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Physics with Medical Applications with a Year Abroad

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Although the UCAS equal consideration date has now passed, many of our courses are still accepting applications from UK students for 2024 entry through UCAS.

The deadline for international students is 30 June 2024.

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Bachelor of Science

Bachelor of Science (BSc) is a bachelor’s degree awarded for an undergraduate programme in the sciences.

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Course overview

Physics is helping to advance medical diagnosis and treatment, helping us to live longer. This programme provides the perfect foundation for a career in medical physics, with options for a year in industry or a year abroad.

Introduction

Physics research is helping us to live longer, healthier lives. It is helping us to develop new cures for disease and new ways to quickly diagnose health problems. For example, particle beams and detectors used in physics research have led to the development of proton cancer therapies and new diagnostic imaging technologies.
Combining the study of physics and selected topics in medical applications, this programme provides skills such as numeracy, problem solving, reasoning and communication that are attractive to the general employer, and it is an excellent preparation for a career in medical physics.

In addition to core physics modules you will also take mathematics, computing and experimental physics modules in support of these studies. There is a project on a medical physics topic in year three with involvement from the local hospitals and medical research centres. Staff from these institutions will also be involved with teaching.

This programme is available with a year in industry. Year three is spent on a paid placement within an organisation in industry, broadly defined. You will be supported by the Department of Physics throughout your placement, and you will be expected to complete a reflective written account of your experience.

What you'll learn

  • Numeracy
  • Problem solving
  • Reasoning and communication
  • Core physics principles
  • Basic prinicples of lasers
  • How to understand lenses and optical instruments
  • Analytical skills
  • How to understand the interaction between theory and experiment

Accreditation

This course is accredited by the Institute of Physics.

Accreditations in detail

Teaching Excellence Framework 2023

We’re proud to announce we’ve been awarded a Gold rating for educational excellence.

Accreditations

This course is accredited by the Institute of Physics.

Course content

Discover what you'll learn, what you'll study, and how you'll be taught and assessed.

Year one

The first year starts with a one-week project to familiarise you with the staff and other students. There will be two Maths modules in each of the first two years; these are designed to provide the Mathematical skills required by Physics students.

Compulsory modules

Dynamics and Relativity (PHYS101)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

The module provides an overview of Newtonian mechanics, continuing on from A-level courses. This includes: Newton’s laws of motion in linear and rotational circumstances, gravitation and Kepler’s laws of planetary motion. The theory of Relativity is then introduced, starting from a historical context, through Einstein’s postulates, leading to the Lorentz transformations.

Thermal Physics and Properties of Matter (PHYS102)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

Einstein said in 1949 that "Thermodynamics is the only physical theory of universal content which I am convinced, within the areas of applicability of its basic concepts, will never be overthrown." In this module, different aspects of thermal physics are addressed: (i) classical thermodynamics which deals with macroscopic properties, such as pressure, volume and temperature – the underlying microscopic physics is not included; (ii) kinetic theory of gases describes the properties of gases in terms of probability distributions associated with the motions of individual molecules; and (iii) statistical mechanics which starts from a microscopic description and then employs statistical methods to derive macroscopic properties. The laws of thermodynamics are introduced and applied.

Electricity, Magnetism and Waves (PHYS103)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 2

Electricity, Magnetism and Waves lie at the heart of physics, being phenomena associated with almost every branch of physics including quantum physics, nuclear physics, condensed matter physics and accelerator physics, as well as numerous applied aspects of physics such as communications science. The course is roughly divided into two sections. The first part introduces the fundamental concepts and principles of electricity and magnetism at an elementary level and develops the integral form of Maxwell’s equations. The second part involves the study of oscillations and waves and focuses on solutions of the wave equation, the principles of superposition, and examples of wave phenomena.

Foundations of Quantum Physics (PHYS104)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 2

This module illustrates how a series of fascinating experiments, some of which physics students will carry out in their laboratory courses, led to the realisation that Newtonian mechanics does not provide an accurate description of physical reality. As is described in the module, this failure was first seen in interactions at the atomic scale and was first seen in experiments involving atoms and electrons. The module shows how Newton’s ideas were replaced by Quantum mechanics, which has been critical to explaining phenomena ranging from the photo-electric effect to the fluctuations in the energy of the Cosmic Microwave Background. The module also explains how this revolution in physicist’s thinking paved the way for developments such as the laser.

