Published: 30 October 2018

Five reasons to study physics at Surrey

Admissions Tutor Dr Caroline Shenton-Taylor reveals what makes our physics degrees different and the secret behind our graduates’ success.

Physics student


  1. Placement opportunities

    Our work placements enable students to find out what it’s really like to work in their chosen field and develop key skills such as team-working, project management and communication.

    BSc students can choose to take a Professional Training placement year with a company like Merck, Airbus Defence and Space, Tesla Engineering or BAE Systems, while all MPhys students participate in a unique Research Year with a renowned research institution in the UK or further afield. With research destinations across Europe, Japan, Canada, the United States, Australia and more, Surrey students are contributing to innovative global research as part of their degree programme. Surrey was ranked 1st in the UK and 7th worldwide in the 2019 QS World Employability Rankings for work placements and research partnerships.

    Not only have we been running our successful placement scheme for over 40 years, we are also part of SEPnet (South East Physics Network), which provides valuable summer placement opportunities, enabling students to take part in industry-sponsored research activities.


  2. Partnered with NPL
    We have a strategic partnership with the National Physical Laboratory (NPL), the UK’s National Measurement Institute and a world leader in developing and applying the most accurate measurement standards in areas such as advanced manufacturing, aerospace, the digital world, energy and healthcare.
  3. Teaching inspired by research
    You will study at the place where Emeritus Professor Alf Adams invented the strained quantum-well laser in the 1980s: an efficient laser used within DVDs, supermarket checkouts and optical fibre communications. Today, Surrey is home to world leading academics, including theoretical physicist and Royal Society Fellow Professor Jim Al-Khalili. From quantum biology to nuclear astrophysics, photonics to medical physics, you will learn from academics leading the way in their own scientific fields.
  4. State-of-the-art facilities
    Surrey’s Department of Physics has extensive facilities including our recently refurbished undergraduate teaching laboratories and our high-tech research centres used for final year student projects. With a student observatory, Ion Beam Centre, high performance computing facilities and newly formed quantum biology centre, Surrey is well equipped to support innovative teaching. The student observatory telescope is also used by our thriving physics society PhysSoc.
    In addition, the Department of Physics hosts a full programme of talks and activities throughout the year.
  5. Great employment prospects
    Studying physics at Surrey opens up a huge range of career opportunities, not only in science and industry but also in a diverse range of other sectors such as journalism, law, IT, education and finance. Recent graduates have gone on to work for companies such as Fourth State Medicine Ltd, Raytheon Systems Ltd, CGI, DSTL, Atkins and the NHS.

These are just the top 5 reasons! Find out more and discover our courses in physics.

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