University of Edinburgh

University of Edinburgh

Theoretical Physics

This course is designed to prepare students for a research career in academia or industry by introducing advanced ideas and techniques that are applicable in a wide range of research areas, while emphasising the underlying physics concepts. The programme is a core part of the Higgs Centre for Theoretical Physics: students are taught by members of the Higgs Centre, and may choose to join research projects as part of their dissertation, or undertake research in a company affiliated to the Higgs Centre. Students will take part in the Centre's activities, including bi-weekly colloquia and workshops involving physicists from around the world.

Entry requirements

The entry requirements are a UK 2.1 Honours degree in physics or mathematics (assuming it has sufficient theoretical-physics content), or its international equivalent. If English is not the 1st language, one of the following qualifications as evidence of spoken and written English: IELTS academic module: 6.5 (with score no lower than 6.0 in each section); TOEFL internet-based: total 92 (with no score lower than 20 in each section); PTE: 61 (with no score lower than 56 in each section); CPE: grade C; CAE: grade B.

Course modules

The taught component of the programme has 2 elements. 2 compulsory courses plus a selection of core courses, which bring all students to an advanced level in subjects such as: general relativity; cosmology; statistical physics; condensed matter physics; quantum field theory and the Standard Model of particle physics. There is also a choice from a wider pool of courses, including specialist courses in mathematics, computing and climate science. Following the taught component of the programme, students undertake a 3-month research project, which leads to a dissertation, drawn from the Higgs Centre for Theoretical Physics, or from industry. In the latter case, students will have the opportunity to undertake part of their research in a company affiliated to the Higgs Centre.

Assessment methods


Sponsorship information

The Higgs Centre for Theoretical Physics is expecting to offer a number of scholarships for students enrolled on the MSc programmes in Mathematical Physics and Theoretical Physics. These scholarships will be tenable for one academic year and will be deducted from tuition fees. The scholarship will be awarded on the basis of academic merit to students of any nationality. Candidates must have, or expect to obtain, a UK first-class Honours degree or its overseas equivalent. In order to be considered for one of the Higgs Centre Scholarships, potential students must submit their application for the MSc programmes by 1st May 2014.


Qualification Study mode Fee Course duration
MSc Full-time £ 9,650 per Academic year (home fees) 1 years
MSc Full-time £ 16,500 per Academic year (overseas fees) 1 years

Campus details

Campus name Town Postcode Region Main campus Campus Partner
University of Edinburgh Edinburgh EH8 9JU Scotland

Key information

MSc Programme Administrator
Telephone number: 
0131 651 7067