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Physics MSc

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Our Physics MSc will give you experience in conducting complex research tasks in the rapidly developing and exciting fields of particle physics and cosmology, experimental biophysics and nanotechnology, and the theory and simulation of condensed matter. It will also provide you with the background knowledge and skills required to become an active scientist.

Key benefits

  • Top 10 in the UK for Physics (QS World Rankings by subject 2020).
  • Located in the heart of London, giving unparalleled access to research facilities.
  • You will be studying innovative modules covering modern theories of physics.
  • Research-led course taught by staff who are recognised leaders in their field.
  • Students whose interests lie in experimental physics have the opportunity to study the state of the art experimental nanoplasmonics, bio-imaging, near-field optics and nanophotonics, with access to the laboratories of the London Centre for Nanotechnology (LCN); and the opportunity to take our flagship module in Photonics and Metamaterials.
  • For students whose interests lie in theoretical physics, the opportunity to take our flagship modules in Standard Model Physics & Beyond and Advanced Condensed Matter.
  • Excellent tutorial support, extensive course-specific interactive teaching and extensive project work.

Key information

Application status Open

Duration 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time

Study mode Full-time, Part-time

Credit value UK 180/ECTS 90

Course intake No set number.

Course leaders

Further details

Course contact for further information

Course contact form Postgraduate admissions

Awarding institution King's College London

Faculty Faculty of Natural & Mathematical Sciences

Department Department of Physics



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Course detail


Our Physics MSc is an interdepartmental course that covers significant research elements of rapidly developing and exciting fields of particle physics and cosmology, experimental biophysics and nanotechnology as well as theory and simulation of condensed matter. This course will equip you with expertise in planning, administration, execution and dissemination of research, and will also provide you with the background knowledge and skills required to become an active scientist.

The Physics MSc is made up of optional and required modules. You must take modules totalling 180 credits to complete the course, including 60 credits that will come from a research project and dissertation. If you are studying full-time, you will complete the course in one year, from September to September. If you are studying part-time, the course will take two years to complete: you will study the required modules in the first year, and a further selection of required and optional modules including the research module in your second year.

You will study modules offering group projects, literature reviews and there are opportunities to explore an extensive range of innovative optional modules, allowing you the freedom to develop your study pathway to reflect your interests.


We use lectures, seminars and group tutorials to deliver most of the modules on the course. You will also be expected to undertake a significant amount of independent study. Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work, e.g. 150 hours work for a 15 credit module. These hours cover every aspect of the module, including independent study.


The primary method of assessment for this course is a combination of written examinations, essays, coursework and individual or group projects and oral presentations. The research project and dissertation will be assessed on an extended piece of writing.

Further literature



Year 1

Courses are divided into modules, and students on this course take modules totalling 180 credits.

Required Modules

You are required to take:

  • Scientific Communications (15 credits)
  • Advanced Topics in Physics (15 credits)
  • Research Project in Physics (60 credits)
Optional Modules

You are required to take at least 30 credits from a range of optional modules, which may typically include:

  • Photonics and Metamaterials (15 credits)
  • Theoretical Treatment of Nano-systems (15 credits)
  • Experimental Techniques in Condensed Matter Physics (15 credits)
  • Bio & Nanomaterials in the Virtual Lab (15 credits)
  • Standard Model Physics & Beyond (15 credits)
  • Advanced Condensed Matter (15 credits)
  • Current Topics in Biophysics (15 credits)
  • Dark Matter & Dark Energy (15 credits)
  • Simulation Methods for Non-equilibrium Systems (15 credits)

Additionally, you are required to take sufficient credits to bring your total for the year to 180, from a range of optional modules, which may typically include:

Modules offered by the King’s College London Department of Mathematics:

  • Lie Groups & Lie Algebras
  • String Theory & Branes
  • Elements of Statistical Learning
  • Mathematical Biology
  • Dynamical Analysis of Complex Systems
  • Equilibrium Analysis of Complex Systems
  • Theory of Complex Networks
  • Supersymmetry

Modules offered by Royal Holloway, University of London:

  • Statistical Mechanics
  • Superfluids, Condensates & Superconductors
  • Nuclear Magnetic Resonance
  • Physics at the Nanoscale

Modules offered by University College London:

  • Advanced Quantum Theory
  • Atom & Photon Physics
  • Quantum Computation & Communication
  • Molecular Physics
  • Particle Physics
  • Order & Excitations in Condensed Matter
  • Planetary Atmospheres
  • Solar Physics
  • Space Plasma & Magnetospheric Physics
  • Molecular Biophysics

Modules offered by Queen Mary, University of London:

  • Relativistic Waves & Quantum Fields
  • Electromagnetic Theory
  • Stellar Structure & Evolution
  • Relativity & Gravitation
  • Solar System
  • The Galaxy
  • Astrophysical Plasmas

King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. Therefore, modules offered may change. We suggest that you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

Entry requirements & how to apply

Physics MSc Entry Requirements
Minimum UK requirements  2:1

Bachelors degree with 2:1 honours degree in Physics. Alternatively, a 2:1 in a degree subject related to physics will be considered on a case by case basis.

