Getting started

Many prospective undergraduates ask us if there is anything they should be reading before joining us to start their studies in the autumn. Whilst it is not necessary to read anything in preparation, our teaching staff have put together this list of podcasts, videos and books that they enjoy and that they think will be of interest to you.

Book recommendations

Want to know what books our lecturers like? Here's a list of some of their favourites from mind-expanding reads on the science of physics and popular science page turners to accounts of the discoveries and events that changed our understanding of the world around us.

Our physics favourites
The First Three Minutes by Steven Weinberg
The Quark And the Jaguar by Murray Gell-mann
In Search Of Schrodingers Cat by John Gribbin
Storm In A Teacup: The Physics of Everyday Life by Helen Czerski
Six Easy Pieces by Richard Feynman
The Wonders Of Physics by Andrey Varlamov and Lev Aslamazov
Just Six Numbers: The Deep Forces That Shape The Universe by Martin Rees
Light And Colour In The Outdoors by Marcel Minnaert
Soft Matter: The Stuff That Dreams Are Made Of by Roberto Piazza
The New Cosmic Onion: Quarks And The Nature Of The Universe by Frank Close
We Have No Idea: A Guide To The Unknown Universe by Cham and Whiteson
Classical Mechanics: The Theoretical Minimum by Hrabovsky and Susskind
Our science picks
Sustainable Energy: Without The Hot Air by David MacKay
Superior: The Return Of Race Science by Angela Saini
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan
The AI Does Not Hate You by Tom Chivers
Big Data: Does Size Matters? by Timandra Harkness
Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous by Steven Strogatz
Hello World: Being Human In The Age Of Algorithms by Hannah Fry
What If by Randall Munroe
Information Is Beautiful by David McCandless
The history of science
Longitude by Dava Sobel
The First Three Minutes by Steven Weinberg
The Making Of The Atomic Bomb by Russell Rhodes
A Short History Of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson
Code Girls: The Untold Story Of The American Women Code Breakers Of WWII by Mundy
Revealing The Universe: The Making of the Chandra X-ray Observatory by Wallace Tucker
Mission Moon 3-D: Reliving The Great Space Race by David Eicher and Brian May
Red Moon Rising: Sputnik and the Rivalries that Ignited the Space Race by Brzezinski

First year textbook

Pick up a copy of our first year physics text book Physics for Scientists and Engineers with Modern Physics by Paul Tipler and Gene Mosca.

Practise your python

Learning some python will be useful throughout your degree, so why not get a head start?

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