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Masters Degrees (Biological Physics)

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This new programme prepares students for a career in the rapidly developing field of biological physics. Read more
This new programme prepares students for a career in the rapidly developing field of biological physics. Navigating across the boundaries of the established disciplines of biology and physics - using tools and techniques developed for one discipline to answer questions arising in another – students will also interact with experienced researchers in the laboratory from the outset.

Degree information

Students gain broad background knowledge of cell and developmental biology, and physical theories and experimental physics techniques applied to biological systems. They also gain theoretical and working knowledge of techniques from physics and engineering used in biological physics research, including optical microscopy, microfabrication, and data analysis.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of five core modules (75 credits), two optional modules (45 credits) and a report (60 credits).

Core modules
-Advanced Biophysical Theories
-BioMEMs and Microscopy Techniques
-Biosciences Research Skills
-Molecular Biophysics
-The Scientific Literature

Optional modules - students must select one of the following 30-credit modules:
-Advanced Cell Biology
-ABC – Analysis of Biological Complexity

And one of:
-Aspects of Bioengineering
-Image Processing
-Introduction to Physical Techniques in the Life Sciences
-Machine Vision
-Matlab Programming for Biology
-Mechanisms of Development
-Statistics for Biology

Dissertation/report
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a report of 10,000 words.

Teaching and learning
Teaching is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars and workshops and by an element of problem-centred learning, innovatively linking taught material to a set of student-selected research case studies, Taught modules are assessed by problem sets and examinations; ‘hands-on’ modules (e.g. BioMEMs and Microscopy Techniques) and research projects are assessed by presentations, assessed reports and the dissertation.

Careers

This programme will prepare students for an increasingly interdisciplinary work and research environment in biological physics and quantitative biology and their applications in industrial research or academic settings.

Employability
The programme includes significant transferable skills components (e.g. scientific writing, presentations, outreach, innovation) which are highly relevant to future employability. Students gain a deep understanding of both the physics and biology underpinning phenomena observed in living systems - as well as direct knowledge of cutting-edge technologies likely to play a role in industrial development and academic research - while addressing key societal challenges (from cancer to healthy ageing).

Why study this degree at UCL?

The new Biological Physics MSc brings together expertise in biological and physical sciences at UCL. In the last two years the UCL Institute for the Physics of Living Systems has been created to enhance the teaching and research opportunities in interdisciplinary physics and life sciences at UCL.

The necessity to cross traditional disciplinary boundaries is particularly true of biology where there is a growing realisation that understanding the physics underlying biological phenomena is critical in order to rationally develop next generation treatments for disease and solutions for food security in a globalised world.

Students are immersed in an active research environment from the outset, interacting with experienced researchers in the laboratory and familiarising themselves with state-of-the-art biological and biophysical research techniques.

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The Physics master’s programme offers you a research intensive tailor-made study path on current topics in experimental and theoretical physics at an institute of international renown. Read more

The Physics master’s programme offers you a research intensive tailor-made study path on current topics in experimental and theoretical physics at an institute of international renown.

What does this master’s programme entail?

The Physics master’s programme is intimately related to the scientific research carried out at the Leiden Institute of Physics. You will spend approximately 50% of your programme on research, as a member of one of our top-level international research groups. We offer five research specialisations, with emphasis on either experimental or theoretical physics, which train you as an independent researcher. We also offer three specialisations that put Physics in broader societal contexts and train you for careers where a Physics background is an asset. Each of these specialisations aims at providing a combination of research independence and content proficiency that fully prepares you for a successful professional development for your professional development.

Learn more about the Physics programme.

Why study Physics at Leiden University?

  • The programme offers a wide choice of individual study paths that take into account individual needs and interests. You can either build a purely academic profile, or you may combine physics research with education, business studies or science communication.
  • You will carry out at least one research project with one of the research groups of the Leiden Institute of Physics. Research at the department is at the forefront of fundamental modern Physics at an internationally competitive level.
  • At the Leiden Institute of Physics you experience an open, inclusive, and collegial atmosphere. Your weekly routine includes attending colloquia of international speakers, partaking in symposia and participating in lively scientific discussions.

Find more reasons to choose Physics at Leiden University.

Physics: the right master’s programme for you?

Are you looking into furthering your education in fundamental questions in physics? Then our Physics master’s programme is the right choice. Whether you are interested in experimental or theoretical research, or cosmology, we offer it all. You will be trained for a career in research within or outside academia. You can also choose for a more practical-oriented specialisation where you combine one year of Physics research with one year of training in business, communication or education.

Read more about the entry requirements for Physics.

Specialisations



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Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Nanotechnology (Physics)  at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017). Read more

Visit our website for more information on fees, scholarships, postgraduate loans and other funding options to study Nanotechnology (Physics)  at Swansea University - 'Welsh University of the Year 2017' (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017).

The MSc by Research Nanotechnology (Physics) enables students to pursue a one year individual programme of research. The Nanotechnology (Physics) programme would normally terminate after a year. However, under appropriate circumstances, this first year of research can also be used in a progression to Year 2 of a PhD degree.

For MSc by Research in Nanotechnology (Physics) programme you will be guided by internationally leading researchers through an extended one-year individual research project. There is no taught element. The Nanotechnology (Physics) programme has a recommended initial research training module (Science Skills & Research Methods), but otherwise has no taught element and is most suitable for you if you have an existing background in geography or cognate discipline and are looking to pursue a wholly research-based programme of study.

As a student of the MSc by Research in Nanotechnology (Physics) you will be fully integrated into one of our established research groups and participate in research activities such as seminars, workshops, laboratories, and field work.

