BSc Physics with Particle Physics and Cosmology F3F5

Course Overview

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Physicists seek to answer the big questions: Can the conditions that existed a few billionths of a second after the Big bang be recreated in the lab? How do fundamental constituents of matter such as quarks and leptons interact? How did the Universe begin? And can we understand what space and time are made of?

Key Features

  • Internationally Leading Research - TOP in the UK for Research Intensity (Complete University Guide 2016)
  • 100% of our students say the course is intellectually stimulating (National Student Survey 2015)
  • Dedicated facilities - a recent £4.2m investment has been made in a suite of state-of-the-art teaching laboratories and equipment to enhance the learning environment
  • Teaching experience - optional 3rd year placement with an emphasis on teaching physics, encouraging the development of transferable skills following initial training and mentoring
  • Portfolio of degree schemes designed to reflect cutting-edge research developments
  • Summer studentship and project opportunities at CERN Particle Physics Laboratory
  • Learning in the medium of Welsh - the department currently offers five optional modules that support learning in the medium of Welsh
  • Degree recognition - all of our degrees are accredited by the Institute of Physics
  • More flexibility - the common structure of our first year allows students to transfer between degree programmes
  • Physics-specific careers guidance - our undergraduates get progress-targeted advice and training to allow them to make the most of their degree
  • Exceptional project supervision - students can experience working in a research group as part of their final year project
  • Small-group teaching - students work in pairs and small groups in tutorials, problem classes, group projects and teaching laboratories, enhancing their communication and networking skills
  • The compact and friendly campus offers a superb seafront location close to the magnificent Gower Peninsula


Disclaimer: Module selection options may change.

Year 1 (Level 4)

Year 2 (Level 5)

Year 3 (Level 6)


  • Excellent teaching - we received the government's highest grade in a recent assessment - the only one in Wales.
  • International leading research in experimental and theoretical physics, with 90% of our research classes as excellent or internationally-leading. Together with our "Excellent" Teaching award, this makes us the highest rated Physics Department in Wales.
  • Students gain unique insights into cutting edge areas of research, including superconductivity, nanotechnology, superstring theory and antimatter.
  • A flexible modular course structure, allowing for transfers between different schemes up until the start of the 3rd year, with the final year of our MPhys programmes involving specialised courses and a full semester working on a cutting edge research project, including the possibility of carrying this out at CERN.
  • Research projects in areas including cold matter, lasers and optics, antimatter, nanoscale technology, all with expert supervision.
  • A wide range of entrance scholarships and bursaries available.
  • Very friendly and caring Department in a traditional University.
  • All successful applicants who make Swansea their first choice are guaranteed University Accommodation for their first year.
  • The compact and friendly campus offers a superb seafront location close to the magnificent Gower Peninsula.
  • Wide choice of career options and good graduate earnings potential!

Entry Requirements

A levels: grades AAB-BBB to include Maths and Physics. 

Welsh Baccalaureate: Pass acceptable as equivalent to an A grade A level.

BTEC: DDM plus A-level grade A in Physics. Applicants will also be expected to demonstrate mathematics equivalent to A-level grade B or above potentially during interview.

Scottish Highers: ABBBC to include B in Mathematics.

International Baccalaureate – 34-32 to include at least 6 in HL Mathematics and 5 in HL Physics.

IELTS 6.0 (with a minimum of 5.5 in each component) or equivalent English test.

Access to HE (Science) – Pass with Distinction (24 Distinctions to include 3 in Mathematics and 3 in Physics, plus 15 merits at Level 3).

All applications will be considered on an individual basis, and we will look at the whole application when deciding whether to make an offer of a place, including: the balance, nature and quality of A-level, AS and GCSE subjects (or equivalent); personal statement and referee’s comments.

International students:  please visit our International pages for information on entry requirements for your country:  Africa, South Asia, East Asia, Europe and Russia, Middle East, North America, South America, South East Asia.  If your country is not listed within these regions, please contact

How To Apply

All applications for full-time undergraduate degrees must be made through UCAS. Further information is available on the UCAS website.

For UK applicants, please apply online at

For International students, please click here

Tuition Fees

Annual tuition fees for entry in the academic year 2016/17 are as follows:

UK/EU International
BSc (Hons) Full-time £9,000 £16,650

Tuition fees for years of study after your first year are subject to an increase of 3% for International students and at the capped fee rate as set by the UK Government for UK/EU students.

You can find further information on fees and how to pay on our tuition fees page.

