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Physics with Astronomy & Space Science (PAS1)

Undergraduate (Level 8 NFQ, Credits 240)
Academic Year 2024/2025
Internships Available
Study Abroad
Sustainable Development Goals
Duration:
4 Year(s)
Next Intake:
2024/2025 September
General Entry Requirements (A-Level)

ABB / BBBD /
BBB + D AS Level

General Entry Requirements (IB)

29

Subject Requirements (Mathematics)

GCSE A / A Level D

(or AS Level C)
IB SL 6 / HL 4

Subject Requirements (Laboratory Science)

GCSE A / A Level D

(or AS Level C)
IB SL 6 / HL 4

Country Specific Entry Requirements:
Visit the UCD Global Undergraduate Entry Requirements webpage.

Curricular information is subject to change.

Physics with Astronomy & Space Science seeks to apply the fundamental laws of Physics to explain observations of the Universe, made using ground and spacebased instrumentation. The degree is primarily a Physics degree subject with specific modules on the applications of Physics and will develop your skills in problem solving, data analysis, computation, and experimental techniques.

Information on all our courses including pathways, internships and careers information is available in the UCD Science Undergraduate Courses Entry 2024 Brochure (PDF).

About this Course

Physics with Astronomy & Space Science is one of the degree subjects available through the Physics stream in the common entry Science course. Students study similar modules for all degree subjects in the Physics stream in first year and will study modules for a minimum of two degree subjects in second year. At the end of second year, students choose their degree major. Assuming students meet all the academic requirements in first and second year, students are guaranteed a degree subject from the stream they are studying in second year. We do our best to ensure that students go on to study their top degree subject choice. As we offer plenty of degree subjects in each stream, students have a number of similar degree subjects to choose from as their degree major. For more information on choosing a degree major at the end of Second Year, visit the Physics stream page.

This is a sample set of modules that a Physics with Astronomy & Space Science student could study each year in UCD. 

First Year
Scientific Enquiry • Introduction to Applied & Computational Mathematics • Calculus in the Mathematical and Physical Sciences • Frontiers of Physics • Foundations of Physics • Astronomy & Space Science • Fields, Waves and Light • Optional Modules • Elective Module 

Second Year
Exploring the Solar System • Calculus of Several Variables • Introductory Quantum Mechanics • Vector Calculus • Methods for Physicists • Electronics & Devices • + modules for 1 other Science Subject • Elective Modules 

Third Year
Physics, Astronomy & Space Science Lab • Classical Mechanics+Relativity • Quantum Mechanics • Electromagnetism • Optics & Lasers • Option Modules • Elective modules 

Fourth Year
Research Project • Physics, Astronomy & Space Science Lab • Astronomy Field Trip (Students participate in a week-long field trip where they gain hands-on experience at a professional observatory) • Applied Quantum Mechanics • High Energy Particle Physics • Nuclear Physics • Galaxies, Orvational Cosmology & the Interstellar Medium • Option modules 

Timetables & Assessment
Each student will have their own timetable based on their individual module selection. This is a full-time course and classes may include lectures, practicals and tutorials, depending on the subjects. Students will also be expected to study independently (autonomous student learning). Assessment varies with each module but may comprise continuous assessment of practicals, written exams and online learning activities.

Below is a list of all modules offered for this degree in the current academic year. Click on the module to discover what you will learn in the module, how you will learn and assessment feedback profile amongst other information.

Incoming Stage 1 undergraduates can usually select an Elective in the Spring Trimester. Most continuing undergraduate students can select up to two Elective modules (10 Credits) per stage. There is also the possibility to take up to 10 extra Elective credits.

Module ID Module Title Trimester Credits
Stage 3 Core Modules
     
PHYC30170 Physics with Astronomy and Space Science Laboratory I 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

20

PHYC30020 Classical Mechanics and Relativity Autumn

5

PHYC30030 Quantum Mechanics Autumn

5

PHYC30100 Stellar Astrophysics & Astronomical Techniques Autumn

5

PHYC30070 Electromagnetism Spring

5

Stage 3 Core Modules
     
Stage 3 Options
     
ACM20030 Computational Science Autumn

5

ACM30220 Partial Differential Equations Autumn

5

PHYC20100 Thermo & Stat Physics Autumn

5

PHYC30050 Condensed Matter Physics Autumn

5

PHYC30080 Optics & Lasers Spring

5

PHYC30090 Nuclear Physics Spring

5

STAT20100 Inferential Statistics Spring

5

Stage 3 Options
     
Stage 4 Core Modules
     
PHYC40600 Physics with Astronomy and Space Science Laboratory II 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

15

PHYC40890 Astronomy Field Trip (10) 2 Trimester duration (Aut-Spr)