In order to meet the academic entry requirements for this programme you should have a minimum 2:1 undergraduate degree with a final mark of at least 60% or above in the UK marking scheme. If you are still studying you should be achieving an average of at least 60% or above in the UK marking scheme.

International requirements   Visit our admissions webpages to view our International entry requirements.
English Language requirements  Band D Visit our admissions webpages to view our English language entry requirements.


Application procedure

Applications must be made online using King’s online application portal apply.kcl.ac.uk and a non-refundable application fee of £70 applies. Your application will be assessed by an admissions tutor. We will interview applicants at a mutually convenient time where reasonable.

ATAS  An ATAS certificate is required for successful applicants applying for this course whose nationality is outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland. For further guidance on obtaining an ATAS certificate can be found on our International Student Advice pages.

Personal statement and supporting information

You will be asked to submit the following documents in order for your application to be considered:

Physics MSc checklist
Personal Statement Yes

A personal statement is required. This can be entered directly into the online application form (maximum 4,000 characters) or uploaded as an attachment to the online application form (maximum 2 pages).

Previous Academic Study Yes A copy (or copies) of your official academic transcript(s), showing the subjects studied and marks obtained. If you have already completed your degree, copies of your official degree certificate will also be required. Applicants with academic documents issued in a language other than English, will need to submit both the original and official translation of their documents.
References Yes One academic reference is required. A professional reference will be accepted if you have completed your qualifications over five years ago. In some cases, we may request an additional reference from you.
Other Optional Applicants may wish to include a CV (Resume) or evidence of professional registration as part of their application.


Application closing date

We recommend that you submit your application as soon as possible. Our first application deadline is the 26th March 2021. After this date, the programme will remain open only if places are still available and will be closed as soon as it is full.

For programmes that remain open beyond this date, the final application deadlines for the following fee statuses are listed below:

  • EU or overseas (international) fee status: 30th July 2021
  • Home fee status: 27th August 2021

Please note, you will not be eligible for an application fee refund if you apply after the first application deadline in March, and we are unable to process more offers as places are filled before the final application deadlines above.

Help and support

If you don't have a suitable qualification for direct entry to a UK university, or if English isn't your first language, our academic preparation courses can help you get ready for study in the UK.

Preparation courses

Fees and funding

  • Full time Home fees: £10,500 per year (2021/22)
  • Full time overseas fees: £27,900 per year (2021/22)
  • Part time Home fees: £5,250 per year (2021/22)
  • Part time overseas fees: £13,950 per year (2021/22)

These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.


When you receive an offer for this course you will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit to secure your place. The deposit will be credited towards your total fee payment.

The UK deposit is £500.

The INTERNATIONAL deposit is £2,000. 

  • If you receive an offer on or before 31st March, payment is due by 30th April 2021.
  • If you receive an offer between 1st April and 30th June, payment is due within one month of receiving the offer.
  • If you receive an offer between 1st July and 31st July, payment is due within two weeks of receiving the offer.
  • If you receive an offer on or after 1st August, payment is due within one week of receiving the offer.
  • If you receive an offer from late August onwards, payment is due within 2 days of receiving the offer.

If you are a current King’s student in receipt of the King's Living Bursary you are not required to pay a deposit to secure your place on the programme. Please note, this will not change the total fees payable for your chosen programme.

Additional costs/expenses

In addition to your tuition fees, you can also expect to pay for: 

  • Books if you choose to buy your own copies 
  • Clothing for optional course related events and competitions 
  • Course packs, which are a vital part of your learning at King's and normally contain extracts from books and other useful documents that will inform your study.
  • Library fees and fines 
  • Personal photocopies 
  • Printing course handouts 
  • Society membership fees 
  • Stationery 
  • Travel costs for travel around London and between campuses 
  • Graduation costs

Please visit our web pages on fees and funding for more information.

Financial help and support

Visit the fees and funding webpages to find out more about bursaries, scholarships, grants, tuition fees, living expenses, student loans and other financial help available at King's.

Career prospects

Many of our graduates go on to study for a PhD in Physics, work in scientific research, teaching or work in the financial sector.


Blue box with King's College London rankings. Starting with, 7th in the UK for research quality. Followed by, 6th in the UK for research power. Concluding with, 4th among multi-faculty universities for research Impact. The source is research excellence framework 2014

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