Why you should choose us
Our Foundation Year programme will prepare you with everything you need to study Physics at undergraduate level here at UEA. You’ll be equipped with all the necessary knowledge and skills needed for a successful degree, and you’ll make a smooth transition into university study and research. Once you’ve completed the Foundation Year, you’ll progress onto your BSc degree, where you'll explore a wide range of subjects, including astrophysics, quantum physics, geophysics, fluid mechanics and computing, making use of our top-class facilities and high-tech equipment.
As well as core modules that give you a solid and broad foundation across Physics, we offer a rich variety of optional modules for you to shape your degree path. In the final year you will undertake a substantial project whose direction you get to control; many students use this opportunity to discover the research direction of our staff, whilst others already have their own idea they want to pursue. It is also possible to work on a medical physics project, in collaboration with the hospital next to campus.
Through your degree you'll develop a range of sought-after skills, ready to embark on the next phase of your life - perhaps an exciting career in industry or teaching, or postgraduate study to dive deeper into a specific topic and explore the cutting edge of research.
Physics at UEA
To study physics is to ask questions – to interrogate everything. What is the nature of matter? What are the origins of the universe? What is the basis for the mechanics of sound? And how will that ocean wave move next? Incredibly diverse, abstract and yet also creative, without physics, there would be no answers to many of these questions, from the smallest to the vastest.
Our Physics Foundation Year is for students with a passion for the subject, but who don’t have the necessary academic qualifications. It will equip you with the knowledge and skills you need to progress further in this physics degree.
You’ll be joining a multidisciplinary faculty with a thriving research community that includes specialist groups with expertise in geophysics, astrophysics, fluid mechanics, chemical physics and quantum physics. You will take advantage of top-class facilities, including spectroscopy and ultrafast laser equipment, high-tech geophysics apparatus and experimental wave tanks.
If you don’t yet meet the academic requirements to start a physics degree, our Foundation Year course is for you. It’s designed to fill gaps in your knowledge and provide you with the skills you'll need to continue as an undergraduate.
You’ll study core modules in physics and mathematics, and select from optional modules in chemistry or computing, depending on your interests. On successful completion of your Foundation Year, you'll be able to continue with the same study as students on our BSc Physics course.
We welcome mature students, students who have previously not studied science but who want to take a new direction in their career, and students who were disadvantaged during their secondary education. We’ll consider your application on a case-by case basis, and you may be interviewed before being offered a place on the course. You do not need to have AS or A2 level qualifications in order to apply.
Physics is not only a fascinating discipline, but a highly regarded qualification too. Study with us at UEA and you’ll develop a deep curiosity about the workings of our universe at a wide range of scales and gain powerful scientific skills to employ in diverse areas, so you’ll leave as a highly employable graduate.
Study and Modules
You will be assigned an academic adviser for the duration of your studies. They’ll help guide your course choices and help to ensure you are keeping up with the necessary studies. In you first year of study, compulsory modules will include both physics and mathematics, alongside which you’ll be offered optional modules in chemistry and computing. You’ll be assessed through a combination of coursework and exams.
For information on subsequent years of this course, please see the full BSc Physics course profile.
Optional A Modules(Credits: 40)
Whilst the University will make every effort to offer the modules listed, changes may sometimes be made arising from the annual monitoring, review and update of modules. Where this activity leads to significant (but not minor) changes to programmes and their constituent modules, the University will endeavour to consult with students and others. It is also possible that the University may not be able to offer a module for reasons outside of its control, such as the illness of a member of staff. In some cases optional modules can have limited places available and so you may be asked to make additional module choices in the event you do not gain a place on your first choice. Where this is the case, the University will inform students.
Teaching and Learning
Our teaching combines lectures, small-group seminars, workshops and practical sessions, and some include an element of programming.
Our group sessions are informal and allow you raise questions related to lectures and find solutions to problems set by tutors. We actively encourage you to discuss academic matters with your tutors on a one-to-one basis.
You’ll use laboratory sessions to perform experiments based on subjects from the lecture programme. They’ll be supervised by lecturers or postgraduate students, who will discuss the theory behind them and will ensure that experiments are safely executed.