Key Features

Swansea is a research led University to which the Physics department makes a significant contribution, meaning that as a postgraduate Physics student you will benefit from the knowledge and skills of internationally renowned academics.

The Department received top ratings of 4* and 3* in the 2008 RAE, which classified our research as World-leading or Internationally excellent in terms of its originality, significance and rigour.

Links with Industry

Our two research groups, Particle Physics Theory (PPT) and Atomic, Molecular and Quantum Physics (AMQP), deliver impact with commercial benefits both nationally and internationally, complemented by a public engagement programme with a global reach.

Economic impacts are realised by the Department’s Analytical Laser Spectroscopy Unit (ALSU) which, since 1993, has worked with companies developing products eventually sold to customers in the nuclear power industry and military, both in the UK and overseas, and in the global aerospace industry. Computational particle physics work performed by the PPT group has spun-off a computer benchmarking tool, BSMBench, used by several leading software outfits, and has led to the establishment of a start-up company.

The AMQP group’s work on trapping and investigating antihydrogen has generated great media interest and building on this we have developed a significant and on-going programme of public engagement. Activities include the development of a bespoke software simulator (Hands on Antihydrogen) of the antimatter experiment for school students.

Facilities

As a student of the MSc by Research in Nanotechnology (Physics) in the Department of Physics you will have access to the following Specialist Facilities:

Low-energy positron beam with a high field superconducting magnet for the study of

positronium

CW and pulsed laser systems

Scanning tunnelling electron and nearfield optical microscopes

Raman microscope

CPU parallel cluster

Access to the IBM-built ‘Blue C’ Super computer at Swansea University and is part of the shared use of the teraflop QCDOC facility based in Edinburgh

Research

The Physics Department carries out world-leading research in experimental and theoretical physics.

The results of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 show that over 80% of the research outputs from both the experimental and theoretical groups were judged to be world-leading or internationally excellent.

This MSc by Research in Nanotechnology comes under the Nano-physics and the life sciences research area at Swansea. The fundamental understanding of the electronic, structural, chemical and optical properties of materials on the nano-scale is essential for advances in nanotechnology, in particular the development of new devices via the incorporation of novel materials. Advances in experimental physics underpin these developments via characterisation and quantification of quantum phenomena which dominate at these length scales.

The Nanotechnology research concentrates on two main areas: determining properties of materials (e.g., graphene) on the nano-scale using scanning probe based techniques; the development of imaging and laser based spectroscopic techniques to study biological samples (e.g., imaging of cellular components and bacteria).



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The M.Sc. in Medical Physics is a full time course which aims to equip you for a career as a scientist in medicine. You will be given the basic knowledge of the subject area and some limited training. Read more
The M.Sc. in Medical Physics is a full time course which aims to equip you for a career as a scientist in medicine. You will be given the basic knowledge of the subject area and some limited training. The course consists of an intense program of lectures and workshops, followed by a short project and dissertation. Extensive use is made of the electronic learning environment "Blackboard" as used by NUI Galway. The course has been accredited by the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (UK).

Syllabus Outline. (with ECTS weighting)
Human Gross Anatomy (5 ECTS)
The cell, basic tissues, nervous system, nerves and muscle, bone and cartilage, blood, cardiovascular system, respiratory system, gastrointestinal tract, nutrition, genital system, urinary system, eye and vision, ear, hearing and balance, upper limb – hand, lower limb – foot, back and vertebral column, embryology, teratology, anthropometrics; static and dynamic anthropometrics data, anthropometric dimensions, clearance and reach and range of movement, method of limits, mathematics modelling.

Human Body Function (5 ECTS)
Biological Molecules and their functions. Body composition. Cell physiology. Cell membranes and membrane transport. Cell electrical potentials. Nerve function – nerve conduction, nerve synapses. Skeletal muscle function – neuromuscular junction, muscle excitation, muscle contraction, energy considerations. Blood and blood cells – blood groups, blood clotting. Immune system. Autonomous nervous system. Cardiovascular system – electrical and mechanical activity of the heart. – the peripheral circulation. Respiratory system- how the lungs work. Renal system – how the kidneys work. Digestive system. Endocrine system – how hormones work. Central nervous system and brain function.

Occupational Hygiene (5 ECTS)
Historical development of Occupational Hygiene, Safety and Health at Work Act. Hazards to Health, Surveys, Noise and Vibrations, Ionizing radiations, Non-Ionizing Radiations, Thermal Environments, Chemical hazards, Airborne Monitoring, Control of Contaminants, Ventilation, Management of Occupational Hygiene.

Medical Informatics (5 ECTS)
Bio statistics, Distributions, Hypothesis testing. Chi-square, Mann-Whitney, T-tests, ANOVA, regression. Critical Appraisal of Literature, screening and audit. Patient and Medical records, Coding, Hospital Information Systems, Decision support systems. Ethical consideration in Research.
Practicals: SPSS. Appraisal exercises.

Clinical Instrumentation (6 ECTS)
Biofluid Mechanics: Theory: Pressures in the Body, Fluid Dynamics, Viscous Flow, Elastic Walls, Instrumentation Examples: Respiratory Function Testing, Pressure Measurements, Blood Flow measurements. Physics of the Senses: Theory: Cutaneous and Chemical sensors, Audition, Vision, Psychophysics; Instrumentation Examples: Evoked responses, Audiology, Ophthalmology instrumentation, Physiological Signals: Theory Electrodes, Bioelectric Amplifiers, Transducers, Electrophysiology Instrumentation.

