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Unit information: Physics Project 333 in 2015/16

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Unit name Physics Project 333
Unit code PHYS39330
Credit points 30
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Gersen
Open unit status Not open

120 credit points at Level I/5 of any BSc single honours or joint honours Physics programme.



School/department School of Physics
Faculty Faculty of Science

Description including Unit Aims

This project is an opportunity for students to take a topic in physics, either experimental or theoretical, and carry out an investigation, usually associated with one of the research areas in the department. Experimental projects are usually done in pairs. The project is student-led and leads to a substantial report detailing the project, how it was approached and the results obtained.


The project is a substantial exercise where the student learns and demonstrates initiative and independence, bringing a diversity of knowledge and skills to bear on a particular topic. It is also intended that the student will gain insight into tackling real problems rather than simply acquisition of knowledge.

Intended Learning Outcomes

The student will:

  • learn how to bring a diversity of knowledge and skills to bear on a specific problem,
  • learn how to identify skills and knowledge needed to carry a project forward and how to acquire them,
  • learn how to present material clearly and concisely both verbally and in manuscript,
  • produce a clear and coherent report representing a significant academic document about the topic.

Teaching Information

Experimental projects are laboratory-based while theoretical projects will be library-based. Both involve a supervisor and an assessor, both of whom will be involved during the duration of the project. Generally the student and supervisor will meet weekly.

Assessment Information

Assessment is through an interim report at the end of the first semester and the final report of up to 10,000 words at the start of the summer term. The assessor will interview the student at the end of the unit. All reports are produced independently, even if the project is done in pairs. The assessment is based on day-to-day performance throughout the project, the quality of the report and the results and analysis. Marks will be awarded for technical ability, diligence and motivation and an understanding of the science of the project. The marks will be agreed upon by the assessor and the supervisor.

Reading and References

This will depend on the specific project but may include textbooks, research journals, previous project reports and web-based material.