You will have plenty of opportunity for independent study throughout your degree programme as you complete coursework and prepare for exams. However, your final year research project will truly exemplify your independent work, allowing you to get to grips with an aspect of physics that really interests you.
We employ a range of assessment methods to best reflect each module and what we hope you will gain from it.
Assessments will usually feature a combination of practical reports, data handling, project work, dissertations, and examinations.
Your foundation year results will not count towards your final degree classification, but they are important should you wish to transfer to a different degree programme.
- A Levels
- CCC. A-Level General Studies and Critical Thinking are not accepted.
- T Levels
- Obtain an overall Pass including a C in the core of the T Level and a Pass in the Occupational Specialism. Any subject is acceptable.
- Extended Diploma: MMM excluding Uniformed Services. See below for accepted subjects and combinations.
- Scottish Highers
- Scottish Advanced Highers
- DDD. A combination of Advanced Highers and Highers may be acceptable.
- Irish Leaving Certificate
- 6 subjects at H4.
- Access to HE Diploma
- Pass the Access to HE Diploma with 45 credits at Level 3.
- International Baccalaureate
- 28 points.
You are required to have Mathematics and English Language at a minimum of Grade C or Grade 4 or above at GCSE.
- English Foreign Language
Applications from students whose first language is not English are welcome. We require evidence of proficiency in English (including writing, speaking, listening and reading):
- IELTS: 6.5 overall (minimum 5.5 in all components) for year 0 entry
We also accept a number of other English language tests. Review our English Language Equivalencies for a list of example qualifications that we may accept to meet this requirement.
Test dates should be within two years of the course start date.
Most applicants will not be called for an interview and a decision will be made via UCAS Hub. However, for some applicants an interview will be requested. Where an interview is required, the Admissions Service will contact you directly to arrange a time.
- Deferred Entry
We welcome applications from students who have already taken or intend to take a gap year. We believe that a year between school and university can be of substantial benefit. You are advised to indicate your reason for wishing to defer entry on your UCAS application.
This course is open to UK applicants. The annual intake is in September each year.
Additional Information or Requirements
Extended Diploma: MMM.
Diploma: MM plus C at A-Level.
Extended Certificate: M plus CC at A-Level.
We welcome applications from students with non-traditional academic backgrounds. If you have been out of study for the last three years and you do not have the entry grades for our three-year degree, we will consider your educational and employment history, along with your personal statement and reference to gain a holistic view of your suitability for the course. You will still need to meet our GCSE English Language and Mathematics requirements.
UEA are committed to ensuring that Higher Education is accessible to all, regardless of their background or experiences. One of the ways we do this is through our contextual admissions schemes.
We welcome and value a wide range of alternative qualifications. If you have a qualification which is not listed here, or are taking a combination of qualifications, please contact us via Admissions Enquiries.
Our Admissions Policy applies to the admissions of all undergraduate applicants.
Fees and Funding
View our information for Tuition Fees.
Scholarships and Bursaries
We are committed to ensuring that costs do not act as a barrier to those aspiring to come to a world leading university and have developed a funding package to reward those with excellent qualifications and assist those from lower income backgrounds. View our range of Scholarships for eligibility, details of how to apply and closing dates.
Course Related Costs
Please see Additional Course Fees for details of course-related costs.
How to Apply
Apply for this course through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Services (UCAS), using UCAS Hub.
UCAS Hub is a secure online application system that allows you to apply for full-time undergraduate courses at universities and colleges in the United Kingdom.
Your application does not have to be completed all at once. Register or sign in to UCAS to get started.
Once you submit your completed application, UCAS will process it and send it to your chosen universities and colleges.
The Institution code for the University of East Anglia is E14.
View our guide to applying through UCAS for useful tips, key dates and further information:
After the Course
Career opportunities in physics are almost as vast as the subject itself. They include everything from academic and research careers to positions in nanotechnology, energy, space research, engineering, telecommunications, education, defence, data science, science journalism, finance, medicine and government agencies. You could also choose to continue your studies to a Master’s or doctoral level.
We work with UEA’s Careers Service to offer you support at every stage of the course, from choosing a career to applying for graduate jobs.