Medical Imaging (10 ECTS)
Theory of Image Formation including Fourier Transforms and Reconstruction from Projections (radon transform). Modulation transfer Function, Detective Quantum Efficiency.
X-ray imaging: Interaction of x-rays with matter, X-ray generation, Projection images, Scatter, Digital Radiography, CT – Imaging. Fundamentals of Image Processing.
Ultrasound: Physics of Ultrasound, Image formation, Doppler scanning, hazards of Ultrasound.
Nuclear Medicine : Overview of isotopes, generation of Isotopes, Anger Cameras, SPECT Imaging, Positron Emitters and generation, PET Imaging, Clinical aspects of Planar, SPECT and PET Imaging with isotopes.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging : Magnetization, Resonance, Relaxation, Contrast in MR Imaging, Image formation, Image sequences, their appearances and clinical uses, Safety in MR.

Radiation Fundamentals (5 ECTS)
Review of Atomic and Nuclear Physics. Radiation from charged particles. X-ray production and quality. Attenuation of Photon Beams in Matter. Interaction of Photons with Matter. Interaction of Charged Particles with matter. Introduction to Monte Carlo techniques. Concept to Dosimetry. Cavity Theory. Radiation Detectors. Practical aspects of Ionization chambers

The Physics of Radiation Therapy (10 ECTS)
The interaction of single beams of X and gamma rays with a scattering medium. Treatment planning with single photon beams. Treatment planning for combinations of photon beams. Radiotherapy with particle beams: electrons, pions, neutrons, heavy charged particles. Special Techniques in Radiotherapy. Equipment for external Radiotherapy. Relative dosimetry techniques. Dosimetry using sealed sources. Brachytherapy. Dosimetry of radio-isotopes.

Workshops / Practicals
Hospital & Radiation Safety [11 ECTS]
Workshop in Risk and Safety.
Concepts of Risk and Safety. Legal Aspects. Fundamental concepts in Risk Assessment and Human Factor Engineering. Risk and Safety management of complex systems with examples from ICU and Radiotherapy. Accidents in Radiotherapy and how to avoid them. Principles of Electrical Safety, Electrical Safety Testing, Non-ionizing Radiation Safety, including UV and laser safety.
- NUIG Radiation Safety Course.
Course for Radiation Safety Officer.
- Advanced Radiation Safety
Concepts of Radiation Protection in Medical Practice, Regulations. Patient Dosimetry. Shielding design in Diagnostic Radiology, Nuclear Medicine and Radiotherapy.
- Medical Imaging Workshop
Operation of imaging systems. Calibration and Quality Assurance of General
radiography, fluoroscopy systems, ultrasound scanners, CT-scanners and MR scanners. Radiopharmacy and Gamma Cameras Quality Control.

Research Project [28 ECTS]
A limited research project will be undertaken in a medical physics area. Duration of this will be 4 months full time

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Materials are substances or things from which something is or can be made. Technological development is often based on the development of new materials. Read more
Materials are substances or things from which something is or can be made. Technological development is often based on the development of new materials. Materials research plays an important part in solving challenging problems relating to energy, food, water, health and well-being, the environment, sustainable use of resources, and urbanisation.

An expert in materials research studies the chemical and physical bases of existing and new materials; their synthesis and processing, composition and structure, properties and performance. As an expert in materials research, your skills will be needed in research institutions, the technology industry (electronics and electrotechnical industry, information technology, mechanical engineering, metal industry, consulting), chemical industry, forest industry, energy industry, medical technology and pharmaceuticals.

This programme combines expertise from the areas of chemistry, physics and materials research at the University of Helsinki, which are ranked high in international evaluations. In the programme, you will focus on the fundamental physical and chemical problems in synthesising and characterising materials, developing new materials and improving existing ones. Your studies will concentrate on materials science rather than materials engineering.

Upon graduating from the programme you will have a solid understanding of the essential concepts, theories, and experimental methods of materials research. You will learn the different types of materials and will be able to apply and adapt theories and experimental methods to new problems in the field and assess critically other scientists’ work. You will also be able to communicate information in your field to both colleagues and laymen.

Depending on the study line you choose you will gain in-depth understanding of:
-The synthesis, processing, structure and properties of inorganic materials.
-Modelling methods in materials research.
-The structure and dynamics of biomolecular systems.
-The synthesis, structure and properties of polymers.
-Applications of materials research in industrial applications.
-The use of methods of physics in medicine.

The University of Helsinki will introduce annual tuition fees to foreign-language Master’s programmes starting on August 1, 2017 or later. The fee ranges from 13 000-18 000 euros. Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area, are liable to these fees. You can check this FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees: https://studyinfo.fi/wp2/en/higher-education/higher-education-institutions-will-introduce-tuition-fees-in-autumn-2017/am-i-required-to-pay-tuition-fees/

Programme Contents

In the programme, all teaching is based on the teachers’ solid expertise in the fundamental chemistry and physics of materials. All teachers also use their own current research in the field in their teaching.

Your studies will include a variety of teaching methods such as lectures, exercises, laboratory work, projects and summer schools.

In addition to your major subject, you can include studies in minor subjects from other programmes in chemistry, physics and computer science.

Selection of the Major

At the beginning of your studies you will make a personal study plan, with the help of teaching staff, where you choose your study line. This programme has the following six study lines representing different branches of materials research.

Experimental Materials Physics
Here you will study the properties and processing of a wide variety of materials using experimental methods of physics to characterise and process them. In this programme the materials range from the thin films used in electronics components, future fusion reactor materials, and energy materials to biological and medical materials. The methods are based on different radiation species, mostly X-rays and ion beams.

Computational Materials Physics
In this study line you will use computer simulations to model the structures, properties and processes of materials, both inorganic materials such as metals and semiconductors, and biological materials such as cell membranes and proteins. You will also study various nanostructures. The methods are mostly atomistic ones where information is obtained with atomic level precision. Supercomputers are often needed for the calculations. Modelling research is closely connected with the experimental work related to the other study lines.

Medical Physics
Medical physics is a branch of applied physics encompassing the concepts, principles and methodology of the physical sciences to medicine in clinics. Primarily, medical physics seeks to develop safe and efficient diagnosis and treatment methods for human diseases with the highest quality assurance protocols. In Finland most medical physicists are licensed hospital physicists (PhD or Phil.Lic).

Polymer Materials Chemistry
In this line you will study polymer synthesis and characterisation methods. One of the central questions in polymer chemistry is how the properties of large molecules depend on the chemical structure and on the size and shape of the polymer. The number of applications of synthetic polymers is constantly increasing, due to the development of polymerisation processes as well as to better comprehension of the physical properties of polymers.

Inorganic Materials Chemistry
Thin films form the most important research topic in inorganic materials chemistry. Atomic Layer Deposition (ALD) is the most widely studied deposition method. The ALD research covers virtually all areas related to ALD: precursor synthesis and characterisation, film growth and characterisation, reaction mechanism studies, and the first steps of taking the processes toward applications. The emphasis has been on thin film materials needed in future generation integrated circuits, but applications of ALD in energy technologies, optics, surface engineering and biomaterials are also being studied. Other thin film deposition techniques studied include electrodeposition, SILAR (successive ionic layer adsorption and reaction) and sol-gel. Nanostructured materials are prepared either directly (fibres by electrospinning and porous materials by anodisation) or by combining these or other templates with thin film deposition techniques.

Electronics and Industrial Applications
Sound and light are used both to sense and to actuate across a broad spectrum of disciplines employing samples ranging from red hot steel to smooth muscle fibres. Particular interest is in exploiting the link between the structure and mechanics of the samples. The main emphasis is on developing quantitative methods suitable for the needs of industry. To support these goals, research concentrates on several applied physics disciplines, the main areas being ultrasonics, photoacoustics, fibre optics and confocal microscopy.

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If you have an interest in both the physical aspects of science associated with forces, energy, waves, electrical effects and feel comfortable with mathematics, then our Physics with Mathematics course will suit you. Read more
If you have an interest in both the physical aspects of science associated with forces, energy, waves, electrical effects and feel comfortable with mathematics, then our Physics with Mathematics course will suit you. This particularly suits people who initially feel less confident with the chemical and biological elements of the science curriculum but are willing to teach some mathematics instead. Our course looks at the key ideas which underpin the teaching of Physics, Science and Mathematics in schools today and the way children's understanding of concepts develops.

We offer routes allowing a main specialism from biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics and this physics with mathematics programme for key stages 3 & 4 or 4 & post-16 teaching each requiring applicants with relevant post-16 qualifications. As all science teachers need to show a willingness to contribute significantly to subject teaching outside their main specialism this route allows some of this to come from the teaching of mathematics. As you will not necessarily be expected to enter the course with an expert knowledge of all these areas, therefore top-up and enhancement courses are available through the university both before and during the course.

The PGCE in Physics with Mathematics is offered only on a full-time basis.

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The Department of Philosophy has outstanding research strength in the fields of philosophy of biology, philosophy of psychology and philosophy of cognitive sciences. Read more
The Department of Philosophy has outstanding research strength in the fields of philosophy of biology, philosophy of psychology and philosophy of cognitive sciences.

We are ranked by the Philosophical Gourmet Report as the strongest department in the UK for the philosophy of biology. The department is also home to a European Research Council project on Darwinism and the Theory of Rational Choice, which explores connections between biological and cognitive science research.

This MA builds on these outstanding research strengths. It is intended for graduates of philosophy, psychology and biology who wish to study philosophy of science with an emphasis on the biological and cognitive sciences. The programme focuses on philosophical issues arising from these scientific disciplines. The history of science is studied in terms of the philosophical debate about the nature of scientific method and knowledge.

You will be an active member of the department's flourishing research culture. All students are encouraged to participate in both the weekly departmental research seminar and in the weekly Philosophy and History of Science research seminar, which often features well-known scholars in the field, from Bristol and beyond. The department has strong links with both the School of Experimental Psychology and the School of Biological Sciences, with whom joint workshops and reading groups are organised.

Programme structure

The MA consists of taught components, examined by essay, and a dissertation. You will take six taught units, normally three in each semester.

Core units
-Scientific Epistemology and Methodology
-Philosophical Writing and Research Seminar
-Philosophy of Biology
-Philosophy of Psychology

Optional units can vary each year but may include:
-History of Science
-Philosophy and History of Mathematics
-Philosophy and History of Medicine
-Philosophy of Physics
-Individual, supervised research project

Dissertation
Satisfactory completion of semesters one and two will allow you to progress to writing a dissertation of up to 15,000 words on an approved topic of your choice. The dissertation is your chance to produce an extended piece of philosophical research that can act as preparation for a graduate research degree. You will have supervisory meetings with a member of staff who will also provide feedback on a draft of your work.

Careers

Students who have completed the MA in Philosophy of Biological and Cognitive Sciences have gone on to careers in teaching and science administration. A number of MA graduates pursue further studies in either philosophy or science.

