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  • Study Type

    Full time & Part time available

  • Subject Areas


  • Start Date

    September, October

  • Course Duration

    1 year full time, 2 years part time

  • Course Type


  • Course Fees


  • Last Updated

    30 January 2018

Course content

The environmental impact from the use of fossil fuels and the uncertainties in their sources of supply has led to many alternative energy sources being investigated. But of these, only nuclear fission power is at present sufficiently developed to provide an economically viable alternative to fossil fuels.

This programme began in 1956 with the build of the first nuclear reactor in Britain. Since then we have continually updated the areas of study and degree of specialisation to reflect the increasing sophistication of the field. At the same time we have maintained the overall breadth of the course, because we feel this allows new entrants to the field to gain a perspective that will be of continuous help in their future careers.

Course details

The taught element from September to May consists of 180 credits. You will also undertake a 60-credit research project which may be undertaken within the industry.

In the autumn and spring semesters, you will study all of your taught modules. In the summer you will work on your own research project chosen from a wide range of topics in the field. This project may be conducted at the University, but more frequently in recent years we have arranged for projects to be undertaken within industry, giving students an opportunity for direct interaction and enhancing their employment prospects.

Studentships are sponsored by the nuclear industry in the UK, and these provide excellent and effective entry routes into careers in this stimulating field for physicists, mathematicians, metallurgists or engineers.

Related links

This programme is also available as a 2-year part-time course.

Learning and teaching

This programme covers a wide range of the skills required to work in the nuclear industry and is co-taught with world-leading academic staff from different Schools within the University.

Learning is via lectures and practical sessions, supported by field trips and industry seminars.

A variety of assessment methods are used, including laboratory exercises, written coursework, case study reports, oral presentations and standard examinations.


This programme is a response to the current skills shortage in this area and trains high quality graduates for the nuclear industry. This is a growing sector and the demand for graduates will increase resulting in an excellent potential or rewarding careers. The research element of the programme also equips our graduates to go on to further study for a PhD.

University Careers Network

Preparation for your career should be one of the first things you think about as you start university. Whether you have a clear idea of where your future aspirations lie or want to consider the broad range of opportunities available once you have a Birmingham degree, our Careers Network can help you achieve your goal.

Our unique careers guidance service is tailored to your academic subject area, offering a specialised team (in each of the five academic colleges) who can give you expert advice. Our team source exclusive work experience opportunities to help you stand out amongst the competition, with mentoring, global internships and placements available to you. Once you have a career in your sights, one-to-one support with CVs and job applications will help give you the edge.

If you make the most of the wide range of services you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.

Visit the Physics and Technology of Nuclear Reactors - MSc page on the University of Birmingham website for more details!






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