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit the University's scholarships and bursaries page.

Current students: You can find further information of your fee costs on our tuition fees page.

Additional Costs

The tuition fees do not cover the costs of purchasing books or stationery, printing, thesis binding or photocopying costs.

There are no mandatory additional costs specified for this course.

International Entry Requirements

International students:  please visit our International pages for information on entry requirements for your country:  Africa, South Asia, East Asia, Europe and Russia, Middle East, North America, South America, South East Asia.  If your country is not listed within these regions, please contact

Teaching and assessment

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, laboratory work, examples classes and weekly small group classes.

You will be assessed through a variety of methods, laboratory work and research projects.

Student profiles

"I joined the Department in the Foundation Year and this course gave me the chance to show my true potential and I graduated with a 2(i). I have nothing but positive things to say about the lecturers - they were always on hand to further explain concepts that I struggled to understand during the lectures. But what impressed me most about the Department was the willingness of all members of staff, lecturers and technicians alike, to give up their time to help us students with all aspects of our degrees, including those that fall outside their specific responsibilities".

Anna Maxey, BSc Physics

Read our student profiles


The Department is well-resourced to support research. Swansea physics graduates are more fortunate than most, gaining unique insights into exciting cutting-edge areas of physics due to the specialized research interests of all the teaching staff. This combined with a great staff-student ratio enables individual supervision in advanced final year research projects. Projects range from superconductivity and nano-technology to superstring theory and anti-matter. The success of this programme is apparent in the large proportion of our MPhys students who seek to continue with postgraduate programmes in research.

Specialist equipment includes:

a low-energy positron beam with a highfield superconducting magnet for the study of positronium

a number of CW and pulsed laser systems

scanning tunnelling electron and nearfield optical microscopes

a Raman microscope

a 72 CPU parallel cluster

access to the IBM-built ‘Blue C’ Supercomputer at Swansea University and is part of the shared use of the teraflop QCDOC facility based in Edinburgh

We are currently engaged in a £1.8million spend on state-of-the-art teaching spaces, including IT facilities, laboratories and flexible teaching spaces.

Find out more about the facilities used by Physics students at Swansea University.


Physics graduates have a wide range of job opportunities.  Employers include academic institutions, government research organisations and industry, including aerospace and defence, education, energy, engineering, instrumentation, manufacturing, oil and gas, science, communication, space exploration and telecommunications. Many physics graduates pursue a career outside physics, ie in consultancy, IT, the environmental industry, financial services, the legal sector, transport and utilities.

Every year we survey our recent graduates to ascertain their employment status.  The data is more commonly known as the Graduate Destinations Survey and is reported to HESA (the Higher Education Statistics Authority).  Here are some examples of job titles from the recent survey:

  • Research Associate (University College London)
  • Demand Forecaster (First Utility)
  • Graduate Manager (Lloyds Banking Group)
  • Trainee Clinical Scientist (The Christie NHS Foundation Trust)
  • Electromagnetic Signature Analyst (Quinetiq)
  • Recruitment Consultant (M D L Howarth Ltd)
  • Cost Draftsman (Asons Solicitors)
  • Trainee (FDM Group)

Find out more about employability


The results of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 show that over 80% of the research outputs from both the experimental and theoretical groups were judged to be world-leading or internationally excellent.

Research groups include:

AMQP Group

The Atomic, Molecular and Quantum Physics Group comprises academic staff, postdoctoral officers and postgraduate research students. Its work is supported by grants from EPSRC, the EU, The Royal Society, the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales and various industrial and government sources. There are two main fields of research: Atomic, Molecular and Laser Physics and Nanoscale Physics.

PPT Group

The Particle Physics Theory Group has fourteen members of staff, in addition to postdoctoral officers and research students. It is the fourth largest particle physics theory group in the UK, and is supported mainly by STFC, but also has grants from EPSRC, the EU, Royal Society and Leverhulme Trust. The group recently expanded by hiring two theoretical cosmologists (Ivonne Zavala and Gianmassimo Tasinato). There are five main fields of research: Quantum Field Theory, Strings, Lattice Field Theory, Beyond the Standard Model Physics and Theoretical Cosmology.

Find out more


Welcome to new and returning students.

You will find information regarding Departmental Enrolment and Induction events, along with enrolment instructions here.

Welsh-medium provision for students

In the Physics Department a variety of modules can be studied with a Welsh medium component. For more information, please contact Dr Aled Isaac.