BSc in Physics

physics students working on machinery

Physics aims to understand the behaviour of matter and energy. Modern life is built on physics knowledge - from watches to computers and cars.

UC offers a choice of physics and astronomy courses designed to cater for students with a range of backgrounds and interests. We offer courses if you plan to be an engineer, or if you have biological or environmental interests, as well as courses if you plan to be a physicist or astronomer.

We also offer a cultural paper that will give non-physicists some appreciation of the revolutions in physics and astronomy. The largest group of students who take physics at Canterbury do so because Physics (along with Mathematics and Chemistry) is an essential background for their future job as an engineer or as a physical scientist.

We also offer two courses unique within New Zealand - Astronomy and Medical Physics.

Physics is a broad discipline encompassing everything from building huge laser equipment to creating tiny nanoelectric devices. Modern physics provides a framework for understanding and contributing to major advances in technology and our graduates find employment in a huge variety of industries.

Physics study pathways

From 300 level onwards many students choose to specialise in a particular field of Physics such as Condensed Matter, Nanotechnology, Environmental Physics, Medical Physics, Laser Physics, Astrophysics or Theoretical Physics. Students interested in the following areas will usually take the courses below: