Physics with Foundation Year BSc, 4-5 years

Start date:

2018
2019

This is for you if... you want to study physics, but don’t have the traditional entry requirements.

Typical offer
BBB
UCAS code
F399
Department
Physics and Astronomy

Admissions enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 5281
seadmissions@le.ac.uk

Course enquiries: Dr Paul Howes
0116 252 3587
Paul.Howes@leicester.ac.uk

Department of Physics and Astronomy website

Course description

Course description

Our integrated Science, Technology and Engineering (STEM) Foundation Year degrees are aimed at students who wish to study a STEM subject, such as physics, but don't have the traditional entry requirements.

  • By completing the STEM Foundation Year you will automatically progress onto the first year of your chosen degree.
  • You will be taught by our expert academic staff from across a number of departments.
  • The course does not require a maths test for entry, but it will cover the A-level maths syllabus and understanding of this will be measured before you progress.
  • The course strongly emphasises the development of essential professional and personal skills, which are necessary throughout your studies and beyond.
  • During your foundation year you will join our student community and be able to enjoy all aspects of the University of Leicester student experience. You will be able to join the Students’ Union, use our academic and leisure facilities, live in our accommodation and access all our support services.
  • You will have a personal tutor to support you.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

  • A-levels: BBB or points equivalent from your best three A-levels (non-traditional science A-levels considered). You must have taken Maths or Physics at AS-level or hold GCSEs at grade A/7 or above in Maths and Physics
  • BTEC Diploma: DDM in a science related subject – typically Engineering or a Physical Science discipline
  • International Baccalaureate: Pass diploma with 28 points minimum, with a minimum of 15 points at HL.
  • Access to HE courses in Science and Engineering: Pass Diploma with a minimum of 45 credits at level 3, 24 of which must be at Distinction

We welcome applicants with other qualifications. Please contact seadmissions@le.ac.uk to find out more.

NB. This course is only open to applicants from the UK and other EU countries. Applicants outside the EU can apply for our International Foundation Year.

Selection Process

When considering your application, we will look for evidence that you will be able to fulfil the objectives of the course and achieve the standards required. We will take into account a range of factors including previous exam results.

English Language Requirements

IELTS 6.0 or equivalent. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

International Qualifications

Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

Countries list

Fees and funding

Fees and funding

UK and EU Students

Starting in 2019

Tuition fees for 2019/20 are yet to be confirmed.

As an indication of what you might pay, the fees for students who started in 2018/19 were:

  • Tuition fees were £9,250 in the first year
  • Year Abroad fees were £1,250 for that year
  • Year in Industry fees were 15% of the full-time tuition fee that applies in that year

Find out more about scholarships and funding.

International Students

Please note this course is not available to International (non-EU) students.

Accreditation

Accreditation

All of our degrees are accredited by the Institute of Physics.

An accredited degree not only gives you a solid grounding in core physics, it also sets you on a route towards Institute of Physics membership and the Chartered Physicist (CPhys) professional qualification. With an accredited BSc degree to your name, you will have partially fulfilled the educational requirements for CPhys status.

Careers and employability

Careers and employability

You can gain first-hand experience of physics education through a final year mentoring scheme with physics teachers in local schools, working for half a day a week over one semester.

We offer a small number of Summer Research Placements: six weeks of paid employment working with the research groups within the Department of Physics and Astronomy. These placements provide excellent experience if you want to go on to a career in academic or industrial research.

Our dedicated Careers Tutor can provide information, advice and guidance on the graduate job application process.

Our Career Development Service is here to support you, with advice on interviews, CVs, work experience, volunteering and more. From Freshers' Week to Graduation and beyond, they are here to help you reach your professional goals.

