BSc

Mathematics / Physics

Key Facts

Code FG31
  • Typical A-level offer

    ABC with A in Mathematics and B in Physics, or BBB with B in Mathematics and B in Physics

  • Course Length

    3 Years

Further details on entry requirements

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The Mathematics and Physics Degree (FG31) at Aberystwyth University offers you the opportunity to combine the study of two closely-related disciplines in a coherent and structured format. The Mathematics and Physics Degree covers the core elements of each subject area, supplemented by a great choice of elective specialities, and you will gain a firm knowledge of the mathematical and numerical skills that underpin our understanding of physical concepts and natural phenomena. You will be taught in lectures and problem-solving classes with good staff/student ratios in the highest-rated department for Mathematics in Wales. Graduates of the Mathematics and Physics Degree are in significant demand across many industries that include science, engineering, technology and finance.

Top 10 in the UK for student satisfaction in the subject area of Physics and Astronomy (NSS 2016)

Department of Mathematics: 92% student satisfaction (NSS 2016)

94% of undergraduates from the Department of Mathematics who graduated in 2015 were in employment or further education six months after graduating (DLHE 2015)

Department of Physics: 95% student satisfaction (NSS 2016)

92% of undergraduates who graduated from the Department of Physics in 2015 were in employment or further education six months after graduating (DLHE 2015)

  • Overview
  • Modules
  • Employability
  • Teaching & Learning
  • Student Views

Overview

In studying this BSc joint honours dually-accredited degree programme in Mathematics and Physics you will divide your time equally between these two highly complementary academic disciplines in a department which is making ground-breaking advances in research and innovation.

Why study Mathematics and Physics at Aberystwyth?

Our Mathematics courses are accredited by the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications (IMA), the UK’s learned and professional society for mathematics and its applications. The IMA exists to support the advancement of mathematical knowledge and its applications and to promote and enhance mathematical culture in the United Kingdom and elsewhere, for the public good. Our Physics courses are accredited by the Institute of Physics (IoP), a leading scientific society which engages with policymakers and the general public to advance physics education, research and application, giving you a head start when you enter the competitive jobs market.

Mathematics and Physics have been taught at Aberystwyth since the foundation of the university in 1872, making the university the first in Wales to teach these subjects. Recent investment of several million £s in teaching and research has ensured that we continue to innovate and provide a stimulating learning environment for a growing body of mathematics and physics students from all over the world.

The Department of Mathematics maintained its position as one of the best departments in Wales in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF2014). The department returned almost 90% of our staff, the highest proportion of any Welsh mathematics department. Results show that 1 in 8 of our research outputs are world leading, and more than 60% are either world leading or internationally excellent. All of our research and the impact it has outside universities, was judged to be of international standard.

Our Physics lecturers are also researchers working at the cutting edge of their respective fields, so you can be confident that your learning experience will be informed by the latest specialist knowledge along with advanced instrumentation, modelling and techniques.

The Department of Mathematics and Physics is at the forefront of Welsh-medium provision in these subjects at higher education level in Wales. Details of Welsh language modules in mathematics and physics may be obtained from the Department.

Our Staff

Most lecturers in the Department of Mathematics are qualified to PhD level and are research active. Many have a postgraduate teaching qualification.

Department of Physics Lecturers are all qualified to PhD level and have a track record of research in their fields of specialisation.

Modules

Employability

Career prospects

A degree in Mathematics and Physics will be particularly valuable in employment situations which require specialist numerical skills and logical and analytical thought. These include working for organisations such as the Office of National Statistics and the Meteorological Office, but other career paths include accountancy and banking, risk analysis and actuarial work, finance management, investment analysis, information technology, laboratory and technical work, and research and development.

Transferable Skills

Studying for a degree in Mathematics and Physics will equip you with a range of transferable skills which are highly valued by employers. These include:

• enhanced mathematical and computational skills
• effective problem-solving and creative thinking skills
• research and data analysis skills
• a thorough grounding in information technology skills
• the ability to work independently
• time-management and organisational skills, including the ability to meet deadlines
• the ability to express ideas and communicate information in a clear and structured manner, in both written and oral form
• self-motivation and self-reliance
• team-working, with the ability to discuss concepts in groups, accommodating different ideas and reaching agreement

Year in Employment scheme (YES)
The University operates a Year in Employment Scheme (YES), which offers you a fantastic opportunity to take a year out between your second and third year to work in an organisation in the UK or overseas. YES provides a very rewarding and worthwhile experience, both personally and professionally, and can help you to stand out from the crowd in a very competitive job market. The University’s Career Service will help you to explore your options and secure a suitable work placement.

GO Wales
GO Wales is administered by the University’s Career Service, working with local businesses to create paid work placements of a few weeks’ duration for students. It gives you the opportunity to gain valuable work experience which will enhance your CV and make you more attractive to potential employers.

Teaching & Learning

What will I learn?

In the first year you will take core modules in mathematical analysis, algebra and calculus, classical and modern physics, dynamics, and computational and experimental physics. Optional modules will allow you to direct your studies according to your preferences.

In the second year you will take linear algebra, thermal physics, mathematical physics, and quantum mechanics as core modules. A broad range of optional modules allows for further specialism.

In the third year your core modules include condensed matter, electromagnetism, and atoms and molecules. You will also undertake a project in which you will investigate a problem of an experimental, theoretical, data analysis, instrumentation or computer modelling nature under the supervision of a member of the academic staff.

How will I be taught?

You will be taught through a complementary set of teaching and learning methods and approaches, ranging from formal lectures, seminars and tutorials to workshops, practicals and individual and group-based project work.

You will be assessed through a combination of coursework, continuous assessment, presentations, lab reports, lab diaries, data interpretation and examinations.

You will be assigned a personal tutor throughout your degree course, who will help you with any problems or queries, whether these are academic-related or personal issues. You should feel free to contact them at any time for help and advice.

You will also have the opportunity to complete a Personal Development Plan (PDP) at Aberystwyth. This is a structured process of self-appraisal, reflection, and planning, which will enable you to chart your personal, academic and professional development throughout your time at university. By recording your academic performance, and highlighting the skills you already have and those you will need for future employability, the PDP portfolio will equip you with the necessary tools to plan effectively, develop successful approaches to study, and consider your future career options and aspirations.

Student Views

Maths is a great course with really friendly and approachable lecturers. The content is always really interesting, but challenging to the right extent. The whole department works effectively to offer all the facilities needed to gain a good degree. Jennifer O'Neil

Everyday Physics enhances your understanding of the universe and everything we experience. Passionate scientists inform you of their contributions to science at the forefront of physics. Your time is split between gaining hands-on laboratory experience using exciting equipment including lasers, oscilloscopes and spectrometers, and lectures that will inspire and interest you. Each module challenges your intelligence and allows you to gain knowledge that most people benefit from but do not know exists. Students achieve excellence, and stretch their minds. It requires time and effort, but the skills and understanding you gain are second to none. Sarah Chandler

Entry Requirements

A Levels ABC with A in Mathematics and B in Physics, or BBB with B in Mathematics and B in Physics

GCSE requirements (grade C min):
English or Welsh, Mathematics

BTEC National Diploma:
DMM-DDM with specified subject and B in A level Mathematics

International Students

International Baccalaureate:
28-30 points overall with 4-5 points in Physics and 4-5 points in Mathematics at Higher Level

European Baccalaureate:
70% points overall with 60% in Physics and 75% in Mathematics at Higher Level

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