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MPhys versus Bachelors

  1. Sep 26, 2013 #1

    this is a question that is specifically about the UK educational system, but maybe there are some parallels with the US.

    I am currently studying physics at university (and loving it) at the Bachelor's level. I know my goals may shift as I go through my degree but right now I think i'd love to pursue further education ie a masters and hopefully a Phd.

    I have the opportunity to switch to the MPhys course which requires an extra year and research project + (potentially) the chance to spend a summer attached to one of the research groups at my university.

    This all sounds great to me but i am concerned that getting a Bsc then an Msc is the more traditional route and that some may not consider the MPhys equivalent to holding both. When the question of who wants to join the MPhys arises formally, I will of course speak to my academic advisor, but i'd be really grateful if there was anyone here that could share their experiences.

  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 26, 2013 #2
    Hi there,

    I am currently in the 4th year of a physics MSci (Essentially the same as MPhys) so hopefully I can help. In my experience MSci/MPhys are equally well received in PhD applications as an
    MSc in the uk. The minimum requirement by research councils in the uk is 2.1 BSc. The only trouble you may find is if you want to go to Europe where a separate MSc is the norm and these last 2 years. Also if you want to go to America for PhD you will have to do a masters when you start grad school at any rate.

    Financially for me the MSci/MPhys is a no brainer. You get full funding plus a student loan. For an MSc you'll have to find money for the course fees and money to live on yourself. There are scholarships and bursaries available but nothing guaranteed. I don't know you but I wouldn't be able to pluck £15k-£20k out of thin air.
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2013
  4. Sep 26, 2013 #3
    Thank you for your response.

    I think that I would rather finish my education in the UK and I presume that if you have achieved a Phd, whether you had a Masters or an MPhys to get there is immaterial. I should think the work you did and skills you gained that were sufficient for you to achieve a Phd are what counts. Working abroad after this sounds incredibly interesting.

    I'm glad you brought up the issue of funding as I haven't given it much thought yet. But like you, I can't just rustle up the money to pay for a degree, I have to take a loan. You've given me something to think about.

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