Related courses

Related courses

Our research

Our research

Course structure

Foundation Year

Foundation Year

Modules

  • Maths: Core A-level content, with an emphasis on developing your competence and confidence at applying mathematics to problems in the physical sciences.
  • Science 1: Materials: Phases of matter (solids, liquids and gases), atomic structure and radioactivity, chemical bonds and chemical reactions, properties of solids (engineering materials, elastic properties, strength, toughness, failure and electrical properties).
  • Science 2: Mechanics: Newton's laws, forces, mass, velocity acceleration, projectiles, momentum, angular momentum, circular motion, simple harmonic motion and resonance.
  • Science 3: Heat and energy: Temperature, heat, power, ideal gases and kinetic theory.
  • Science 4: Electricity and magnetism: Light, optics and the quantum world.
  • Methods and Techniques: Core study skills and professional competences necessary for successful university level study. Reading scientific literature, research techniques, report writing skills, presentation skills, computer programming and algorithms.
  • Physical Science Laboratory: Basic experimental techniques, health and safety in the laboratory, recording data, data analysis and report writing.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 1

Year 1

Year 1 of the BSc course is your second year at Leicester.

Core modules

  • Mechanics
  • Electricity and Magnetism
  • Mathematical Physics 1.1
  • Light and Matter
  • Waves and Quanta
  • Mathematical Physics 1.2
  • Physics Skills and Professional Development 1
  • Experimental Physics 1

Option modules

Choose one option module from:

  • Introduction to Astrophysics, Modern Physics and Space Science
  • Introduction to Applied Physics, Astrophysics and Space Science
  • Introduction to Applied Physics, Astrophysics and Modern Physics
  • Introduction to Applied Physics, Modern Physics and Space Science

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 2

Year 2

Year 2 of the BSc course is your third year at Leicester.

Core modules

  • Mathematical Physics 2
  • Relativity, Quantum Physics and Particles
  • Electromagnetic Fields
  • Statistical Physics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Physics Skills and Professional Development 2
  • Experimental Physics 2

Option modules

Choose one option module from:

  • Intermediate Astrophysics and Modern Physics
  • Intermediate Astrophysics and Applied Physics
  • Intermediate Astrophysics and Space Science
  • Intermediate Modern Physics and Space Science
  • Intermediate Applied Physics and Space Science
  • Intermediate Applied Physics and Modern Physics

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year in Industry or Abroad (optional)

Year in Industry or Abroad (optional)

If you want to, you can spend your third year studying abroad at one of our partner institutions or working on an industrial placement (eligibility is dependent on your academic performance in Years 1 and 2). Alternatively, you can opt to continue studying at the University and complete your degree in four years.

NB. A year spent abroad or on an industrial placement still incurs a tuition fee, but this is much lower than for a normal year at Leicester. See our Fees and Funding section for details.

Year Abroad

Studying abroad is not just for people who are interested in travelling and meeting new people. It is about acquiring life skills that are becoming increasingly significant for a wide range of jobs in our modern globalised society. Whether you go on to work in the private sector, the state sector, a non-governmental organisation or become self-employed you will find the experience invaluable. Find out more from our International Office.

Our exchange programme with the University of Groningen is administered through the European Erasmus scheme. If you are eligible for a loan from Student Finance you can apply for a travel grant from them.

  • For the latest information on the future of the Erasmus scheme at UK universities please see our Brexit microsite 

We also have links with some universities outside Europe. If you are receiving financial assistance from Student Finance your support will continue and you may also be eligible to apply for additional travel grants or scholarships. We have links with the following universities:

Year in Industry

An industrial placement is a fantastic opportunity to gain experience of a professional working environment, between your second and third years of study. By enhancing your degree with an industrial placement, you can make yourself a more attractive proposition to employers after you graduate.

You'll benefit from real-world experience in a commercial setting, enabling you to make an easier transition from studying to working after you finish your degree. You'll gain invaluable insight into a potential career path, as well as strengthening your CV significantly in preparation for entering the graduate labour market. On top of all this, you'll be paid a salary for your placement, which gives you greater financial flexibility as well as offsetting the cost of the extra year.

