Is a physics master’s worth it?

  • Helena Kudiabor
  • Apr 21 2023

Completing a physics master’s degree is a great way to continue your education, and delve deeper into a subject you’re passionate about. But what things should you consider when deciding to pursue a physics master’s?


What physics master’s are there?

There’s a range of physics master’s degrees available for students interested in postgraduate study. The Physics MSc (Master’s of Science) is the common physics master’s offered. This course allows students to gain a greater understanding of topics discussed in undergraduate physics courses. If you’d prefer a less general master’s degree, a number of universities offer more specific master’s courses. For example, Astrophysics MSc, Nuclear Decommissioning MSc and Planetary Science MSc are just a couple of physics master’s degrees on offer.

Things to consider:


It’s no secret that doing a master’s can be expensive. As a rough guide, most physics master’s degrees cost between £10,000 and £15,000. Remember that a master’s only lasts one year, so you’ll only pay this fee once. This is still an immense cost and, sadly, financial worries can put many students off completing a master’s.

However, there are many different sources of master’s funding. The government provides home students up to £11,836, to help with the cost of tuition fees and general living expenses. Many universities and independent organisations offer scholarships and bursaries, to encourage students to pursue their dreams. Thus, if you’d like to complete a master’s, but are worried about funding, it’s worth doing some research into loans and scholarships.

Career progression:

While having a master’s won’t automatically secure you a job, students who completed postgraduate study are more likely to have a high-skilled role, compared to students who just did an undergraduate degree. 

While a master’s is essential for some roles (physics teacher or lecturer), a master’s is still valuable in fields when it’s not required. Completing a master’s shows you have in-depth knowledge in physics, and can persevere through a long period of study. Completing a master’s is also essential for PhD study, and can also help those looking to make a career change.

So, is a physics master’s worth it?

Yes! In an increasingly competitive job market, employers are looking for attributes that make a candidate stand out. Having a physics master’s degree shows you have drive and determination, and specialist knowledge in the industry.

Bear in mind that the value of your master’s will be weakened if you don’t make the most of the experience. Network with professionals, join societies, stay on top of your academics: these are all things that will elevate your CV!