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The master's degree offers students the chance to specialise in the ambit of forensics. It has the following objectives. Read more
The master's degree offers students the chance to specialise in the ambit of forensics. It has the following objectives:
-To provide students with advanced multidisciplinary scientific training in the use of forensics in the fields of chemistry, physics, genetics and statistics so that they receive specialised training in a wide range of scientific disciplines involved in the scientific analysis of evidence from crime scenes or of events or circumstances that are subject to legal proceedings. On completing this training, students will have the knowledge and skills to become members of multidisciplinary teams in their future professional careers.
-To enable students to develop the skills need to interpret evidence from crime scenes using their knowledge of the chemical, physical and biological foundations of the principal techniques in forensic analysis.
-To produce professionals with the competencies needed to carry out evaluations, reports or appraisals for different public and private organisations or to apply their knowledge in laboratories that study problems related to forensic practice.

Student Profile

The master's degree is aimed at students with official university qualifications in experimental sciences, life sciences and related technologies or bachelor's degrees Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Biotechnology, Physics, Geology, Medicine, Veterinary, Pharmacy, Environmental Sciences, Food Science and Technology or Engineering.

The master's degree is also aimed at forensic professionals who wish to study a certain aspect of the discipline in greater depth.

Career Opportunities

Graduates in University Master's Degree in Forensic Genetics, Physics and Chemistry are capable of working in:
-State and regional government civil service
-Scientific police units
-Customs laboratories
-Laboratories (official, private, accredited)
-Consultancy firms
-Self-employment (independent professional practice)

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We offer postgraduate research degrees in Physics at the MPhil and PhD level in all of our major research areas such as Emerging Technology and Materials, Applied Mathematics, and Photoelectron Spectroscopy. Read more
We offer postgraduate research degrees in Physics at the MPhil and PhD level in all of our major research areas such as Emerging Technology and Materials, Applied Mathematics, and Photoelectron Spectroscopy.

We supervise MPhil students whose interests match the expertise we have in our four main research themes.

Condensed matter and nanoscale physics

We research electronic, optical, structural and magnetic properties of novel solid-state materials, particularly novel semi-conductor structures and nanostructured materials such as nanocrystals and nanowires. Theoretical studies use quantum mechanical approaches and involve massively parallel supercomputing.

Our development of new approaches to quantum modelling is changing the size and complexity of systems that can be modelled. Experimental work takes place at synchrotron facilities in Europe and America and related work takes place with colleagues in the Emerging Technology and Materials (ETM) Group in the School of Electrical, Electronic and Computer Engineering.

Biophysics

Our research in biophysics explores the structure and function of cells with the aim of creating artificial life and building machines based on biological parts. Projects include protocell development and the construction of a cyborg robot. An understanding of biological physics is needed that uses techniques including single molecule manipulation, atomic force microscopy and scanning tunnelling microscopy.

Astrophysics

Galaxies and the interstellar medium, the source of the galactic magnetic field and its influence on the structure of the galaxy form the focus of our research in astrophysics. There is also interest in cosmology, particularly the early universe and its origin in the big bang.

Ultrafast optics

Our research focuses on coherent optical control of atomic collisions in ultracold gases by femtosecond laser light for studies of problems in fundamental physics, such as the measurement of time dependence of the fundamental constants of nature. We also research metrological protocols for characterisation of broadband light, specifically those relating to foundational aspects of quantum mechanics and its application.

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We offer an opportunity to train in one of the newest areas of biology. the application of engineering principles to the understanding and design of biological networks. Read more

We offer an opportunity to train in one of the newest areas of biology: the application of engineering principles to the understanding and design of biological networks. This new approach promises solutions to some of today’s most pressing challenges in environmental protection, human health and energy production.

This MSc will provide you with a thorough knowledge of the primary design principles and biotechnology tools being developed in systems and synthetic biology, ranging from understanding genome-wide data to designing and synthesising BioBricks.

You will learn quantitative methods of modelling and data analysis to inform and design new hypotheses based on experimental data. The University’s new centre, SynthSys, is a hub for world-leading research in both systems and synthetic biology.

Programme structure

The programme consists of two semesters of taught courses followed by a research project and dissertation, which can be either modelling-based or laboratory-based.

Compulsory courses:

  • Information Processing in Biological Cells
  • Social Dimensions of Systems and Synthetic Biology
  • Dissertation project
  • Practical Systems Biology
  • Applications of Synthetic Biology
  • Tools for Synthetic Biology

Option courses:

  • Neural Computation
  • Probabilistic Modelling and Reasoning
  • Functional Genomic Technologies
  • Bioinformatics Programming & System Management
  • Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine
  • Statistics and Data Analysis
  • Biobusiness
  • Gene Expression & Microbial Regulation
  • Bioinformatics Algorithms
  • Biological Physics
  • Computational Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Molecular Phylogenetics
  • Next Generation Genomics
  • Drug Discovery
  • Biochemistry A & B
  • Environmental Gene Mining & Metagenomics
  • Economics & Innovation in the Biotechnology Industry
  • Industry & Entrepreneurship in Biotechnology
  • Introduction to Scientific Programming
  • Practical Skills in Biochemistry A & B
  • Mathematical Biology

Career opportunities

The programme is designed to give you a good basis for managerial or technical roles in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries. It will also prepare you for entry into a PhD programme.



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Chemical Biology is an emerging discipline that sits at the interface of traditional chemistry and biology. It draws on the tools and ideas of modern Physical Sciences (e.g. Read more
Chemical Biology is an emerging discipline that sits at the interface of traditional chemistry and biology.

It draws on the tools and ideas of modern Physical Sciences (e.g. Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics and Engineering) and applies these to the solution of biological problems at the molecular level.

It is a discipline that is perfectly poised to address the next great challenge in biological science – to understand how gene products are used in and interact with the cellular environment.

The research element provides physical scientists with the ability to bridge disparate fields and gain the confidence to grapple with biomolecular research in a multidisciplinary environment.

