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 Post subject: Physics at University
PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 12:18 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 05, 2009 9:26 pm
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I'm trying to get my DS to narrow down a list of Universities that he would be interested in applying to study physics. At the moment he has the following on his list, Oxford, Durham, Nottingham, Bath, Manchester and Warwick. He does not want to study in London. Obviously he needs to drill down and work out whether the modules offered match his interests etc. However could anyone tell me whether there are any other universities that have stand out physics courses that we have overlooked? He is a high achiever. He has tried to get a steer from school but they have not been helpful. I am completely out of my depth as physics is just not my thing :roll:


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 1:35 pm 
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Why Oxford rather than Cambridge? These are all very different places and I would not look at League tables as they are as bad as school ones.

Others to consider would be ones with a year in industry if he wants to work as a Physicist. Find out how much lab time they get ...

Worth looking at Exeter, Loughborough, Southampton ...

https://university.which.co.uk/search/c ... 5D=physics


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 1:39 pm 
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Location: Solihull, West Midlands
Birmingham is worth looking at - a friend's son has just finished there.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:00 pm 
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Location: S E London
DS is loving his physics at Durham.

He also had a place at Birmingham, and spent a long time tossing up between the two

He was also very impressed with Southampton

He found that, because all the courses are accredited by the Institute of Physics, that they pretty much cover the same stuff - although they may arrange it a bit differently. There is some choice in the later years of the course.

You can't study straight physics at Cambridge - it has to be Natural Science. DS had originally wanted to go there, but decided he didn't enjoy Chemistry as much as he thought he would so dropped it at AS and there weren't any other modules he liked the look of. He switched to Oxford, where straight physics is an option but hated it after visiting, so didn't apply in the end.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:38 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 2:28 pm
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Also
Consider if he has a leaning towards theoretical physics or applied.

Does he want a broad first year so he can experience degree level study before making choices to narrow down study areas.

Look at teaching and assessment styles.

Agree about being wary of league tables but the column showing the A level standard at entry can be interesting as can information on first destination of new graduates.

Had he considered Scottish options? I'm behind the times but several had good reputations for physics.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:32 pm 
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Thank you all for your input. Some really useful things to think about and some other Unis to consider. I hadn't though about years in industry or teaching and assessment styles. Thank you. At the moment he is saying he prefers theoretical physics as opposed to applied. He is particularly interested in Astrophysics.

G55 - he is actually going to look at Cambridge for Natural Sciences ( I didn't mention it in my post as I thought it might complicate what I was asking) with a view to picking physics and maths modules. My instincts say that if he liked the course ( which he seems to) then it is better than physics at Oxford as it offers more flexibility ( particularly as he enjoys Chemistry too). But at the end of the day it is down to him as he will have to do the studying ( assuming he were offered a place).

2childmum - out of interest what did your DS not like about physics at Oxford after his visit? My DS was very excited about the course when he read up on it. Was it the city or the department?

Hmm. Scottish Universities. I thought Durham was a long way away!! :lol: But will tell him to have a look.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:41 pm 
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Let him also think about the place he is going to live in - big city? campus?

My DS also wanted the option of catered in his first year as his course had 30 hours contact time including labs and workshops; that eliminated a lot on his 'long list'.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:57 pm 
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:lol: Food - now that is important to a growing lad!

Btw - G55 - I would love one of my DC to choose Exeter :wink: as you know but I am losing a battle here....


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 5:16 pm 
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look at employment statistics having studies at certain universities, UCL is fabulous for Physics and is in Russel Group


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 5:34 pm 
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Location: Solihull, West Midlands
Leicester is also well regarded for Astrophysics/Astronomy (they were involved in the Beagle mission and the Leicester Space Centre is worth a visit). DS1 enjoyed his time there as a Mech Eng so much he stayed on for a PhD and still lives in Leicester more than 10 years later!


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