Introduction to Computational Physics (PHYS105)

Credits: 7.5 / Semester: semester 1

​ The "Introduction to computational physics" (Phys105) module is designed to introduce physics students to the use of computational techniques appropriate to the solution of physical problems. No previous computing experience is assumed. During the course of the module, students are guided through a series of structured exercises which introduce them to the Python programming language and help them acquire a range of skills including: plotting data in a variety of ways; simple Monte Carlo techniques; algorithm development; and basic symbolic manipulations. The exercises are based around the content of the first year physics modules, both encouraging students to recognise the relevance of computing to their physics studies and enabling them to develop a deeper understanding of aspects of their first year course.  

Practical Physics I (PHYS106)

Credits: 15 / Semester: whole session

​This module teaches the laboratory side of physics to complement the taught material from lectures and to introduce key concepts of experimental physics.

Mathematics for Physicists I (PHYS107)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 1

​This module aims to provide all students with a common foundation in mathematics, necessary for studying the physical sciences and maths courses in later semesters. All topics will begin "from the ground up" by revising ideas which may be familiar from A-level before building on these concepts. In particular, the basic principles of differentiation and integration will be practised, before extending to functions of more than one variable. Basic matrix manipulation will be covered as well as vector algebra and an understanding of eigenvectors and eigenvalues.

Mathematics for Physics II (PHYS108)

Credits: 15 / Semester: semester 2

This module introduces some of the mathematical techniques used in physics. For example, differential equations, PDE’s, integral vector calculus and series are discussed. The ideas are first presented in lectures and then the put into practice in problems classes, with support from demonstrators and the module lecturer. When you have finished this module, you should: Be familiar with methods for solving first and second order differential equations in one variable. Be familiar with methods for solving partial differential equations and applications. Have a basic knowledge of integral vector calculus. Have a basic understanding of Fourier series and transforms.

Introduction to Medical Physics (PHYS115)

Credits: 7.5 / Semester: semester 2

Medical Physics is a diverse field that applies many areas of physics to diagnose and treat people.  The course devolves into the physics of the human body including the loading of the skeletal system, visual and audio defects and corrective techniques and how the heart generates an electrical signal that can be measured using an electrocardiogram (ECG).  Different types of diagnostic imaging techniques using both ionising and non-ionising radiation is investigated along with therapeutic delivery and the effect radiation has on biological systems.

Programme details and modules listed are illustrative only and subject to change.

Our curriculum

The Liverpool Curriculum framework sets out our distinctive approach to education. Our teaching staff support our students to develop academic knowledge, skills, and understanding alongside our graduate attributes:

  • Digital fluency
  • Confidence
  • Global citizenship

Our curriculum is characterised by the three Liverpool Hallmarks:

  • Research-connected teaching
  • Active learning
  • Authentic assessment

All this is underpinned by our core value of inclusivity and commitment to providing a curriculum that is accessible to all students.

Course options

Studying with us means you can tailor your degree to suit you. Here's what is available on this course.

Global Opportunities

University of Liverpool students can choose from an exciting range of study placements at partner universities worldwide.

What's available on this course?

Year in China

Immerse yourself in Chinese culture on an optional additional year at Xi'an Jiaotong Liverpool University in stunning Suzhou.

  • Learn Chinese
  • Study in a bustling world heritage city
  • Improve employment prospects
  • Study Chinese culture
  • 30 minutes from Shanghai
  • Learn new skills

Read more about Year at XJTLU, China

Year in industry

Year in industry placements give you an in-depth workplace experience where you can develop your skills and apply your learning.

  • Develop key employability skills that graduate employers are looking for
  • Experience and understand workplace culture and disciple
  • Understand the relationship between academic theory and real world application
  • Begin your professional network
  • Gain industry insight and insight into potential career options.

You don't need to decide now - you can choose to add a year in industry after you've begun your degree.

To spend a year in industry, you'll need to secure a placement with an organisation. If you're unable to find a placement, you'll continue with the standard version of the course without a year in industry.

Language study

Every student at The University of Liverpool can study a language as part of, or alongside their degree. You can choose:

  • A dedicated languages degree
  • A language as a joint or major/ minor degree
  • Language modules (selected degrees)
  • Language classes alongside your studies

Read more about studying a language

Your experience

You will attend lectures, as well as working in tutorials and problem-solving workshops. Practical work is carried out in laboratories, starting with basic skills and progressing to a research project.