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The Graduate Diploma is designed for graduates whose first degree may be inappropriate for direct entry to an MSc in Physics at a UK university. Read more

The Graduate Diploma is designed for graduates whose first degree may be inappropriate for direct entry to an MSc in Physics at a UK university. Though it may be taken as a free-standing qualification, most students take this programme as a pathway to the MSc. This pathway forms the first year of a two-year programme with successful students (gaining a merit or distinction) progressing onto the MSc Physics in second year.

Key benefits

  • King's College London offers a unique environment for the taught postgraduate study of physics. Our size enables us to provide a welcoming environment in which all our students feel at home. The Physics Department has been built up to its current strength in the last few years, which has allowed us to design a bespoke research department focused in three areas.
  • Particle physics and cosmology is led by Professor John Ellis CBE FRS, who collaborates closely with CERN, and this group provides unique lecture courses, including "Astroparticle Cosmology" as well as "The Standard Model and beyond".
  • The Experimental Biophysics and Nanotechnology research group is a world-leading centre for nanophotonics, metamaterials and biological physics. Here you can study the state of the art in experimental nanoplasmonics, bio-imaging, near-field optics and nanophotonics, with access to the laboratories of the London Centre for Nanotechnology (LCN). You will be offered our flagship module in "Advanced Photonics".
  • Theory and Simulation of Condensed Matter is a group of theoreticians with a critical-mass expertise in many-body physics and highly-correlated quantum systems—magnetism and superconductivity, and world-leading research in condensed matter, particularly in biological and materials physics. The group is a founding member of the prestigious Thomas Young Centre (TYC), the London centre for the theory and simulation of materials.

Description

Students will undertake a total of 120 credits

Course purpose

For students with an undergraduate degree or equivalent who wish to have the experience of one year in a leading UK Physics Department, or who may not be immediately eligible for entry to a higher degree in the UK and who wish to upgrade their degree. If you successfully complete this programme with a Merit or Distinction we may consider you for the MSc programme.

Course format and assessment

The compulsory modules are assessed via coursework. The majority of the other optional modules avaiable are assessed by written examinations.

Career destinations

Many students go on to do a higher Physics degree, work in scientific research, teaching or work in the financial sector.



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The Masters in Biophysical Science has been created to bring excellent science, mathematics and. engineering graduates to a position where they can start with confidence on a wide range of careers. Read more
The Masters in Biophysical Science has been created to bring excellent science, mathematics and
engineering graduates to a position where they can start with confidence on a wide range of careers
in the life sciences. This is in response to the growing need for graduates who can apply their
subject knowledge outside of the traditional boundaries of their discipline.

Course Structure

Each Biophysical Sciences Masters student selects six taught modules from a selection of
fundamental and specialised modules. These modules are designed to provide key knowledge and
skills. Also available to students is the module Communicating Science which will give further
opportunity to develop transferable skills.
Following the taught section of the course an extended research project will be undertaken in a
research laboratory under the supervision of a Durham University Academic with expertise in the
area of biophysical science research. The project will be chosen by the Masters Student from a
selection of projects nominated by Durham Academics. Research projects will allow students to
develop vital research skills and will give first-hand experience of ground-breaking biophysical
science research.

Core Modules

*
•Molecular Cell Biology
•Making Organic Molecules
•Experimental Design and Analysis
•Mathematical Tools
•Practical Course in Basic Biological Techniques

Optional modules

•Protein Crystallography
•Techniques in Cognitive Neuroscience
•Molecular Probes and their Use
•Medicinal Chemistry
•Soft Matter and Biological Physics
•Systems Biology and Bayesian Inference
•Macrobiomolecule Dynamics

Transferrable Skills

•Communicating Science

Research project

•Biophysical science research project

Note *:

All students will take the modules Molecular Cell Biology (B101); Practical Course in Basic Biological
Techniques (B105) and the transferable skills course: Communicating Science. Students with a first
degree in Chemistry, Physics or Mathematics will not take the fundamental module based on their
first degree discipline. They will take Molecular Cell Biology plus two of the remaining three
Fundamental Modules, avoiding the module in the discipline of their first degree. They will also take
three specialised modules. Students with other first degrees will take all four Fundamental Modules
plus two Specialised Modules.

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This academically challenging and career-developing programme focuses on research and development using biological and chemical principles and systems to create new products, services and industries. Read more

This academically challenging and career-developing programme focuses on research and development using biological and chemical principles and systems to create new products, services and industries.

You will employ elements of the developing field of synthetic biology to bring about significant changes and major innovations that address the challenges of rapidly changing human demographics, resource shortages, energy economy transition and the concomitant growth in demand for more and healthier food, sustainable fuel cycles, and a cleaner environment.

Programme structure

You will learn through a variety of activities, including:

  • lectures
  • workshops
  • presentations
  • laboratory work
  • field work
  • tutorials
  • seminars
  • discussion groups and project groups
  • problem-based learning activities

You will attend problem-based tutorial sessions and one-to-one meetings with your personal tutor or programme director.

You will carry out research at the frontier of knowledge and can make a genuine contribution to the progress of original research. This involves carrying out project work in a research laboratory, reviewing relevant papers, analysing data, writing reports and giving presentations.

