Skip to Content

detail

MSci Applied Mathematics and Physics

Academic Year 2020/21

A programme specification is required for any programme on which a student may be registered. All programmes of the University are subject to the University's Quality Assurance processes. All degrees are awarded by Queen's University Belfast.

Programme Title MSci Applied Mathematics and Physics Final Award
(exit route if applicable for Postgraduate Taught Programmes)
Master in Science
Programme Code AMA-MSCI UCAS Code GFC3 HECoS Code 100403 - Mathematics - 50
100425 - Physics - 50
ATAS Clearance Required No
Mode of Study Full Time
Type of Programme Undergraduate Master Length of Programme 4 Academic Year(s) Total Credits for Programme 480
Exit Awards available

INSTITUTE INFORMATION

Teaching Institution

Queen's University Belfast

School/Department

Mathematics & Physics

Framework for Higher Education Qualification Level 
www.qaa.ac.uk

Level 7

QAA Benchmark Group
www.qaa.ac.uk/quality-code/subject-benchmark-statements

Mathematics, Statistics and Operational Research (2019)

Accreditations (PSRB)

Institute of Mathematics and its Applications

Date of most recent Accreditation Visit 06-06-14

REGULATION INFORMATION

Does the Programme have any approved exemptions from the University General Regulations
(Please see General Regulations)

No

Programme Specific Regulations

Students will not be permitted to register for Stage 2 unless they have passed all core Level 1 modules.

Transfers to Other Pathways
At the end of Stage 2, Students may transfer to other Pathways (BSc, or if they have achieved a weighted average of at least 55%, before rounding MSci), provided they have passed all the compulsory modules on the Pathway to which they are transferring up to that time of transfer.

Progression
At the end of Stages 2 and 3, students require an overall weighted average of at least 55% before rounding to progress to the next stage.
At the end of stages 2 and 3, students with an overall weighted average of less than 55% before rounding will be required to transfer to the BSc degree.

To progress from stage 3 to stage 4 students must maintain a weighted average of at least 55% before rounding
Students who fail to maintain this average will be required to transfer to the BSc pathway. They may be awarded a BSc degree if they meet the criteria for this award.

Students with protected characteristics

N/A

Are students subject to Fitness to Practise Regulations

(Please see General Regulations)

No

EDUCATIONAL AIMS OF PROGRAMME

- Demonstrate appropriate understanding of the basic body of knowledge of applied mathematics and physics, and appropriate skill in manipulation of this knowledge, including in its application to problem solving

- Apply core applied mathematics and physics concepts in loosely defined contexts, through the judicious use of analytical and computational methods, tools and techniques and the judicious use of logical arguments

- Analyse problems through their formulation in terms of mathematics and physics

- Communicate mathematical and physical arguments to a range of audiences in both written and oral form

- Interpret the physical world/universe and how it works through application of fundamental postulates and assumptions.

- Demonstrate mathematical, computational, practical, problem solving, and personal skills which can be exploited by a variety of employers, such as those involved in industrial or academic research and development, engineering, education, health care, software development, business and finance.

LEARNING OUTCOMES

Learning Outcomes: Cognitive Skills

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Apply mathematical knowledge logically and accurately in the solution of examples and complex problems

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

By their nature, mathematics and physics have to be presented logically. The lectures and model examples to problems provide exemplars of this logical structure. They also identify the tools needed to address certain problems. Tutorial problems and assignments offer the students opportunities to develop their logical reasoning skills, to develop skills in organising their reasoning and application of mathematical and physical principles, and to develop skills in the selection of techniques.

Methods of Assessment

The assessment of these skills is implicit in most methods of assessment, including exams, coursework, practicals and project work. The overall degree of success in any assessment depends to a large extent on students’ mastery of logical and accurate methods of solution, well-organised structure of answers, and the identification of the appropriate solution method.

