Physics and Astronomy

  • 12th in the UK for Physics and Astronomy in The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2018
  • 82% of Physics students in graduate-level employment or further study within six months of graduating
  • Combine your degree with a salaried research placement at companies such as Renishaw, the Home Office, and the Rutherford Appleton Laboratories
  • Study abroad at one of our partner universities in North America, New Zealand or Australia
  • Supportive community characterised by genuine student-staff relationships and small tutorial groups, typically made up of five students

Physics and Astronomy at a glance

Studying Physics at Exeter is a challenging, stimulating, thought-provoking and rewarding experience.

Our department is based in a purpose-built building that is the centre of our academic and student community.

We’ve recently completed a multi-million pound investment programme, filling our teaching laboratories and computer suites with new equipment and creating new student study areas.

Advanced research facilities that you will have access to include clean-rooms for photo and nanolithography, a helium liquefier for low temperature experiments, a water tank for acoustic experiments (SONAR), amplified ultra-fast laser systems for the study of ultra-high speed phenomena, and a suite of instruments for imaging biological materials.

Our degree programmes include a wide range of topics, both applied and theoretical. Many of these are directly developed from research taking place at Exeter. Topics range from cosmology and biophysics to many-body theory, exoplanets, and programming.

You can also take options in other subjects such as a modern language, Philosophy or Mathematics.

Dr Nathan Mayne, Admissions Tutor

One of the greatest things about a Physics degree is the range of work you can undertake during your studies. We are training you, essentially, in how to solve and approach complex problems. Physics as a discipline allows people with a range of skills and preferences to excel and, as your degree progresses, you’ll be increasingly encouraged to pursue your interests, for example, proposing and completing your own research project.


Dr Nathan Mayne, Admissions Tutor

The Exeter Observatory

We maintain an on-site observatory for undergraduate teaching purposes. The observatory has recently been upgraded (2015) to a robotic facility with a computer-controlled mount and dome, 14" Schmidt-Cassegrain, CCD and filters.  You can read more about the observatory here.

All our MPhys and Single Honours BSc degrees are accredited by the Institute of Physics. Accredited MPhys degrees fully satisfy the educational requirements of the Chartered Physicist (CPhys) professional qualification.