Compulsory courses:

  • Applications of Synthetic Biology
  • Tools for Synthetic Biology
  • Social Dimensions of Systems & Synthetic Biology
  • Environmental Gene Mining & Metagenomics
  • Research Project Proposal
  • MSc Project and Dissertation

Option courses:

  • Biochemistry A & B
  • Introduction to Scientific Programming
  • Commercial Aspects of Drug Discovery
  • Stem Cells & Regenerative Medicine
  • Biological Physics
  • Enzymology & Biological Production
  • Next Generation Genomics
  • Machine Learning & Pattern Recognition
  • Drug Discovery
  • Biophysical Chemistry
  • Bioinformatics Programming & System Management
  • Economics & Innovation in the Biotechnology Industry
  • BioBusiness
  • Molecular Modelling & Database Mining
  • Industry & Entrepreneurship in Biotechnology
  • Practical Skills in Biochemistry A & B
  • Functional Genomic Technologies
  • Information Processing in Biological Cells
  • Data Mining & Exploration
  • Gene Expression & Microbial Regulation
  • Bioinformatics
  • Principles of Industrial Biotechnology

Learning outcomes

By the end of the programme you will have gained:

  • a strong background knowledge in the fields underlying synthetic biology and biotechnology
  • an understanding of the limitations and public concerns regarding the nascent field of synthetic biology including a thorough examination of the philosophical, legal, ethical and social issues surrounding the area
  • the ability to approach the technology transfer problem equipped with the skills to analyse the problem in scientific and practical terms
  • an understanding of how biotechnology relates to real-world biological problems
  • the ability to conduct practical experimentation in synthetic biology and biotechnology
  • the ability to think about the future development of research, technology, its implementation and its implications
  • a broad understanding of research responsibility including the requirement for rigorous and robust testing of theories and the need for honesty and integrity in experimental reporting and reviewing

Career opportunities

You will enhance your career prospects by acquiring current, marketable knowledge and developing advanced analytical and presentational skills, within the social and intellectual sphere of a leading European university.

The School of Biological Sciences offers a research-rich environment in which you can develop as a scientist and entrepreneur.



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Society urgently needs experts with a multidisciplinary education in atmospheric and Earth System sciences. Climate change and issues of air quality and extreme weather are matters of global concern, but which are inadequately understood from the scientific point of view. Read more
Society urgently needs experts with a multidisciplinary education in atmospheric and Earth System sciences. Climate change and issues of air quality and extreme weather are matters of global concern, but which are inadequately understood from the scientific point of view. Not only must further research be done, but industry and business also need environmental specialists with a strong background in natural sciences. As new regulations and European Union directives are adopted in practice, people with knowledge of recent scientific research are required.

Upon graduating from the Programme you will have competence in:
-Applying experimental, computational and statistical methods to obtain and analyse atmospheric and environmental data.
-Knowledge applicable to solving global challenges such as climate change, air pollution, deforestation and issues related to water resources and eutrophication.
-Making systematic and innovative use of investigation or experimentation to discover new knowledge.
-Reporting results in a clear and logical manner.

The University of Helsinki will introduce annual tuition fees to foreign-language Master’s programmes starting on August 1, 2017 or later. The fee ranges from 13 000-18 000 euros. Citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in the area, are liable to these fees. You can check this FAQ at the Studyinfo website whether or not you are required to pay tuition fees: https://studyinfo.fi/wp2/en/higher-education/higher-education-institutions-will-introduce-tuition-fees-in-autumn-2017/am-i-required-to-pay-tuition-fees/

Programme Contents

The six study lines are as follows:
Aerosol Physics
Aerosol particles are tiny liquid or solid particles floating in the air. Aerosol physics is essential for our understanding of air quality, climate change and production of nanomaterials. Aerosol scientists investigate a large variety of phenomena associated with atmospheric aerosol particles and related gas-to-particle conversion using constantly improving experimental, theoretical, model-based and data analysis methods. As a graduate of this line you will be an expert in the most recent theoretical concepts, measurement techniques and computational methods applied in aerosol research.

Geophysics of the Hydrosphere
Hydrospheric geophysics studies water in all of its forms using physical methods. It includes hydrology, cryology, and physical oceanography. Hydrology includes the study of surface waters such as lakes and rivers, global and local hydrological cycles as well as water resources and geohydrology, the study of groundwater. Cryology focuses on snow and ice phenomena including glacier mass balance and dynamics, sea ice physics, snow cover effects and ground frost. Physical oceanography covers saline water bodies, focusing on describing their dynamics, both large scale circulation and water masses, and local phenomena such as surface waves, upwelling, tides, and ocean acoustics. Scientists study the hydrosphere through field measurements, large and small scale modelling, and formulating mathematical descriptions of the processes.

Meteorology
Meteorology is the physics of the atmosphere. Its best-known application is weather forecasting, but meteorological knowledge is also essential for understanding, predicting and mitigating climate change. Meteorologists study atmospheric phenomena across a wide range of space and time scales using theory, model simulations and observations. The field of meteorology is a forerunner in computing: the development of chaos theory, for example, was triggered by the unexpected behaviour of a meteorological computer model. Meteorology in ATM-MP is further divided into dynamic meteorology and biometeorology. Dynamic meteorology is about large-scale atmospheric dynamics, modelling and observation techniques, whereas biometeorology focuses on interactions between the atmosphere and the underlying surface by combining observations and modelling to study the flows of greenhouse gases and energy with links to biogeochemical cycles, for example. As a graduate of the meteorology line, you will be an expert in atmospheric phenomena who can produce valuable new information and share your knowledge.

Biogeochemical Cycles
Biogeochemistry studies the processes involved in cycling of elements in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems by integrating physics, meteorology, geophysics, chemistry, geology and biology. Besides natural ecosystems, it also studies systems altered by human activity such as forests under different management regimes, drained peatlands, lakes loaded by excess nutrients and urban environments. The most important elements and substances studied are carbon, nitrogen, sulphur, water and phosphorus, which are vital for ecosystem functioning and processes such as photosynthesis. Biogeochemistry often focuses on the interphases of scientific disciplines and by doing so, it also combines different research methods. It treats ecosystems as open entities which are closely connected to the atmosphere and lithosphere. You will thus get versatile training in environmental issues and research techniques. As a graduate of this line you will be an expert in the functioning of ecosystems and the interactions between ecosystems and the atmosphere/hydrosphere/lithosphere in the context of global change. You will have knowledge applicable for solving global challenges such as climate change, air pollution, deforestation and issues related to water resources and eutrophication.

