Postgraduate

Physics MPhil, PhD

Physics MPhil, PhD

MPhil - full time: minimum 12 months, part time: minimum 24 months
PhD: full time: minimum 36 months, part time: minimum 72 months

Profile

We offer postgraduate research degrees in Physics at the MPhil and PhD level in all of our major research areas such as Emerging Technology and Materials, Applied Mathematics, and Photoelectron Spectroscopy.

We supervise MPhil and PhD students whose interests match the expertise we have in our five main research themes.

Condensed matter and nanoscale physics

We research electronic, optical, structural and magnetic properties of novel solid-state materials, particularly novel semi-conductor structures and nanostructured materials such as nanocrystals and nanowires. Theoretical studies use quantum mechanical approaches and involve massively parallel supercomputing.

Our development of new approaches to quantum modelling is changing the size and complexity of systems that can be modelled. Experimental work takes place at synchrotron facilities in Europe and America and related work takes place with colleagues in the Emerging Technology and Materials (ETM) Group in the School of Engineering.

Biophysics

Our research in biophysics explores the structure and function of cells with the aim of creating artificial life and building machines based on biological parts. Projects include protocell development and the construction of a cyborg robot. An understanding of biological physics is needed that uses techniques including single molecule manipulation, atomic force microscopy and scanning tunnelling microscopy.

Astrophysics

Galaxies and the interstellar medium, the source of the galactic magnetic field and its influence on the structure of the galaxy form the focus of our research in astrophysics. There is also interest in cosmology, particularly the early universe and its origin in the big bang.

Ultrafast optics

Our research focuses on coherent optical control of atomic collisions in ultracold gases by femtosecond laser light for studies of problems in fundamental physics, such as the measurement of time dependence of the fundamental constants of nature. We also research metrological protocols for characterisation of broadband light, specifically those relating to foundational aspects of quantum mechanics and its application.

Quantum matter and quantum optics

Our research focusses on the theoretical study and modelling of the quantum properties of matter and light. This includes fundamental aspects, from the nature of superfluids and the principles of quantum mechanics, to state-of-the-art technological applications of quantum transport and quantum sensing.

Delivery

Throughout your studies you work closely with your supervisor. In the initial stages your research will be guided by the supervisor but as you gain confidence and expertise you will be given increasing responsibility for the day-to-day running of the project.

You will be trained in all aspects of physics research, including the oral and written presentation of your work. Our Postgraduate Committee provides impartial academic advice and guidance throughout your studies.

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Training & Skills

You will receive a tailored package of support from the University to ensure you maximise your research and future career. There are also opportunities to undertake your research at Newcastle within a Doctoral Training Centre, Centre for Doctoral Training or Doctoral Training Partnership.

Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering Postgraduate Researcher Development Programme and Student Support

Our Postgraduate Researcher Development Programme is a community made up of postgraduates from the Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering.

It will help you to develop the skills and experience that the UK Research Councils expect you to have, or to develop, during your research degree.

Our programme will help you to:

  • complete a training needs analysis, so that you know what your current skills are and where you need help and development
  • use your training needs analysis to create your personal development plan
  • identify appropriate workshops or other events that will help you most and best address your development needs
  • gain the personal and professional key skills development for the successful completion of your research degree

Postgraduate Research Student Support

Our Research Student Support Team will provide support and advice throughout your studies. The team can help you on a variety of issues from registration to producing your transcripts.

Doctoral training centres and partnerships

Being part of a Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP), Doctoral Training Centre (DTC) or Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) means that you can benefit from the research expertise and training of a number of leading universities, academic schools and academics. You'll also be studying alongside a cohort of other PhD students.

These centres are often interdisciplinary, combining expertise and training from multiple subject areas. You may also be able to collaborate with an industrial or commercial organisation.

Your PhD will be funded. Normally the fees are covered and you'll receive a tax-free stipend or living expenses. Additional funding is sometimes available to cover things such as conference attendance and research materials.

The centres/ partnerships below may have PhD opportunities available in your subject area.

Fees & Funding

2020-2021 fees

Find out more about our tuition fees, including how to pay them and available discounts.

EU students starting at Newcastle in 2020 will pay the UK (Home) tuition fee for the full duration of their course.

Funding opportunities

Entry Requirements

A 2:1 honours degree, or international equivalent, in:

  • physics
  • mathematics 
  • electrical or electronic engineering
  • a related subject such as mechanical engineering or computer science

We will also consider your application on an individual basis if you have non-standard qualifications and significant, relevant industry experience.

Find out the equivalent qualifications for your country.

Use the drop down above to find your country. If your country isn't listed please email: international.recruitment@ncl.ac.uk for further information.

English Language Requirements

Select an English language test from the list to view our English language entry requirements.

Please email us at international.recruitment@ncl.ac.uk for further information.

If you have lower English Language scores, you may be accepted onto a pre-sessional English course. 

You may need an ATAS (Academic Technology Approval Scheme) clearance certificate. You'll need to get this before you can get your visa or study on this programme. We'll let you know about the ATAS requirement in your offer letter.

How to Apply

You apply online, track your application and contact the admissions team via our applicant portal. Our step by step guide can help you on your way.

Browse our current research projects for physics.

In your Personal Statement, you should list up to three potential research projects, in order of preference. A research proposal is not required.

For any further information on our research projects or admissions procedures, email maths.physics@ncl.ac.uk

Start dates

There are usually three possible start dates, although in some circumstances an alternative start date can be arranged:

  • January
  • April
  • September

 There is no application closing date for this course, but specific deadlines for funding may apply.

We suggest international students apply at least two months before the course starts. This is so that you have enough time to make the necessary arrangements.

Deposit

If you live outside the UK/EU you must:

  • pay a deposit of £1,500
  • or submit an official letter of sponsorship

The deposit is payable after you receive an offer to study at Newcastle University. The deposit is non-refundable, but is deducted from your tuition fees when you register.

Contact

Postgraduate Secretary
School of Mathematics, Statistics and Physics
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 6960
Email: maths.physics.pg@ncl.ac.uk

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