10

PHYC40020 Applied Quantum Mechanics Autumn

5

PHYC40080 High Energy Particle Physics Autumn

5

PHYC40030 Galaxies, Observational Cosmology & the Interstellar Medium Spring

5

Stage 4 Core Modules
     
Stage 4 Options
     
ACM40750 Gen Relativity & Black Holes Autumn

5

PHYC30050 Condensed Matter Physics Autumn

5

PHYC40120 General Relativity & Cosmology Autumn

5

PHYC40470 Computational Biophysics and Nanoscale Simulations Autumn

5

PHYC40930 Ultrafast Soft X-ray Photonics Autumn

5

PHYC41070 Techniques in Biophysics Autumn

5

ACM30200 Mathematical Fluid Dynamics I Spring

5

ACM41040 GR and Gravitational Waves Spring

5

PHYC30080 Optics & Lasers Spring

5

PHYC30090 Nuclear Physics Spring

5

PHYC40110 Medical Physics (Selected Topics) Spring

5

PHYC40210 Applied Optics Spring

5

PHYC40360 Theoretical Astrophysics Spring

5

PHYC40650 Advanced Statistical Physics Spring

5

PHYC40800 Quantum Field Theory Spring

5

Students can apply to study for a trimester or year in third year in a number of universities worldwide including University of California, Berkeley; University of California, Santa Cruz; San Jose State University, and University of Melbourne.

The UCD School of Physics typically offers a number of research studentships working on a range of projects within the school. These are suitable for undergraduates currently studying physics or a related discipline, and aim to give students the opportunity to gain research experience.



More information about the internship module and application process.


The Physics with Astronomy & Space Science degree subject is accredited by the Institute of Physics, which positions graduates to go into the rapidly growing space sector. There are opportunities for well-qualified graduates to work with major space agencies, such as ESA and NASA, or with space companies. Graduates are also qualified to go into areas such as medical physics, meteorology, semiconductor technology, energy, ICT and finance. Graduates may apply for MSc programmes such as Space Science & Technology. They may also pursue research through PhD programmes in Ireland and abroad in many fields of physics.

The following advice is for Non-EU applicants. For Irish/EU/UK students, please apply via MyUCD.

The following entry route(s) are available:
 
Science: Physics (includes Theoretical/Astronomy & Space Science) Stream (PYS2)
Undergraduate Degree (Non EU)
Entry in Sep 2024
Full Time - 4 Year(s) Apply from Oct 2023 Apply

By studying an undergraduate degree in the Science programme, you will be joining a global community of scientists and will be taught by world-class researchers at the forefront of research in one of the most innovative and diverse programmes in Ireland, encompassing biology, sustainability, chemistry, physics, earth sciences, mathematics and computer science. Faculty who teach on the Science programme draw on their research to provide an inclusive and equitable education for scientists who will be leaders and innovators in a range of industries and research institutes working towards a sustainable and equitable future. 

The curriculum is informed by the following research:

  • Exploring and understanding the processes that drive and can mitigate and enable adaptation to global change from evolutionary, environmental and social perspectives at levels ranging from molecular and genetic to individual, ecosystem and landscape

  • Translating fundamental discoveries to a greater understanding of health and disease, with the ultimate aim of informing novel drug discovery

  • Performing fundamental and applied research with a focus on current societal challenges including the energy transition, environmental change, geohazards and access to natural resources

The College of Science offers a range of degree subjects within the Science and Sustainability common entry courses that embed sustainability principles and are working towards the following Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):

SDG

  • Good Health and Well-being (SGD 3)

  • Quality Education (SDG 4)

  • Affordable and Clean Energy (SGD 7)

  • Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure (SDG 9)

  • Sustainable Cities and Communities (SGD 11)

  • Responsible Consumption and Production (SGD 12)

  • Life Below Water (SDG 14)

  • Life on Land (SDG 15)

The programmes at UCD are designed to equip students with the best education in their chosen field, while at the same time embedding the UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs) in their education where most relevant.

"Choosing to study UCD Science allowed me to explore all aspects of Physics during my first two years of study. I chose to specialise in Physics with Astronomy & Space Science because it places me firmly on the known universe’s frontiers. Every day I step into the lab, I do not know where I might travel in the universe and what I might learn. UCD Science has given me opportunities to follow my passions from working on research using world-class telescopes to introducing me to the UCD Science Society where I’ve made friends that I consider family. When I graduate, the toolbox of skills Science DN200 has provided will truly let me reach for the stars and pursue a career or further studies in the space sector."

Owen Johnson, Student

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Physics with Astronomy & Space Science (PAS1)

Undergraduate (Level 8 NFQ, Credits 240)