Remote Sensing
Remote sensing allows the collection of information about the atmosphere, oceans and land surfaces. Various techniques are applied for monitoring the state and dynamics of the Earth system from the ground, aircraft or satellites. While Lidar and radar scan from the surface or mounted on aircraft, instruments on polar orbiting or geostationary satellites permit measurements worldwide. In atmospheric sciences remote sensing has found numerous applications such as observations of greenhouse and other trace gases, aerosols, water vapour, clouds and precipitation, as well as surface observations, for example of vegetation, fire activity, snow cover, sea ice and oceanic parameters such as phytoplankton. Synergistic satellite data analysis enables the study of important processes and feedback in the climate system. Remote sensing advances climate research, weather forecasting, air quality studies, aviation safety and the renewable energy industry. As a graduate of the remote sensing line you will have broad expertise in the operational principles of remote sensing instruments as well as methods of data collection, analysis and interpretation.

Atmospheric Chemistry and Analysis
Atmospheric chemistry studies the composition and reactions of the molecules that make up the atmosphere, including atmospheric trace constituents and their role in chemical, geological and biological processes, including human influence. The low concentrations and high reactivity of these trace molecules place stringent requirements on the measurement and modelling methods used to study them. Analytical chemistry is the science of obtaining, processing, and communicating information about the composition and structure of matter and plays an essential role in the development of science. Environmental analysis consists of the most recent procedures for sampling, sample preparation and sample analysis and learning how to choose the best analytical methods for different environmental samples. Physical atmospheric chemistry studies focus on the reaction types and reaction mechanisms occurring in the atmosphere, with emphasis on reaction kinetics, thermodynamics and modelling methods. As a graduate of this line you will have understanding of the chemical processes of the atmosphere and the latest environmental analytical methods, so you will have vital skills for environmental research.

Programme Structure

The basic degree in the Programme is the Master of Science (MSc). The scope of the degree is 120 credits (ECTS). As a prerequisite you will need to have a relevant Bachelor’s degree. The possible major subjects are Physics, Meteorology, Geophysics, Chemistry, and Forest Ecology. The programme is designed to be completed in two years. Studies in ATM-MP consist of various courses and project work: lecture courses, seminars, laboratory work and intensive courses.

Your first year of studies will consist mainly of lecture courses. During the second year, you must also participate in the seminar course and give a presentation yourself. There is also a project course, which may contain laboratory work, data analysis, or theoretical or model studies. You will have to prepare a short, written report of the project. There are also several summer and winter schools as well as field courses for students in the Programme. Many of the courses take place at the Hyytiälä Forestry Field Station in Southern Finland. The intensive courses typically last 5–12 days and include a concise daily programme with lectures, exercises and group work.

Career Prospects

There is a global need for experts with multidisciplinary education in atmospheric and environmental issues. Governmental environmental agencies need people who are able to interpret new scientific results as a basis for future legislation. Industry, transportation and businesses need to be able to adapt to new regulations.

As a Master of Science graduating from the Programme you will have a strong background of working with environmental issues. You will have the ability to find innovative solutions to complex problems in the field of environmental sciences, climate change and weather forecasting. Graduates of the Programme have found employment in Meteorological Institutes and Environmental Administration in Finland and other countries, companies manufacturing instrumentation for atmospheric and environmental measurements and analysis, and consultancy companies. The Master's degree in ATM-MP also gives you a good background if you intend to proceed to doctoral level studies.

Internationalization

The Programme offers an international study environment with more than 30% of the students and teaching staff coming from abroad.

The ATM-MP is part of a Nordic Nordplus network in Atmosphere-Biosphere Studies, which gives you good opportunities to take courses currently in fourteen Nordic and Baltic universities. There are also several Erasmus agreements with European universities. The PanEurasian Experiment (PEEX) project provides you with opportunities to carry out part of your studies especially in China and Russia.

Research Focus

All the units teaching in the Programme belong to the National Centre of Excellence (FCoE) in Atmospheric Science – From Molecular and Biological processes to the Global Climate (ATM), which is a multidisciplinary team of the Departments of Physics, Forest Sciences and Chemistry at the University of Helsinki, the Department of Applied Physics at the University of Eastern Finland (Kuopio) and the Finnish Meteorological Institute.

The main objective of FCoE ATM is to quantify the feedbacks between the atmosphere and biosphere in a changing climate. The main focus of the research is on investigating the following topics:
1. Understanding the climatic feedbacks and forcing mechanisms related to aerosols, clouds, precipitation and biogeochemical cycles.
2. Developing, refining and utilising the newest measurement and modelling techniques, from quantum chemistry to observations and models of global earth systems.
3. Creating a comprehensive understanding of the role of atmospheric clusters and aerosol particles in regional and global biogeochemical cycles of water, carbon, sulphur, nitrogen and their linkages to atmospheric chemistry.
4. Integrating the results in the context of understanding regional and global Earth systems.

In addition to the research focus of FCoE, current research in hydrospheric geophysics at Helsinki University has an emphasis on cryology, with a focus on the effect of aerosols on Indian glaciers, the impact of climate change on the Arctic environment, the dynamics of the Austfonna ice cap in Svalbard, and the winter season in the coastal zone of the Baltic Sea.

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