Sound interesting?

Benefit from our Institute of Physics accredited courses, state-of-the-art physics teaching laboratories and our observatory - one of the largest, best-equipped teaching observatories in the UK enabling you to make real astronomical observations.

Physics and astronomy have been taught in Preston for over 190 years. We trace our heritage back to Jeremiah Horrocks in 1639. He made the first successful prediction and observation of a Transit of Venus from central Lancashire. These all make us one of the best universities for physics in the UK.

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Study Physics

REF Results 2021

At UCLan, our research informs the teaching and course content of our programmes. In the latest Research Excellence Framework (REF), we are proud that 90% of Physics research submitted rated as world-leading and internationally excellent overall (4/3-star). The REF is a national assessment by the government of our research quality taking place every seven years.

Discover our Physics REF submission

Why study Physics at university?

  • 92% overall student satisfaction on our Physics courses (National Student Survey, 2022). 
  • Benefit from Alston Observatory - one of the largest, best-equipped teaching observatories with £200,000 recent investment in the most powerful modern telescope available in the UK. The observatory’s 20+ telescopes are used weekly by Year 1 students on all degrees.
  • Physics and Astronomy is ranked 2nd in the North West for research intensity (CUG, 2022). Research intensity is a measure of the amount of staff involved in high-quality research in the university.

Come and visit us

Attend our Open Day and discover why our campus is the perfect place for you. You can ask current students about their experiences, speak to academics and get a feel for life at UCLan.

Book an Open Day

Careers in Physics and Astronomy

Graduates of physics and astrophysics are amongst the most employable in the world and are in particularly high demand for technical and business sectors, where analytical and mathematical skills are at a premium. Graduates have found employment in industry, government research institutes, overseas laboratories and observatories, financial institutions, teaching and scientific journalism.

Need help applying for university?

Apply to study one of our courses and take the next step towards your future career. When you're ready to apply, read our guidance to help you apply to university.

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Explore Physics and Astronomy facilities

Gain practical skills in our specialist laboratory facilities including nuclear physics, optics, quantum physics, laser physics, spectroscopy and astrophysics, and much more. Explore the cosmos from our very own teaching observatory Alston Observatory - one of the largest, best equipped in the UK.

Meet the team