The course will begin with introductory material on general relativity and its mathematical language of differential geometry. You will then continue with more advanced modules with applications to the study of black holes, cosmology and aspects of general relativity related to string theory.
There is a year-long introduction to quantum field theory which introduces the famous Feynman diagrams of particle physics in a systematic way, and studies aspects of modern particle physics. There is also an introduction to the concepts of quantum information theory.
The course assumes you have a familiarity with quantum mechanics and special relativity at an introductory level. No prior knowledge of general relativity is assumed.
This module will develop the ideas behind General Relativity (GR) to an advanced level. You will explore solutions to these equations including black holes and cosmological solutions.
You will also have the opportunity to study more advanced topics including modified gravity models (eg models with extra dimensions) that are at the forefront of current research.
General relativity predicts the existence of black holes which are regions of space-time into which objects can be sent but from which no classical objects can escape. This module develops techniques to systematically study black holes and their properties, including horizons and singularities. Astrophysical processes involving black holes are discussed, and there is a brief introduction to black hole radiation discovered by Hawking.
The modern study of general relativity requires familiarity with a number of tools of differential geometry, including manifolds, symmetries, Lie Groups, differentiation and integration on manifolds. These are introduced in this module using examples of curved space-times.
This module provides an introduction to the modern theory of gravitation: Einstein's general theory of relativity.
Topics to be covered include:
- Specifying geometry
- Special Relativity
- Equivalence principle
- General relativity
- Schwarzschild solution
- Schwarzschild black hole:
Gravity, Particles and Fields Dissertation
The dissertation is an extended piece of research related to a taught element of the course. The study will be largely self-directed, with oversight and input provided where necessary by a supervisor from the School of Mathematical Sciences or the School of Physics and Astronomy.
The topic could be based on a theoretical investigation, a review of research literature, or a combination of the two.
Introduction to Quantum Information Science
The paradigm of Quantum Information Science (QIS) is that quantum devices, made of systems such as atoms and photons, can out-perform the present-day technology in key applications ranging from computing power and communication security to precision measurements. Quantum information processing and the measurement and control of individual quantum systems are central topics in QIS, lying at the intersection of quantum mechanics with 'classical' disciplines such as information theory, probability, and statistics, computer science and control engineering.
The aim of this module is to provide an introduction to QIS, emphasising the differences and similarities between the classical and the quantum theories. After a short review of the necessary probabilistic notions, the first part introduces the operational framework of quantum theory involving the fundamental concepts of states, measurements, quantum channels, instruments. This includes some of the influential results in the field such as entanglement and quantum teleportation, Bell's theorem and the quantum no-cloning theorem. The second part covers at least two topics from quantum Markovian evolutions, quantum statistics, continuous variable systems.
This module facilitates an understanding of Friedmann models and hot big bang – encompassing the study of thermal history, freezout, relics, recombination, last scattering; dark matter candidates.
Other topics will include inflation, fluctuations from inflation, structure formation, gravitational lensing CMB anisotropies, and dark energy.
Quantum Field Theory
The aim of this module is to provide the quantum description of electrons, photons and other elementary particles, including a discussion of spin, bosons, and fermions.
Lectures will provide an introduction to functional integrals, Feynman diagrams, and the standard model of particle physics.
The above is a sample of the typical modules that we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. This course page may be updated over the duration of the course, as modules may change due to developments in the curriculum or in the research interests of staff.
Teaching methods and assessment
Modules are mainly delivered through lectures and example and/or problem classes. For the research project, you will work independently under the supervision of a member of academic staff.
The course has 180 credits of which 120 are from the taught modules and 60 are from the research project that is undertaken in the summer.
Assessment varies on the module being studied but typically you can expect:
- written exams at the end of each semester
The masters will give you the skills and knowledge to help you accelerate your career. Many graduates continue studying for a PhD whereas others will enter scientific roles.
Average starting salary and career progression
100% of postgraduates in the School of Mathematical Sciences secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £30,800, with the highest being £60,000.*
* Known destinations of full-time home postgraduates who were available for employment, 2016/17. Salaries are calculated based on the median of those in full-time paid employment within the UK.
Careers support and advice
We offer individual careers support for all postgraduate students whatever your course, mode of study or future career plans.
You can access our Careers and Employability Service during your studies and after you graduate. Expert staff will help you research career options and job vacancies, build your CV or résumé, develop your interview skills and meet employers.
More than 1,500 employers advertise graduate jobs and internships through our online vacancy service. We host regular careers fairs, including specialist fairs for different sectors.
As a student on this course, we do not anticipate any extra significant costs, alongside your tuition fees and living expenses. You should be able to access most of the books you’ll need through our libraries, though you may wish to purchase your own copies which you would need to factor into your budget.
Scholarships and bursaries
School scholarships for UoN UK alumni
For 2020/21 entry, 10% alumni scholarships may be offered to former University of Nottingham graduates who have studied at the UK campus.
Government loans for masters courses
Masters student loans of up to £10,906 are available for taught and research masters courses. Applicants must ordinarily live in the UK or EU.
International and EU students
Masters scholarships are available for international and EU students from a wide variety of countries and areas of study. You must already have an offer to study at Nottingham to apply. Please note closing dates to ensure you apply for your course with enough time.
We provide guidance on funding your degree, living costs and working while you study. You can also access specific funding opportunities, entry requirements and other resources for students from specific countries.