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BSc (Honours) Physics - Learning outcomes

Educational aims

This qualification aims to give you:
  • a life-long interest in physics through modules that are accessible to people with of all educational backgrounds
  • an understanding of core physics concepts and processes that underpin a wide range of phenomena in the natural and manufactured worlds
  • the ability to use mathematics as a language for analysing and explaining physical-science phenomena and as a tool for solving problems in physics and the wider physical sciences
  • an understanding of how scientific knowledge develops, and an appreciation of the limits of knowledge in physics
  • support and guidance to develop as an independent learner.

Learning outcomes

Knowledge and understanding

On completion of this qualification, you’ll have knowledge and understanding of:

  • the fundamental concepts, principles, theories and language used in the scientific discipline of physics, and the role of physics in the world around us
  • accuracy, precision and an ability to recognise the potential uncertainty and ambiguity in the concept of physics and the limits of scientific knowledge
  • physics, informed by research or literature at the forefront of the discipline.

Cognitive skills

On completion of this qualification, you’ll be able to:

  • use and apply conceptual understanding of physics to plan and implement strategies, devise and sustain arguments and solve problems in familiar and unfamiliar contexts
  • identify information needs and gather, interpret, critically analyse and synthesise scientific information and data from a range of different sources, media and scientific literature presented in a variety of ways including texts, tables, graphs, diagrams, equations and mathematical derivations
  • apply the methods and techniques you’ve learned, to review, consolidate and extend your knowledge and understanding; and to critically evaluate relevant aspects of current scientific research and initiate and carry out projects.

Practical and/or professional skills

On completion of this qualification, you’ll be able to:

  • conduct practical investigations in a responsible, safe and ethical manner taking proper account of risk assessment and health and safety regulations
  • obtain, record, collate and analyse data derived from practical investigations and interpret and report their significance in light of underlying theory, practical issues and relevant information from other sources
  • initiate, design, conduct and report on investigations that may involve the acquisition of primary or secondary data
  • take personal responsibility to identify goals and organise your tasks effectively, recognising the necessity for continuing development personally, professionally and in your studies.

Key skills

On completion of this qualification, you’ll be able to:

  • prepare, process, interpret and present data to communicate scientific information, arguments and ideas in the area of physics accurately and effectively using written, visual and numerical forms in a style that suits purpose and audience
  • select and apply quantitative skills appropriate to level and context
  • select, access and exploit a wide range of digital practices including tools and resources to retrieve, use, create, analyse and share data, information and knowledge as appropriate
  • work effectively with others to explore aspects of physics, enhance your learning and achieve joint outcomes.

Teaching, learning and assessment methods

You’ll acquire knowledge and understanding throughout each stage of the degree by studying specially prepared teaching materials that we’ve created, referencing the most recently available scientific research. You’ll use a variety of learning resources, which could include:

  • web-based materials
  • computer-aided learning packages
  • online forums
  • directed reading
  • self-assessment questions.

You’ll work independently with the teaching materials, supported by your tutor in a variety of ways: predominantly online, although some modules may offer optional face-to-face tutorials. You’ll also be encouraged to benefit from collaborative learning – supported by online forums, by email, or by conferencing software.

You’ll further develop your understanding of the acquisition, interpretation and analysis of data and scientific papers through practical work and the independent project work at Stage 3. Practical work is an important component of science – we’ll introduce you to a range of scientific methods pertinent to the discipline of physics. Some modules will also include group work and offer opportunities to interact with other students.

Assessment will be by a combination of tutor-marked assignments (with problem-solving responses or answers ranging from short to essay-length and to project reports) and computer-marked assignments (multiple-choice questions). Written tutor feedback on assignments will provide you with individual tuition and guidance. Each module will conclude with a final examination or end-of-module assessment.