Physics (research placement) MPhys

Key information

Duration:
4 years full time
UCAS code:
F302
Start date:
September 2025
  • 7th in the UK for our research environment in Physics in REF 2021 (Times Higher Education)

From subatomic particles to entire galaxies, physics allows us to explore the big questions, while having a significant impact on our daily lives.

This course is for you if you’re an academic high-flyer. It offers you the exciting opportunity to work on a cutting-edge research project here at Sussex each summer and get funding to cover your living expenses during that time. 

At Sussex, you’ll explore fascinating subjects, learning from world-leading researchers. Their work includes developing next-generation quantum computers, investigating quantum gravity and black holes, searching for fundamental particles at CERN and studying our universe from the Big Bang to modern times. You could be working with researchers who are part of a team using NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope. You’ll join our experts and immerse yourself in world-class research.

You’ll use the latest equipment and state-of-the-art laboratories, and gain a broad understanding of the core principles of physics. Options enable you to specialise in areas you find most fascinating. You’ll apply this knowledge across a range of areas including:

  • astrophysics
  • quantum physics
  • particle physics
  • materials science
  • mathematical physics.

From sustainability to economics and modern languages, you take electives from other subjects to open your mind to other disciplines and tailor your degree to your interests. In your integrated Masters year, you’ll develop advanced physical skills through working with one of the expert research groups in our Department

Our department is a friendly hive of activity. You’ll join a close-knit community. Our open-door policy means that whatever you need, we’ll be there to support you.

During your research placement and integrated Masters year, you’ll develop new research skills – particularly relevant if you're interested in going on to a research career at universities or in industry.

Accreditation

  • Accredited by the Institute of Physics (IOP) for the purpose of fully meeting the educational requirement for Chartered Physicist. Find out more

We understand that deciding where and what to study is a very important decision. We’ll make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities described in this prospectus. However, if we need to make material changes, for example due to government or regulatory requirements, or unanticipated staff changes, we’ll let you know as soon as possible.

MPhys or BSc?

We also offer this course without the research placements, as five-year MPhys with an industrial placement year, as a four-year BSc with an industrial placement year, or as a three-year BSc. Find out about the benefits of an integrated Masters year.

Working in the Emergent Photonics Laboratory, characterising the world’s first series of novel inks for generating Terahertz radiation, I’ve experienced first-hand how physics research is really done.Samuel Morgan
Physics (research placement) MPhys graduate

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Entry requirements

Entry requirements for this course are currently under review – please check back in early March 2024.

Modules

This is a single-honours course, allowing you to focus in depth on your core subject.

Find out about our types of undergraduate degrees, their structure, modules and credits

Core modules

Core modules are taken by all students on the course. They give you a solid grounding in your chosen subject and prepare you to explore the topics that interest you most.

Options

Alongside your core modules, you can choose options to broaden your horizons and tailor your course to your interests. This list gives you a flavour of our options, which are kept under review and may change, for example in response to student feedback or the latest research.

While it’s our aim for students to take their preferred combinations of options, this can’t be guaranteed and will be subject to timetabling. Options may be grouped and if so, students will be able to choose a set number of options from the selection available in any particular group.

Explore modules from other subjects as part of your course

At Sussex, you can choose to customise your course to build the sort of degree that will give you the knowledge, skills and experience that could take you in any direction you choose.

As part of this degree, you explore subjects that are different to your course through electives and pathways that complement your main subject. Exploring different disciplines in four electives across Years 1 and 2 helps enrich your learning experience.

Discover our electives and pathways

Engineering and physics principles drive the green energy transition. In our Sustainable Energy elective, I’m excited to work with you to explore all the available information – and discuss your ideas.Professor Simon Peeters
Professor of Physics

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2024/25. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.

We’ll do our best to provide as much optional choice as we can, but timetabling constraints mean it may not be possible to take some module combinations. The structure of a small number of courses means that the order of modules or the streams you choose may determine whether modules are core or optional. This means that your core modules or options may differ from what’s shown here.

Check back in January 2025 for more details of the modules running in the academic year 2025/26.

Core modules

Core modules are taken by all students on the course. They give you a solid grounding in your chosen subject and prepare you to explore the topics that interest you most.

Options

Alongside your core modules, you can choose options to broaden your horizons and tailor your course to your interests. This list gives you a flavour of our options, which are kept under review and may change, for example in response to student feedback or the latest research.

While it’s our aim for students to take their preferred combinations of options, this can’t be guaranteed and will be subject to timetabling. Options may be grouped and if so, students will be able to choose a set number of options from the selection available in any particular group.

Explore modules from other subjects as part of your course

At Sussex, you can choose to customise your course to build the sort of degree that will give you the knowledge, skills and experience that could take you in any direction you choose.

As part of this degree, you explore subjects that are different to your course through electives and pathways that complement your main subject. Exploring different disciplines in four electives across Years 1 and 2 helps enrich your learning experience.

