Nuclear and particle physicists try to understand Nature at the most fundamental level, including astrophysics and cosmology. The research is both theoretical and experimental, and the technology that makes the experiments possible is also used in many other fields such as engineering, finance and medicine. The Master Programme in Physics, specialising in Nuclear and Particle Physics, gives you the opportunity to learn this physics and the theoretical and experimental methods that are used by researchers. There is a very strong connection to research, with research groups that participate in the major physics experiments in the world.
Physics at Uppsala University covers the entire length scale from subatomic strings to the whole universe, with forefront research across all sub-branches of physics — from research on elementary particles and materials, the structure of the earth and its atmosphere, to space and the properties of the universe. The Department of Physics and Astronomy at Uppsala University is ranked No. 36 in the world according to the recent Shanghai ranking which makes it the highest ranked physics department in all of Scandinavia.
At the Ångström laboratory at Uppsala University, physicists collaborate on questions regarding energy, elementary particles, materials, space physics and astronomy. At the Geocentrum in Uppsala, researchers use physical principles to study and understand the earth, its weather and climate. Geocentrum is also the home for the Swedish National Seismic Network which monitors earthquakes in Sweden and worldwide. These and other existing collaborations generate a creative environment for both teaching and research.
Why this programme?
The Master Programme in Physics, specialising in Nuclear and Particle Physics, is a broad programme for students interested in the very frontline of fundamental physics where we aim at understanding the structure of matter at the subatomic level and applications of this research. This involves both experimental and theoretical nuclear physics and particle physics. Faculty members in Uppsala are involved in theoretical research on the Standard Model and beyond and in experimental research in Higgs physics with the Atlas detector at the LHC, neutrino physics with the IceCube detector at the South Pole, strong interaction physics with the PANDA, KLOE-2 and BES III experiments, and nuclear structure physics with the AGATA experiment.
A wide range of courses are available, including accelerator physics and technology such as for radiation detectors for research and medical applications, advanced nuclear physics, advanced particle physics, quantum field theory, symmetry and group theory, quantum chromodynamics, and effective field theories. More basic courses are also available, including special relativity, electrodynamics and quantum mechanics. All courses are taught in English.
When you have successfully completed the program you will have a solid background both for employment in industry in a wide variety of engineering, data analysis and software development jobs, and to begin PhD studies in nuclear or particle physics or in other fields of physics.
The first 1.5 years of the program consists mostly of courses and short projects. The last semester is a Master’s thesis project. You will then have the opportunity to do a Master’s thesis under the supervision of one of the faculty or research staff in the nuclear or particle physics divisions, possibly in connection with a company outside of the university. Topics that we offer can range from detector development, over experimental data analysis or simulations of experiments, to theoretical research. There is a very strong international component to our research with weekly meetings with our international collaborators and daily exchange of information within project groups.
The programme has a very strong connection to research in the nuclear and particle physics divisions, which is internationally highly competitive. The research in our groups is highly collaborative, and during the thesis you will be integrated in a research group.
The programme leads to a Master of Science (120 credits) with Physics as the main field of study. After one year of study it may also be possible to obtain a Master of Science (60 credits).
The Master Programme in Physics, specialising in Nuclear and Particle Physics, is a very broad programme for students interested in nuclear physics and/or experimental particle physics. The faculty at Uppsala are involved in research in Higgs physics with the Atlas detector at the LHC, neutrino physics with the IceCube detector at the South Pole, and QCD physics with the PANDA, KLOE-2 and BES III experiments. The results from these experiments are used to test many different aspects of the standard model.
Most course work is done in the first year. A wide range of courses are available for the students, including those in accelerator physics and technology, advanced nuclear physics, quantum field theory and quantum chromodynamics. More basic courses are also available, including those in special relativity, electrodynamics and quantum mechanics.
A large part of the second year is devoted to a degree project. There are a variety of projects open to the students, usually based on one of the experiments the group is actively engaged in. The projects can involve data analysis and simulation, or can be more directed toward instrumentation. There is also the possibility of doing a more theoretical project, for example on the structure of hadrons and predictions for their properties, or interpretation of LHC data to test or find discrepancies with the standard model.
Instruction consists of lectures, teacher-supervised tuition, and guidance in conjunction with laboratory work. The forms of examination vary depending on the course content and design. Final exams are more common for theoretical courses, although many tutors have gone over to continuous examination during the course, such as group discussions and hand-in exercises. The programme takes place in Uppsala.
The teachers are active researchers and the courses closely follow current developments in physics.
After graduating from the Master Programme in Physics, specialising in Nuclear and Particle Physics, you will have a very versatile and solid background in fundamental physics and its applications. You will be very well prepared to go on to become a PhD student in these, or related, fields. But you will also have great opportunities for jobs in industry or government. Our alumni can be found in a wide variety of jobs in, for example, engineering, data analysis and software development, in fields such as medical technology/medical physics, “big data”, the energy sector, finance, or telecom. For a physicist with such a broad education, the opportunities are endless.
With a Bachelor’s degree that is not in physics (e.g. engineering, mathematics), you may or may not qualify for our Master programme. You must have passed physics courses worth at least 75 credits (out of 180 credits), i.e. 1.25 years of full-time physics courses (out of three years). Before applying, verify that you meet this requirement.
Requirements: Academic requirements A Bachelor's degree, equivalent to a Swedish Kandidatexamen, from an internationally recognised university. Also required is 75 credits in physics.
Language requirements All applicants need to verify English language proficiency. This is normally attested by an internationally recognised test such as TOEFL or IELTS with the following minimum scores:
IELTS: an overall mark of 6.5 and no section below 5.5
TOEFL: Paper-based: Score of 4.5 (scale 1–6) in written test and a total score of 575. Internet-based: Score of 20 (scale 0–30) in written test and a total score of 90
a total appraisal of quantity and quality of previous university studies; and
a statement of purpose (1 page).
Tuition fee-paying students and non-paying students are admitted on the same grounds but in different selection groups.
If you are not a citizen of a European Union (EU) or European Economic Area (EEA) country, or Switzerland, you are required to pay application and tuition fees. Fees cover application and tuition only and do not cover accommodation, academic literature or the general cost of living. Read more about fees.