Aberystwyth University / Prifysgol Aberystwyth
Studying at Aberystwyth University allows you to specialise in an area of physics you’re particularly passionate about. At undergraduate level, students can choose from degrees like sustainable electrical and electronic engineering; engineering physics and space science and robotics. Lectures are supplemented with practical lessons and independent research inside the university’s material physics, space instrumentation and planetary research labs. You’ll learn from lecturers who are undertaking collaborative research in space physics, materials physics and quantum physics, completing groundbreaking projects like studying the sun’s activities and developing new engineering instruments and materials. To help you prepare for the working world, second year students even complete a dedicated careers planning and skills development module.
Aberystwyth University is committed to promoting Welsh language and culture, and their plan to do so (known as Addewidion Aber) is the most comprehensive of any university in Wales. The programme allows students to secure bilingual work experience, a guaranteed welsh-speaking personal tutor, support for improving your Welsh skills and money if you complete at least five credits in Welsh.
Bridgend College / Coleg Penybont
“People-centred” “Inspirational” “Innovative”: some of the values that Bridgend College seeks to uphold. And these values are paying off, with the college being named as TES UK FE college of the year in 2019.
With four campuses across Wales, Bridgend College has over 7,500 students studying at a variety of levels. The university’s entry-level courses require no qualifications, providing students with fundamental skills like employability and independent living. Similarly, their 10 week community college courses are an excellent way to learn a new skill cheaply and quickly, with all courses free for Wales residents.
If you’re interested in the application of physics theories to our modern world, Bridgend College has a number of courses for you. A HND in Mechanical Engineering (with the option to continue studies and gain a degree), a Diploma in Transport Maintenance and an award in Computer Aided Design are just a few of the hands-on courses the college offers. All courses have been developed alongside industry professionals, so you’ll leave the college prepared for the working world.
Outside of classes, the college encourages their students to participate in campus life. Students can be elected as academic representatives, student ambassadors and even student governors. You’ll also be encouraged to join societies (eo society for sustainability, clwb cymraeg for welsh language) or even start your own.
Cardiff University / Prifysgol Caerdydd
A Russell Group university, Cardiff’s research is well-renowned, with their staff discussing their findings (everything from astronomy to diamond research) in outlets like the New York Times and BBC News. Beyond their academics, student satisfaction is a major priority at Cardiff University, with the university scoring an average of 90% over the past five years in the National Student Satisfaction Survey. The university is also committed to eradicating gender inequalities in STEM, and have received a number of awards (Athena Swan, Project Juno Champion Status) in recognition of this. They’re also passionate about sharing their research with the general public, with staff and students visiting Welsh primary schools with their telescopes to discuss science.
Some of the physics degree offerings at Cardiff University include a general physics degree, astronomy and medical physics. Students learn core skills in physics, maths and computing, with theory-based lectures supplemented with weekly lab and programming classes. Graduates have utilised the transferable skills and professional placements the degree offers to secure roles in UK and international universities, with Rolls Royce and the European Space Agency.
Swansea University / Prifysgol Abertawe
Swansea University’s beachside campus is the perfect place for you to prepare for your physics lectures. In lectures, you’ll learn fundamental physics concepts and maths techniques, which will help you understand specialised topics like lasers and medical physics. Virtual lab sessions and practical skills will allow you to refine your skills. The university even offers workshops and one-to-one sessions providing academic support, revision techniques and english language support.
Furthermore, studying at Swansea allows you to be part of a stellar research team. Swansea University’s physics department aligns many of their research projects with the United Nations’ sustainable development goals. For example, their work reforming science and technology education in welsh schools aligns with goal 4 (quality education) and their development of non-invasive tests for early detection of bowel cancer refers to goal 3 (good health and wellbeing). Students can even complete a summer internship or final year project at CERN.