MSc in Quantum Fields and Fundamental Forces
Academic year 2021-22: The QFFF MSc course will begin on schedule in the Autumn. We hope to have as much in-person teaching as possible, retaining the format of the course and the connections between students and staff, while building in flexibility to incorporate online teaching where necessary.
The Theoretical Physics Group runs one of Europe's leading MSc courses in theoretical physics. It covers all aspects of fundamental physics, from quantum field theory and string theory to cosmology and quantum gravity, and brings students to the frontiers of current research in these areas. The course is designed to give a solid foundation for PhD studies in theoretical physics, and the skills it provides can also be valuable for other careers. It can be taken immediately after an undergraduate degree, and it is also suitable for those wishing to return to physics after working in other fields.
The 12-month full-time course, which can also be taken part-time over two years, attracts around forty students annually. Sixteen full-length lecture courses, of which students choose eight for examination, occupy the year up to June. Many of these courses are often also taken by PhD students from Imperial and other London colleges and by visiting European exchange students. They are followed by two weeks of short courses on topics of current interest. The students then spend the summer working on a supervised project in a specialist area. This can involve original research and leads to the writing of a dissertation.
The course leads to a full MSc degree with 90 ECTS credits, satifying the requirements for a European PhD programme under the Bologna accord. Many students have gone on to do a PhD either at Imperial College or at another major university, sometimes in theoretical physics and sometimes in other areas.
The Theoretical Physics Group at Imperial College works closely with research groups throughout the theoretical physics community and has considerable experience (and success) in preparing graduates of the course for PhD study in this and related fields, including mathematics as well as physics. In addition, graduates of the course gain mathematical skills that are in great demand in with employers in other areas of physics, mathematics and business.
- Information for Current Students (including courses and timetables)
- MSc QFFF Handbook 2021-22
- QFFF MSc Handbook 2020-21 Appendix
- Programme Specification QFFF
The entry requirement for the course is a first class undergraduate degree (BSc or MSci) in physics or mathematics, assuming it has sufficient theoretical physics content. We can also consider degrees in other fields, if they are supplemented with an MSc or postgraduate diploma course in physics.
Foreign applicants can find some information about the required grades here. Note, however, that our MSc is significantly more selective than many other Masters courses, and therefore the requirements for research students are better guide for what grades you will need. Also, note that these are only guidelines, and satisfying them does not guarantee a place on the course. Details of language requirements are available here.
There is no strict deadline, but we recommend you apply before the end of June, but we will also consider later applications. The applications are processed as they arrive, normally within six weeks. Note that you can apply before your have finished your undergraduate degree. In that case we will make a conditional offer which details the grades you will need in order to register for the course. Similarly, you do not need to have passed the language test before applying, only to register.
Some scholarships are available through the College or from external organisations. The College Postgraduate Prospectus has a lot of other useful information on living in London, costs etc. including the current tuition fees. A map of the Process for Imperial MSc Scholarships 2017-18 is available but also see notes on scholarship selection process for full information on scholarships.
For more details, please contact the admissions tutor Professor Jonathan Halliwell.