Science and Engineering Deans' Award

The College of Science and Engineering is offering ten scholarships worth £10,000 each towards tuition fees for academically excellent students wishing to study an Undergraduate or Postgraduate Taught programme within the College’s programme portfolio.

RUK Access Bursary 2020 Entry

The bursary supports talented students who might not be able to take a place at University for reasons of financial hardship. It is available to new entrant full-time, undergraduate students of the University of Glasgow who are fully registered for Session 2020/21, as being domiciled in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and paying annual tuition fees of £9,250 per annum.

RUK Excellence Scholarship 2020

The RUK Excellence Scholarship of £1,000 for each year of study will be awarded to first degree entrants who have attained AAA or better in one sitting at A Level (or equivalent). 

James McCune Smith Scholarship

The University of Glasgow has 30 undergraduate scholarships available for students Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) students. The scholarship supports students who could face financial difficulties taking up their place to study at the University. The value of the scholarship is £2,000, paid in instalments for the first year of undergraduate study. The scholarship is open to new applicants to the University. Current students who have previously been in receipt of the award may reapply, however, preference will be given to applicants entering their first year of study.

Beaconhouse Schools

The University of Glasgow offer a 15% discount on the first year of tuition fee to students from Beaconhouse Schools and who enrol on an undergraduate programme at the University of Glasgow. The discount does not apply to Veterinary Medicine, Medicine and Dentistry programmes.

Undergraduate Talent Scholarships

The University of Glasgow awards c.50 undergraduate Talent Scholarships each academic year to support students who could face financial difficulties in taking up their place to study at the University. The value of each scholarship is typically £1,500 p.a. for each year of the degree programme, subject to satisfactory progress. Talent Scholarships are available to students entering any of the University's Colleges.

Dental School students are eligible for a Talent Scholarship in their first year of study only. They are eligible for the NHS Dental Student Support Grant in the following years.

Humanitarian Scholarships

The University of Glasgow is offering four scholarships (one per college) for applicants to the University who are staying in the UK on humanitarian grounds and are facing challenges in progressing onto Higher Education. The scholarship is open to prospective undergraduate and postgraduate taught students of the University of Glasgow applying for entry in 2021/22. The scholarship meets the full cost of tuition fees for the duration of your programme as well providing an additional £5,000 per year stipend, if the eligibility criteria for university accommodation is met this will also be provided for the duration of your degree. For more information on the accommodation criteria, please see the Accommodation Services section on the website.

We are also offering eight scholarships to students who hold refugee status. This scholarship is awarded as a £2,500 stipend towards study costs, per year of study.

The scholarships above are specific to this programme. For more funding opportunities search the scholarships database

How to apply

 

Full-time students must apply through the Universities & Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). 

International students to Arts, Engineering, Law, Nursing, Science, and Social Sciences can also apply using The Common Application: however, if applying to more than one UK university, we recommend using UCAS. Applications to Dentistry, Education, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine must be made through UCAS.

Application deadlines

  • 15 October: if including Dentistry, Medicine, Veterinary Medicine or also applying to Oxford or Cambridge
  • 15 January: all other UK/EU applicants (unless otherwise stated on the UCAS website)
  • 30 June: international (non-EU) students

We do not usually accept any applications after these deadlines.

It's your responsibility to ensure the accuracy of your application before submission. Requests to correct application content, change degree programme or change college of entry, will not be accepted after these deadlines. This policy is in place to ensure fairness and consistency to all applicants, and no exceptions will be made.

ATAS: Academic Technology Approval Scheme

Please note that this programmes in this subject at Masters level require ATAS. If you require a visa to study in the UK then you will need to apply for an ATAS certificate before applying for your visa or extension of stay, allowing at least four weeks (20 working days) in order to obtain it.

The Academic Technology Approval Scheme (ATAS) was introduced on 1 November 2007. It is used to help stop the spread of knowledge and skills that could be used in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) and their means of delivery. This is in common with other governments around the world.

The ATAS is designed to ensure that people who are applying to study certain sensitive subjects in the UK do not have links to WMD programmes.


How to apply for Advanced Entry

Apply for year 2 (Y2) on your UCAS application. If the specific subject is unavailable for Advanced Entry or your application for year 2 entry is unsuccessful, you will be automatically considered for year 1 entry. You do not have to submit a separate UCAS application.

Apply via UCAS

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Physics students in work / study

Discover Uni, January 2020
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PROFESSIONALLY ACCREDITED

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STUDY ABROAD

Complete University Guide

UK top 15: Complete University Guide [Physics & Astronomy]

ShanghaiRanking of World Universities

World top 100: ShanghaiRanking's Global [Physics]