Conduct an advanced experimental or theoretical physics investigation under supervision

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

The project modules will offer the students the opportunity to identify what it takes to carry out an extended experimental or theoretical physics study. These skills are also developed through extended assignments in a wide range of modules across the entire spectrum

Methods of Assessment

These skills are assessed mainly through project reports and oral presentations on project work of increasing complexity, culminating in the final project

Analyse complex problems and situations within physics in mathematical terms, and identify the appropriate physics concepts and mathematical tools and techniques for their solution

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

By their nature, mathematics and physics have to be presented logically. The lectures and model examples to problems provide exemplars of this logical structure. They also identify the tools needed to address certain problems. Tutorial problems and assignments offer the students opportunities to develop their logical reasoning skills, to develop skills in organising their reasoning and application of mathematical and physical principles, and to develop skills in the selection of techniques.

Methods of Assessment

The assessment of these skills is implicit in most methods of assessment, including exams, coursework, practicals and project work. The overall degree of success in any assessment depends to a large extent on students’ mastery of logical and accurate methods of solution, well-organised structure of answers, and the identification of the appropriate solution method.

Organise their work in a structured manner

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

By their nature, mathematics and physics have to be presented logically. The lectures and model examples to problems provide exemplars of this logical structure. They also identify the tools needed to address certain problems. Tutorial problems and assignments offer the students opportunities to develop their logical reasoning skills, to develop skills in organising their reasoning and application of mathematical and physical principles, and to develop skills in the selection of techniques.

Methods of Assessment

The assessment of these skills is implicit in most methods of assessment, including exams, coursework, practicals and project work. The overall degree of success in any assessment depends to a large extent on students’ mastery of logical and accurate methods of solution, well-organised structure of answers, and the identification of the appropriate solution method.

Learning Outcomes: Knowledge & Understanding

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Demonstrate understanding of the fundamental concepts and techniques of calculus, analysis, algebra, linear algebra and numerical methods

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Lectures provide the core method for the presentation of the knowledge required for students to be successful. Each lecture-based module has associated tutorials, and, where appropriate, laboratory and practical classes to assist the student with the development of understanding of the core contents, including its application. Assignments are provided to assist further development of understanding. These assignments are marked and returned to students typically within one week with individual feedback. Model solutions to these assignments are made available to students for additional self-study.

Methods of Assessment

Formal exams, class tests, small reports, presentations

Use these fundamental concepts and techniques in a range of application areas, including, for example, partial differential equations, mechanics, numerical analysis, optics, quantum mechanics, electromagnetism and statistical mechanics.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Lectures provide the core method for the presentation of the knowledge required for students to be successful. Each lecture-based module has associated tutorials, and, where appropriate, laboratory and practical classes to assist the student with the development of understanding of the core contents, including its application. Assignments are provided to assist further development of understanding. These assignments are marked and returned to students typically within one week with individual feedback. Model solutions to these assignments are made available to students for additional self-study.

Methods of Assessment

Formal exams, class tests, small reports, presentations

Application of the fundamental concepts is also of importance to any of the project modules, as deeper understanding will result in higher marks

Demonstrate knowledge and conceptual understanding of the theory and application of core physics concepts in the areas of classical and relativistic mechanics, quantum physics, condensed matter, electromagnetism, optics and thermodynamics.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Lectures provide the core method for the presentation of the knowledge required for students to be successful. Each lecture-based module has associated tutorials, and, where appropriate, laboratory and practical classes to assist the student with the development of understanding of the core contents, including its application. Assignments are provided to assist further development of understanding. These assignments are marked and returned to students typically within one week with individual feedback. Model solutions to these assignments are made available to students for additional self-study.

Methods of Assessment

Examinations, class tests, written and online assignments, tutorial performance, written reports, oral presentations

Understand and appreciate the importance of mathematical and physics logic

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Lectures provide the core method for the presentation of the knowledge required for students to be successful. Each lecture-based module has associated tutorials, and, where appropriate, laboratory and practical classes to assist the student with the development of understanding of the core contents, including its application. Assignments are provided to assist further development of understanding. These assignments are marked and returned to students typically within one week with individual feedback. Model solutions to these assignments are made available to students for additional self-study.