Your course will be delivered by the Department of Physics.

 

Virtual tour

Supporting your learning

From arrival to alumni, we’re with you all the way:

What students say...

David Turner

Physics gives you a chance to explain how the world works – from the really small atomic scale to the really large. I've really enjoyed the practicals. I've really been able to get to grips with handling the equipment and the scientific methods – and it’s good to be able to apply the things you've learnt in lectures when you’re hands on in the lab. I feel like I've learnt enough, and developed a lot of skills to be able to apply them in later life. I'm glad I came to the University of Liverpool.

, MPhys Physics

Careers and employability

A physics degree is a great starting point for a physics related career, engineering and computing careers.

Physicists are trained to solve a wide range of problems. That is why graduates have gone on to explore careers in such diverse areas such as:

  • telecommunications
  • microelectronics
  • nuclear power and instrumentation
  • cryogenics
  • astronomy
  • geophysics
  • medical physics
  • materials science
  • computing
  • teaching
  • business, finance and management.

88% of physics students find their main activity after graduation meaningful.

Graduate Outcomes, 2018-19.

Meet our alumni

Hear what graduates say about their career progression and life after university.

Fees and funding

Your tuition fees, funding your studies, and other costs to consider.

Tuition fees

UK fees (applies to Channel Islands, Isle of Man and Republic of Ireland)
Full-time place, per year £9,250
Year in industry fee £1,850
Year abroad fee £1,385
International fees
Full-time place, per year £27,200
Year in industry fee £1,850
Year abroad fee £13,600
Fees are correct for the academic year 2024/25. Please note that the Year Abroad fee also applies to the Year in China.

Tuition fees cover the cost of your teaching and assessment, operating facilities such as libraries, IT equipment, and access to academic and personal support. Learn more about paying for your studies..

Additional costs

We understand that budgeting for your time at university is important, and we want to make sure you understand any course-related costs that are not covered by your tuition fee. This could include buying a laptop, books, or stationery.

Find out more about the additional study costs that may apply to this course.

Additional study costs

We understand that budgeting for your time at university is important, and we want to make sure you understand any course-related costs that are not covered by your tuition fee. This could include buying a laptop, books, or stationery.

Find out more about additional study costs.

Scholarships and bursaries

We offer a range of scholarships and bursaries to provide tuition fee discounts and help with living expenses while at university.

Check out our Liverpool Bursary, worth up to £2,000 per year for eligible UK students. Or for international students, our Undergraduate Global Advancement Scholarship offers a tuition fee discount of up to £5,000 for eligible international students starting an undergraduate degree from September 2024.

Discover our full range of undergraduate scholarships and bursaries

Entry requirements

The qualifications and exam results you'll need to apply for this course.

We've set the country or region your qualifications are from as United Kingdom. Change it here

Your qualification Requirements

About our typical entry requirements

A levels

ABB including Physics and Mathematics at A level.

Applicants with the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) are eligible for a reduction in grade requirements. For this course, the offer is BBB with A in the EPQ.

You may automatically qualify for reduced entry requirements through our contextual offers scheme.

If you don't meet the entry requirements, you may be able to complete a foundation year which would allow you to progress to this course.

Available foundation years:

T levels

T levels are not currently accepted.

GCSE 4/C in English and 4/C in Mathematics
Subject requirements

For applicants from England: For science A levels that include the separately graded practical endorsement, a "Pass" is required.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma

Applications considered alongside A levels. Please contact the University for further information.

International Baccalaureate

33 points that must include 6 points each from Physics and Mathematics at Higher level.

Irish Leaving Certificate H1, H2, H2, H2, H3, H3 including Physics and Mathematics at H2 or above.
Scottish Higher/Advanced Higher

Advanced Highers accepted at grades ABB including Physics and Mathematics.

Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Accepted at grade B, including Mathematics and Physics A Levels at AB.
Access 45 Level 3 credits in graded units in a relevant Diploma,including 30 at Distinction and a further 15 with at least Merit. GCSE grades 4/C in English and 4/C in Mathematics also required. 15 Distinctions are required in each of Mathematics and Physics.
International qualifications

Many countries have a different education system to that of the UK, meaning your qualifications may not meet our entry requirements. Completing your Foundation Certificate, such as that offered by the University of Liverpool International College, means you're guaranteed a place on your chosen course.

