Physics MSc (by Research)


Fact file

MSc (by Research) Physics
1 year full-time
Entry requirements
Other requirements
6.5 (no less than 6.0 in any element)

If these grades are not met, English preparatory courses are available
Start date
Tuition fees
You can find fee information on our fees table.


A one-year course with taught modules from either nanoscience, year 3 or 4 four courses, or from courses run by other schools/departments.
Read full overview
A one year course with a total of 180 credits. Of these 20-60 credits are taught modules taken from either MSc Nanoscience, or from year 3 or year 4 courses, or from courses run by other schools and departments. The remaining 120-160 credits is a research dissertation.

Course details

For all Masters degrees there is a possibility during the year to transfer to a PhD.

Requirement:  2:2 Honours Degree or equivalent in Physics or a related subject.



For information on our modules, please see the Module Catalogue.  

The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.



PhD Studentships Offered by the School for Home/EU Students

Every year the School of Physics & Astronomy is awarded approximately 20 studentships by the Research Councils and the University that pay the home/EU fees and a stipend of £13,590 (2012/2013). These are allocated to the best students who apply to do a PhD.

Government loans for masters courses

The Government offers postgraduate student loans of up to £10,609 for students studying a taught or research masters course. Applicants must ordinarily live in England or the EU. Student loans are also available for students from Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.

International and EU students

Masters scholarships are available for international 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 your course application is submitted in good time.

Information and advice on funding your degree, living costs and working while you study is available on our website, as well as country-specific resources.

Some Scholarships are available to international students.

  • If you are an international student, the University guarantees that if you accept a place and register here, you will pay the same fee for each year of your programme.
  • A 10% alumni scholarship is available for international postgraduate students.


Physics underpins most science and technology, but the range of careers entered by physics and astronomy graduates is far wider than even this fact would suggest. Many employers see a physics graduate as someone who has demonstrated an ability to work through a demanding course of study and who will have acquired a variety of technical and other transferable skills. The range of careers enjoyed by our graduates and their success in finding suitable positions is a measure of how many employers appreciate the value of a physics degree. This appreciation is reflected in the lucrative salaries that graduates from this School can typically expect, even at the start of their careers. In fact, a report by Pricewaterhouse Coopers shows that Physics, Chemistry and Engineering graduates are the highest paid after Medicine and Law graduates.

Over 50% of our graduates go directly into professional employment. The range of jobs that they take up is very wide, including software engineering, management consultancy, financial services, and research and development in high technology based industries. 30% of our graduates take higher degrees (20% do PhDs, the others various MSc conversion courses and the PGCE) and of the remainder, nearly 10% opt to take a year off after graduation to do voluntary service or simply to travel.

Please click here to view details of Graduate Destinations.

Average starting salary and career progression

In 2016, 90.9% of postgraduates in the school who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation. The average starting salary was £28,260 with the highest being £30,000.*

*Known destinations of full-time home higher degree postgraduates 2015/16. Salaries are calculated based on those in full-time paid employment within the UK.

Career Prospects and Employability

The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers* and can offer you a head-start when it comes to your career.

Those who take up a postgraduate research opportunity with us will not only receive support in terms of close contact with supervisors and specific training related to your area of research, you will also benefit from dedicated careers advice from our Careers and Employability Service. Individual guidance appointments, career management training programme, access to resources and invitations to events including skills workshops and recruitment fairs are just some of the ways in which they can help you develop your full potential, whether you choose to continue within an academic setting or are looking at options outside of academia.

The Graduate Market 2013-2016, High Fliers Research.

Explore it - Virtual Nottingham

This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.

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