Methods of Assessment

Formal exams, class tests, small reports, presentations
This appreciation is of particular importance to the project modules, as such logic is critical to arrive at appropriate conclusions

Demonstrate understanding, and application of this understanding, within a range of more specialist optional topics within applied mathematics

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Lectures provide the core method for the presentation of the knowledge required for students to be successful. Each lecture-based module has associated tutorials, and, where appropriate, laboratory and practical classes to assist the student with the development of understanding of the core contents, including its application. Assignments are provided to assist further development of understanding. These assignments are marked and returned to students typically within one week with individual feedback. Model solutions to these assignments are made available to students for additional self-study.

Methods of Assessment

Formal exams, class tests, small reports, presentations

Demonstrate knowledge and understanding in selected specialist physics topics, and an awareness of current trends and developments at the frontiers of these subjects

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Lectures provide the core method for the presentation of the knowledge required for students to be successful. Each lecture-based module has associated tutorials, and, where appropriate, laboratory and practical classes to assist the student with the development of understanding of the core contents, including its application. Assignments are provided to assist further development of understanding. These assignments are marked and returned to students typically within one week with individual feedback. Model solutions to these assignments are made available to students for additional self-study.

Methods of Assessment

Examinations, assignments, written reports/essays, oral presentations, and oral review meetings

Learning Outcomes: Subject Specific

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Demonstrate understanding of logical mathematical arguments, including mathematical proofs and their construction, and apply these arguments appropriately.
Demonstrate understanding of core physics concepts, and apply these concepts appropriately.

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Each lecture-based module has associated tutorials, and, where appropriate, practical classes to assist the student with the development of understanding and application of logical mathematical arguments, physical concepts and/or analytic/numerical mathematical techniques. Assignments also assist the development of understanding in these areas.
The project modules allow students to spend time on a more extended problem, which will enable a more in-depth development of mathematical and/or physics arguments and application of mathematical and/or physics techniques

Methods of Assessment

Assessment is mainly through formal examination and class tests for lecture-based modules. This assessment is supplemented through written reports and oral presentations. For project modules, the latter is the main method of assessment.

Apply a wide range of analytic and/or numerical mathematical techniques and physics concepts within well-defined mathematics and physics contexts, and to formulate and solve mathematics and physics problems in more loosely defined contexts

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Each lecture-based module has associated tutorials, and, where appropriate, practical classes to assist the student with the development of understanding and application of logical mathematical arguments, physical concepts and/or analytic/numerical mathematical techniques. Assignments also assist the development of understanding in these areas.
The project modules allow students to spend time on a more extended problem, which will enable a more in-depth development of mathematical and/or physics arguments and application of mathematical and/or physics techniques

Methods of Assessment

Assessment is mainly through formal examination and class tests for lecture-based modules. This assessment is supplemented through written reports and oral presentations. For project modules, the latter is the main method of assessment.

Use a range of mathematical software for the solution of mathematical and/or physics problems

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Basic skills are developed through the mathematical modelling module, the professional skills modules and the computer algebra module. Numerical analysis has associated computer practicals, using appropriate specialist software.
n the project modules, further opportunities to use mathematical software may be available.

Methods of Assessment

These skills are primarily assessed through reports and presentations associated with work carried out using mathematical software.

Present mathematical and physical findings through oral and written means to a range of audiences

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Communication through reports and/or oral presentations forms a compulsory part of many modules across the entire range of modules offered.

Methods of Assessment

These skills are primarily assessed through compulsory reports and presentations within many modules.

Perform dimensional analysis and order of magnitude estimates

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Discussed and demonstrated in lectures and tutorials. Routinely practiced in other modules.

Methods of Assessment

Assignments, tutorial performance

Plan, execute and report the results of an experiment or investigation, and compare results critically with predictions from theory and/or experiment

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Laboratory experiments, computational projects and research projects

Methods of Assessment

Assignments, written reports, oral presentations, oral review meetings

Plan and execute a substantial experimental or theoretical investigation in a specific research area of physics including critical and quantitative assessment of their own work and the work of others

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

One-to one supervision of substantial project performed individually or as part of a team in a current area of mathematics or physics research.

Methods of Assessment

Online safety tests, risk assessments, literature reviews, oral presentations, laboratory performance, oral review meeting, written report

Learning Outcomes: Transferable Skills

On the completion of this course successful students will be able to:

Adopt an analytic approach to problem solving

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Analytic thinking is part of any module in mathematics and physics, and is therefore cultivated through the tutorials, practicals and assignments associated with each lecture-based module, including all the project components.

