Postgraduate research

Research in physics and astronomy

Our research portfolio is wide-ranging, and covers three principal themes: Particle and Nuclear Physics; Quantum Matter and Nanoscale Science; and Astronomy.

For further, detailed information on graduate research opportunities please visit our research group pages, which may be accessed via our Physics and Astronomy Research website.

Links to summary information on opportunities in the various research areas may be found below

Postgraduate research programmes

Research within the School is based on a group structure and the heads of groups meet regularly with the Head of School to discuss research policy.

All research groups hold regular seminars with many distinguished external speakers. Almost all the research activity involves national or international collaboration, including industrial partners, and the School often hosts conferences or meetings on various research topics, bringing in leading scientists from around the world.

Training of PhD students is organised by the groups, within the framework of the Graduate Research School.

Recruitment of PhD students is carried out by individual research groups, each of which has a contact person. If you are interested in more than one activity, you should indicate this on your application form. 

Details of postgraduate study at Birmingham can be found in our postgraduate information booklet (120KB PDF).

Please note that from 2012/13, the University of Birmingham will no longer offer the award of one year MPhil(A) or MPhil(B).  Instead these will be replaced by the award of MA/MSc by Research or MRes.  For further details, please contact the relevant admissions tutor.

Online applications are available at

The Director of Graduate Studies for PhD students is Professor Y P Elsworth.

Research-based postgraduate degrees: Astronomy

Research-based postgraduate courses: Particle and Nuclear Physics

Research-based postgraduate courses: Quantum Matter and Nanoscale Science