Discover our electives and pathways

Engineering and physics principles drive the green energy transition. In our Sustainable Energy elective, I’m excited to work with you to explore all the available information – and discuss your ideas.Professor Simon Peeters
Professor of Physics

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2024/25. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.

We’ll do our best to provide as much optional choice as we can, but timetabling constraints mean it may not be possible to take some module combinations. The structure of a small number of courses means that the order of modules or the streams you choose may determine whether modules are core or optional. This means that your core modules or options may differ from what’s shown here.

Check back in January 2025 for more details of the modules running in the academic year 2025/26.

Core modules

Core modules are taken by all students on the course. They give you a solid grounding in your chosen subject and prepare you to explore the topics that interest you most.

Options

Alongside your core modules, you can choose options to broaden your horizons and tailor your course to your interests. This list gives you a flavour of our options, which are kept under review and may change, for example in response to student feedback or the latest research.

While it’s our aim for students to take their preferred combinations of options, this can’t be guaranteed and will be subject to timetabling. Options may be grouped and if so, students will be able to choose a set number of options from the selection available in any particular group.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2024/25. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.

We’ll do our best to provide as much optional choice as we can, but timetabling constraints mean it may not be possible to take some module combinations. The structure of a small number of courses means that the order of modules or the streams you choose may determine whether modules are core or optional. This means that your core modules or options may differ from what’s shown here.

Check back in January 2025 for more details of the modules running in the academic year 2025/26.

Core modules

Core modules are taken by all students on the course. They give you a solid grounding in your chosen subject and prepare you to explore the topics that interest you most.

Options

Alongside your core modules, you can choose options to broaden your horizons and tailor your course to your interests. This list gives you a flavour of our options, which are kept under review and may change, for example in response to student feedback or the latest research.

While it’s our aim for students to take their preferred combinations of options, this can’t be guaranteed and will be subject to timetabling. Options may be grouped and if so, students will be able to choose a set number of options from the selection available in any particular group.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2024/25. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.

We’ll do our best to provide as much optional choice as we can, but timetabling constraints mean it may not be possible to take some module combinations. The structure of a small number of courses means that the order of modules or the streams you choose may determine whether modules are core or optional. This means that your core modules or options may differ from what’s shown here.

Check back in January 2025 for more details of the modules running in the academic year 2025/26.

Research placements (each summer throughout this degree)

Our MPhys course with a research placement is a stimulating intellectual challenge for well-qualified students, providing unique training for a future research career. You can apply to work on a research problem with a member of faculty in the Department of Physics and Astronomy each summer before Years 2, 3 and 4.

During the summer research placements, you receive funding to cover your living expenses. 

Find out more about our research placements and summer projects at Department of Physics and Astronomy: Undergraduate Research

In the summer, you work in a research group or alongside a supervisor on a project where you can learn new skills and techniques that other undergraduates would never get to do, and contribute to science at the same time.”Daniel Pollard
Physics (research placement) MPhys 

Find out more about studying Physics at Sussex, including astrophysics, theoretical physics and particle physics

TEF 2023 silver

Silver

The student experience and student outcomes are typically very high quality.
This rating was awarded in 2023, for four years.
(Teaching Excellence Framework 2023)

Find out more about our approach to teaching and supporting you to thrive

Our staff

I work on the ATLAS experiment at the CERN’s Large Hadron Collider, seeking answers to fundamental questions such as ‘What is the nature of dark matter?Professor Antonella De Santo
Professor of Physics

Fees

Fees are not yet set for the academic year 2025/26 – please check back in September 2024. Note that your fees, once they’re set, may be subject to an increase on an annual basis.

Find out about typical living costs for studying at Sussex

Find out about our terms and conditions

Scholarships

Details of our scholarships are not yet set for entry in the academic year 2025/26.

Careers

We are a core part of the SEPnet (South East Physics Network) consortium, which gives us links to universities and industries across the region. 

On your course, you’ll develop versatile and transferable skills. This prepares you for finding jobs in industry or academia. Many of our graduates go on to postgraduate research and PhD study. Others find graduate jobs in a diverse range of fields, including:

  • aerospace
  • consulting
  • geophysics
  • teaching
  • the scientific Civil Service.
During your course, you’ll get dedicated careers and CV advice. With careers fairs, forums and a dedicated careers officer, we support your career development from day one. You’ll have opportunities to meet potential employers.
 
You’ll have a wide range of paid work opportunities within the Department – from teaching and research opportunities in the summer, to outreach roles throughout the year.

Graduate destinations

Recent Physics and Astronomy graduates have started their careers as:

  • SAP applications consultant at Capgemini
  • geophysicist at CGG
  • graduate diagnostic physicist at Diamond Light Source.

Some of our graduates have also gone on to study for a postgraduate qualification (for example a PhD, MSc or PGCE).

(Department of Physics and Astronomy careers database)

Working while you study

Our Careers and Entrepreneurship team can help you find part-time work while you study. Find out more about career development and part-time work

My job involves a lot of data analysis and research into ATLAS Supersymmetry. The research placement gave me a real idea of what it is like to do research as a job.”Emma Kuwertz
Research Fellow at CERN
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