It is also a critical skill developed during the project modules

Methods of Assessment

Analytic thinking is embedded implicitly in every assessment within mathematics and physics.
Problem solving skills will be assessed through an extended range of project work, culminating in the final-year project modules

Search for, evaluate and reference relevant information from a range of sources

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Lectures/workshops on how to use and reference and review library books, scientific papers, and internet sources. Re-enforced at all levels through supervision during labs, research projects and group projects, and formative and summative feedback for student coursework.

Methods of Assessment

Written reports and essays, oral presentations (for individual and group projects), literature reviews

Use computer technology efficiently for a variety of purposes

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Basic computer modelling skills are developed through the mathematical modelling module, the professional skills modules and the computer algebra module. Numerical analysis has associated computer –oriented tasks, where students can develop skills in the use of appropriate specialist software.
In the project modules, further opportunities to use mathematical software may be available.
Written reports develop skills in the use of word-processing software, while the presentations can develop skills in the use of presentation software

Methods of Assessment

Computer modelling skills are primarily assessed through reports and presentations associated with work carried out using numerical software.
The main test in Computer Algebra takes place through a direct assessment of their use of appropriate software
Computer skills in word-processing and presentation development are assessed implicitly in the project and presentation assessment

Communicate mathematical and physics ideas and concepts

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Any assignment or coursework or project work involves the communication of mathematical and/or physics ideas, and these skills are thus embedded indirectly in any module.
Any report or presentation will provide an explicit learning opportunity, where the increase in complexity at higher levels will provide a means for communication skill development

Methods of Assessment

The assessment of communication skills takes place through the reports and presentations, where higher skill levels will result in higher overall marks

Present findings through written reports

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Any assignment or coursework or project work involves the communication of mathematical and/or physics ideas, and these skills are thus embedded indirectly in any module.
Any report or presentation will provide an explicit learning opportunity, where the increase in complexity at higher levels will provide a means for communication skill development

Methods of Assessment

The assessment of communication skills takes place through the reports and presentations, where higher skill levels will result in higher overall marks

Present findings through oral communication

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Any assignment or coursework or project work involves the communication of mathematical and/or physics ideas, and these skills are thus embedded indirectly in any module.
Any report or presentation will provide an explicit learning opportunity, where the increase in complexity at higher levels will provide a means for communication skill development

Methods of Assessment

The assessment of communication skills takes place through the reports and presentations, where higher skill levels will result in higher overall marks

Manage their time

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Project work associated with modules at each Level are the prime method for development. The increase in level of complexity of such projects throughout the programme, in line with student’s overall development, will implicitly develop the students’ skills in project management.

Laboratory experiments, research projects, group projects, and personal tutoring/supervision/mentoring

Methods of Assessment

These skills are assessed implicitly as part of any project component to a module. A higher level of skill in time management will provide student with greater opportunity to present a well thought-through report, which allows the students to better highlight their achievements.

Oversee extended projects, either individually or as part of a team

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Project work associated with modules at each Level are the prime method for development. The increase in level of complexity of such projects throughout the programme, in line with student’s overall development, will implicitly develop the students’ skills in project management.

Laboratory experiments, research projects, group projects, and personal tutoring/supervision/mentoring

Methods of Assessment

These skills are assessed implicitly as part of any project component to a module. A higher level of skill in time management will provide student with greater opportunity to present a well thought-through report, which allows the students to better highlight their achievements.