English language requirements

You'll need to demonstrate competence in the use of English language, unless you’re from a majority English speaking country.

We accept a variety of international language tests and country-specific qualifications.

International applicants who do not meet the minimum required standard of English language can complete one of our Pre-Sessional English courses to achieve the required level.

English language qualification Requirements
IELTS 6.0 overall, with no component below 5.5
TOEFL iBT 78 overall, with minimum scores of listening 17, writing 17, reading 17 and speaking 19
Duolingo English Test 105 overall, with no component below 95 
Pearson PTE Academic 59 overall, with no component below 59
LanguageCert Academic 65 overall, with no skill below 60
Cambridge IGCSE First Language English 0500 Grade C overall, with a minimum of grade 2 in speaking and listening. Speaking and listening must be separately endorsed on the certificate.
Cambridge IGCSE First Language English 0990 Grade 4 overall, with Merit in speaking and listening
Cambridge IGCSE Second Language English 0510/0511 0510: Grade C overall, with a minimum of grade 2 in speaking. Speaking must be separately endorsed on the certificate. 0511: Grade C overall.
Cambridge IGCSE Second Language English 0993/0991 0993: Grade 5 overall, with a minimum of grade 2 in speaking. Speaking must be separately endorsed on the certificate. 0991: Grade 5 overall.  
International Baccalaureate Standard Level grade 5 or Higher Level grade 4 in English B, English Language and Literature, or English Language
Cambridge ESOL Level 2/3 Advanced 169 overall, with no paper below 162

PRE-SESSIONAL ENGLISH

Do you need to complete a Pre-Sessional English course to meet the English language requirements for this course?

The length of Pre-Sessional English course you’ll need to take depends on your current level of English language ability.

Find out the length of Pre-Sessional English course you may require for this degree.

Pre-sessional English

If you don’t meet our English language requirements, we can use your most recent IELTS score, or the equivalent score in selected other English language tests, to determine the length of Pre-Sessional English course you require.

Use the table below to check the course length you're likely to require for your current English language ability and see whether the course is available on campus or online.

Your most recent IELTS score Pre-Sessional English course length On campus or online
5.5 overall, with no component below 5.5 6 weeks On campus
5.5 overall, with no component below 5.0 10 weeks On campus and online options available
5.0 overall, with no component below 5.0 12 weeks On campus and online options available
5.0 overall, with no component below 4.5 20 weeks On campus
4.5 overall, with no component below 4.5 30 weeks On campus
4.0 overall, with no component below 4.0 40 weeks On campus

If you’ve completed an alternative English language test to IELTS, we may be able to use this to assess your English language ability and determine the Pre-Sessional English course length you require.

Please see our guide to Pre-Sessional English entry requirements for IELTS 6.0, with no component below 5.5, for further details.

Contextual offers: reduced grade requirements

Based on your personal circumstances, you may automatically qualify for up to a two-grade reduction in the entry requirements needed for this course. When you apply, we consider a range of factors – such as where you live – to assess if you’re eligible for a grade reduction. You don’t have to make an application for a grade reduction – we’ll do all the work.

Find out more about how we make reduced grade offers.

About our entry requirements

Our entry requirements may change from time to time both according to national application trends and the availability of places at Liverpool for particular courses. We review our requirements before the start of the new UCAS cycle each year and publish any changes on our website so that applicants are aware of our typical entry requirements before they submit their application.

Recent changes to government policy which determine the number of students individual institutions may admit under the student number control also have a bearing on our entry requirements and acceptance levels, as this policy may result in us having fewer places than in previous years.

We believe in treating applicants as individuals, and in making offers that are appropriate to their personal circumstances and background. For this reason, we consider a range of factors in addition to predicted grades, widening participation factors amongst other evidence provided. Therefore the offer any individual applicant receives may differ slightly from the typical offer quoted in the prospectus and on the website.

Alternative entry requirements

Changes to Physics with Medical Applications with a Year Abroad BSc (Hons)

See what updates we've made to this course since it was published. We document changes to information such as course content, entry requirements and how you'll be taught.

7 June 2022: New course pages

New course pages launched.

7 December 2022: Accreditation

‘Accreditation’ section added after ‘Course overview’ section.

Accreditation
This course is accredited by the Institute of Physics.