For further information, please visit the Industrial Placement pages on the College of Science and Engineering website.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Final Year

Final Year

Core modules

  • Physics Skills and Professional Development 3
  • Quantum Mechanics
  • Radiation and Matter
  • Physics Challenge
  • Research Project

Option modules

Choose two option modules from:

  • Group Project
  • Astrodynamics
  • Electronics
  • Lean Launchpad: Evidence Based Entrepreneurship
  • Python
  • Numerical Programming In C

Then choose one option module from:

  • Applied and Medical Physics
  • Stellar Astrophysics
  • The Space Environment

Then choose ;one option module from:

  • Elementary Particles, the Standard Model and Beyond
  • Quasars and Cosmology
  • Planetary Physics

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Why Leicester?

In the Physics Challenge module, third year students work in teams to solve problems requiring imagination, estimation or approximation. Like many real-world problems, there are often no right answers but the teams compete to find and present the best answers.

We are a top 5 Physics department [Source: Guardian league table 2016, 2017] and our degrees are accredited by the UK Institute of Physics (IOP).

We have an excellent staff-student ratio (among the best in the UK) [Source: Guardian league tables 2016, 2017] and we operate an open door policy. This means teaching staff make themselves available throughout the day for you to get the support you need.

We host a 4760 core supercomputer for undergraduate and research use. We also host part of DiRAC, the UK’s supercomputing facility for particle physics, astrophysics and cosmology.

Physics at Leicester

Passionate about physics, Heidi used a wide range of equipment – from oscilloscopes to robot dogs.

Teaching and learning

You will be taught through a combination of lectures, small group tutorials, lab sessions, seminars, workshop classes and project work. Training in scientific computing and programming is built into each degree.

A typical week for a first year physics student might consist of five hours of lectures, about two afternoons in laboratory or computing workshops (six hours), two hours of problem classes, four hours of workshops, and one hour in a small group tutorial session. This is a total of about 20 hours of contact time. You will also spend several hours a week on private study.

Assessment includes exams and course work (such as workshop and seminar problem classes). Lab work is primarily assessed in real time and project work is assessed through written reports and oral presentations.

You will have regular meetings with your personal tutor to discuss progress in your studies. Your personal tutor will also provide a sympathetic ear for all matters of personal concern, whether they be academic, financial, housing, career or social issues.

Independent learning

When not attending lectures, seminars or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for exams. To help with your independent learning, you can access the Library and our social study spaces in halls of residence.

Overall workload

Typical workload hours for Physics and Astronomy courses in 2016/17:

Year 1: 34% of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

  • Teaching, learning and assessment: 408 hours
  • Independent learning: 792 hours

Year 2: 27% of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

  • Teaching, learning and assessment: 324 hours
  • Independent learning: 876 hours

Year 3: 23% of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

  • Teaching, learning and assessment: 276 hours
  • Independent learning: 924 hours

Final year: 18% of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

  • Teaching, learning and assessment: 216 hours
  • Independent learning: 984 hours

While your actual contact hours may depend on the option modules you select, the above information gives an indication of how much time you will need to allocate to different activities for each year of your course.

Academic support

Our Student Learning Development Team provides help in the following areas:

  • study and exam skills
  • academic writing
  • presentations
  • dissertations
  • numerical data skills
  • referencing sources

Our AccessAbility Centre offers support and practical help for students with dyslexia or other specific learning difficulties, including physical, mental health or mobility difficulties, deafness, or visual impairment.

Teaching staff

You will be taught by an experienced teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. PhD research students who have undertaken teacher training may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader. Our teaching is informed by the research we do. You can learn more about our staff by visiting our staff profiles.

Apply now

Course Qualification Duration UCAS Code Availability
Course Physics with a Foundation Year Qualification BSc Duration 4 years full-time UCAS Code F399 Availability Apply Now