Professor Mervyn Roy

Dean of Education, College of Science and Engineering

Image of Mervyn Roy

School/Department: Physics & Astronomy, School of

Telephone: +44 (0)116 252 3582



I have over 20 years of experience in innovative course development and HE teaching. I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a University of Leicester Distinguished Teaching Fellow.

I graduated from the University of Leicester in 1995 with a first class BSc degree in Physics, winning the departmental prize for best student in both my second and third years. I then stayed on at Leicester to study for a PhD in Many-electron effects in the X-ray absorption fine structure under the supervision of Dr S. J. Gurman. From 1999 to 2006 I was employed as a post-doctoral research associate and temporary lecturer in the department, first working on self-assembled semiconductor quantum dots then on carbon nanotube quantum dots. I was awarded a lectureship in 2006, working on graphene and on abinitio electronic structure calculations focussed on compound semiconductors.

Over time, my career has progressed into teaching leadership within both the School and the wider University. I was the Director of Education in the School of Physics and Astronomy from 2016 to 2022 (joint with Simon Vaughan from 2016-2021).

I am currently the Dean of Education for the College of Science and Engineering. I provide strategic academic leadership for learning, teaching, employability, student recruitment and the student experience in the College, covering over 50 programmes and more than 3000 students split across Schools of: Engineering; Computing and Mathematical Sciences; Geology, Geography and the Environment; Chemistry; and Physics and Astronomy. I chair the University Apprenticeships Management Board.


My research interests are focused mainly on the quantum theory of semiconductor nanostructures. I have long standing interests in quantum dots, carbon nanotubes, graphene, scanning tunnelling microscopy of single dopants, and x-ray absorption spectroscopy. I am also interested in compound semiconductor detectors. I am experienced with effective mass, tight-binding, and ab-initio DFT electronic structure calculations for a variety of different systems. I have over 25 years experience of code development and in X-ray absorption spectroscopy.


Scopus publication list.

Selected publications

Probing the local electronic structure of isovalent Bi atoms in InP. C. M. Krmalle, A. R. Da Cruz, M. E. Flatte, M. Roy, P. A. Maksym, L. Y. Zhang, K. Wang, Y.Y. Li, S. M. Wang, and P. M. Koenraad, Phys. Rev. B 101, 024113 (2020).

Incorporation of Bi atoms in InP studied at the atomic scale by cross-sectional scanning tunneling microscopy. C. M. Krammel, Mervyn Roy, F. J. Tilley, P. A. Maksym, L. Y. Zhang, P. Wang, K. Wang, Y. Y. Li, S. M. Wang, and P. M. Koenraad, Phys. Rev. Materials 1, 034606 (2017)

Scanning tunnelling microscopy contrast of isovalent impurities on the GaAs (110) surface explained with a geometrical model. F. J. Tilley, Mervyn Roy, P. A. Maksym, P. M. Koenraad, C. M. Krammel, and J. M. Ulloa, Phys. Rev. B 93, 035313 (2016).

Reading and writing charge on graphene devices. M. R. Connolly, E. D. Herbschleb, R. K. Puddy, M. Roy, D. Anderson, G. A. C. Jones, P. Maksym and C. G. Smith, Appl. Phys. Letts 101, 023505 (2012).

Effective mass theory of interacting electron states in semiconducting carbon nanotube quantum dots. M. Roy and P. A. Maksym, Phys. Rev. B 85, 205432 (2012).

Generalized effective-mass theory of subsurface scanning tunneling. M. Roy, P. A. Maksym, D. Bruls, P. Offermans and P. M. Koenraad, Phys. Rev. B 82, 195304 (2010).

Magnetic field induced confinement-deconfinement transition in graphene quantum dots. G. Giavaras, P. A. Maksym, M. Roy, J. Phys.: Condens. Matter 21, 102201 (2009).

Enhanced donor binding energy close to a semiconductor surface. A. P. Wijnheijmer, J.K. Garleff, K. Teichmann, M. Wenderoth, S. Loth, R. G. Ulbrich, P. A. Maksym, M. Roy and P. M. Koenraad, Phys. Rev. Lett. 102, 166101 (2009).

Semiconducting carbon nanotube quantum dots: Calculation of the interacting electron states by exact diagonalisation. M. Roy and P. A. Maksym, EPL, 86(3), 37001 (2009).

Atomic-scale structure and photoluminescence of InAs quantum dots in GaAs and AlAs. P. Offermans, P. M. Koenraad, J. H. Wolter, K. Pierz, M. Roy, and P. A. Maksym, Phys. Rev. B 72 (16), 165332 (2005).

Efficient Method for Calculating Electronic states in self-assembled quantum dots. M. Roy and P. A. Maksym, Phys. Rev. B 68 (23), 5308 (2003). Multiple-electron excitation in X-ray absorption: A simple generic model. M. Roy, J. D. Lindsay, S. Louch and S. J. Gurman, J. Sync. Rad. 8(4), 1103 (2001).

An investigation of the use of the Hedin-Lundqvist exchange and correlation potential in EXAFS data analysis. M. Roy and S. J. Gurman, J. Sync. Rad. 8(4), 1095 (2001).

Amplitude reduction in EXAFS. M. Roy and S. J. Gurman, J. Synch. Rad. 6(3), 228 (1999).


I have successfully supervised 4 PhD students to completion.


During over 20 years in HE I have taught most core physics subjects at undergraduate level focussing on quantum mechanics, mathematical physics, and computer programming. I have a strong interests in programme design, and in developing student skills through authentic assessment.

I am particularly proud of the developments I have made to 'Physics Special Topics'. This is a year 4 module where students act as authors, referees, and editors for their own student-led research journal. I took over the leadership of this module in 2010 moving the journal online where it has gathered a significant amount of media intereset.

I created our suite of 7 year-3 skills electives designed to enhance student employability and, as part of an Advance HE project on enterprise and entrepreneurship, developed and now run the Space Park Leicester Enterprise Challenge which brings students together with representatives from space-enabled industry.

I was Director of Education in Physics and Astronomy from 2016-2022 (joint with Simon Vaughan from 2016-2021). I was Senior Tutor from 2015-2022 and Careers Tutor from 2014-2022. From 2009 to 2014 I was the Head of Admissions in the department and the Deputy Admissions Tutor from 2006-2009. During my tenure as Director of Education I co-led the School through the transformation of our curriculum and through re-accreditation. The School teaching metrics during my tenure were exemplary, including a median NSS satisfaction score over 95% and top-5 UK rankings in 2020, 21 and 22.

In July 2013 I was awarded a University of Leicester Teaching Fellowship for my 'proactive empathetic and innovative contributions to the teaching and student support activities of the Department of Physics and Astronomy.' In October 2017 I was made a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (UKPSF 3). In 2018 I was formally commended by the Leicester Learning Institute in recognition of 'the quality of my application for HEA fellowship'. Joint with Simon Vaughan I was awarded the University Ignite Innovators Award (2021) for our efforts to support students and develop University teaching practices during the pandemic. In 2020 I moved from a Teaching and Research contract to a Teaching Focussed contract.

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