Appreciate and demonstrate the importance of health and safety, risk assessment and scientific ethics

Teaching/Learning Methods and Strategies

Safety training courses, lectures, workshops, personal supervision

Methods of Assessment

Project/lab risk assessments, online safety tests, assignments

MODULE INFORMATION

Stages and Modules

Module Title Module Code Level/ stage Credits

Availability

Duration Pre-requisite

Assessment

S1 S2 Core Option Coursework % Practical % Examination %
Foundation Physics PHY1001 1 40 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 0% 30% 70%
Scientific Skills PHY1004 1 20 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 70% 30% 0%
Analysis and Calculus MTH1001 1 30 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 0% 10% 90%
Numbers, Vectors and Matrices MTH1002 1 30 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Fluid Mechanics AMA2005 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 20% 0% 80%
Numerical Analysis AMA2004 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 50% 0% 50%
Classical Mechanics AMA2001 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 20% 0% 80%
Quantum & Statistical Physics PHY2001 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 40% 0% 60%
Physics of the Solid State PHY2002 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 40% 0% 60%
Astrophysics I PHY2003 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 20% 40% 40%
Electricity, Magnetism and Optics PHY2004 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 40% 0% 60%
Atomic and Nuclear Physics PHY2005 2 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 40% 0% 60%
Introduction to Partial Differential Equations MTH2002 2 10 YES 6 weeks Y YES 60% 0% 40%
Linear Algebra & Complex Variables MTH2001 2 30 YES YES 18 weeks Y YES 20% 0% 80%
Employability for Physics PHY2010 2 0 YES 10 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Quantum Theory AMA3002 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Tensor Field Theory AMA3003 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 20% 0% 80%
Partial Differential Equations AMA3006 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 20% 0% 80%
Investigations AMA3020 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 80% 20% 0%
Computer Algebra PMA3008 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 0% 100% 0%
Financial Mathematics AMA3007 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 20% 10% 70%
Calculus of Variations & Hamiltonian Mechanics AMA3013 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Mathematical Modelling in Biology and Medicine AMA3014 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Quantum Mechanics and Relativity PHY3001 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 20% 0% 80%
Advanced Solid State Physics PHY3002 3 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 20% 0% 80%
Astrophysics II PHY3003 3 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 20% 0% 80%
Advanced Electromagnetism and Optics PHY3004 3 20 YES 12 weeks Y YES 20% 0% 80%
Nuclear and Particle Physics PHY3005 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 20% 0% 80%
Physics in Medicine PHY3006 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 50% 0% 50%
Professional Skills PHY3008 3 20 YES YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 70% 0%
Computational Projects PHY3009 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Discrete Mathematics AMA3015 3 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 20% 0% 80%
Advanced Quantum Theory AMA4001 4 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 0% 20% 80%
Advanced Mathematical Methods AMA4003 4 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Project AMA4005 4 40 YES YES 24 weeks N YES 80% 20% 0%
Practical Methods for Partial Differential Equations AMA4006 4 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Information Theory AMA4009 4 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Mathematical Methods for Quantum Information Processing AMA4021 4 20 YES 12 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Physics Research Project PHY4001 4 60 YES 12 weeks N YES 70% 30% 0%
Ionising Radiation in Medicine PHY4003 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Medical Radiation Simulation PHY4004 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Planetary Systems PHY4005 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
High Energy Astrophysics PHY4006 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Laser Physics PHY4007 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Plasma Physics PHY4008 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Physics of Materials Characterisation PHY4009 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%
Ultrafast Science PHY4011 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 30% 0% 70%
Cosmology PHY4016 4 10 YES 6 weeks N YES 100% 0% 0%

Notes

At Stage 1 Students must take the four compulsory modules

At Stage 2 Students must take an approved combination of six Level 2 modules normally chosen from those listed below in Applied Mathematics, Pure Mathematics, and Physics. The choice of modules must include MTH2001, MTH2002, PHY2001 and PHY2004. PHY2010 is compulsory for students wishing to take a placement year.

At Stage 3 Students must take an approved combination of six Level 3 modules listed below, normally chosen from Applied Mathematics, Pure Mathematics or Physics. The choice must include either PMA3008 or PHY3009 and either PHY3008 or AMA3020. Of the other four modules, two modules must be chosen from those available in Applied Mathematics and two from those available in Physics. The choice must include either AMA3002 or PHY3001, but not both.

Stage 4. Students must take either AMA4005 or PHY4001 and two additional modules from those offered in Applied Mathematics. In addition, students taking AMA4005 must take four further half modules (40 CATS) from those offered in Physics, whereas students taking PHY4001 must take two half modules (20 CATS) from those offered in Physics.