Bursaries, Scholarships and Awards

The University provides bursaries to help students during their degree programmes.  In addition to these the School of Physics and Astronomy offers a number of bursaries and scholarships to help with the finances of our students. Click on a heading below for more details. If you have any queries that are not addressed here, please contact the admissions office.

Scholarships Based on Academic Achievement (UK/EU students)

To help physics students financially upon entry to the University of Birmingham, the School of Physics and Astronomy provide substantial scholarships based on A Level (or equivalent) grades for those who place Birmingham as their firm choice of University. 

 The available Scholarships are: 

  • £500 for A*A*A (with A* in Mathematics and Physics and A in the third subject of your offer).
  • Each additional A* to the A*A* in Mathematics and Physics will be rewarded an extra £500.

Please note that no formal application is required, as eligibility is determined by the University; the scholarships are not means tested. If you are eligible you will be contacted at the beginning of your first term. The scholarship is usually received by the end of the Autumn term. These scholarships are a one off payment and are not renewable or transferable.


University scholarships

Please see the University's funding database for details of other centrally-administered scholarships.

Poynting Scholarship for International Students (International students)

We offer a scholarship named after the first Birmingham Professor of Physics, Professor Poynting, to the value of £1000 per a year if the following conditions are met

  • School of Physics and Astronomy international student (classifed international for fees)
  • Achieve equivalent to A Level  A*A*A* including Mathematics and Physics
  • Put University of Birmingham as firm UCAS choice
  • During studies at Birmingham attain full credits and an overall year mark of 70% or higher in the first attempt in order to renew each year.

University scholarships

You may also be interested in the University's funding database for details of other centrally-administered scholarships.

BP Scholarships (UK/EU and International students)

Launched in 2012, the BP Scholarships are intended to encourage and support students with a passion for certain subjects. 

Each year BP will offer scholarships to up to 10 students from the University of Birmingham. Each scholarship is worth up to £12 000 with scholars receiving £3 000 per year for the duration of their degree (up to four years). The scholarship is not intended to cover fees but offer students support with the costs of resources and living. Learn more about the BP scholarships.

Music/Performing Arts Scholarships (UK/EU and International students)

The School of Physics and astronomy offers a number of scholarships for students who have reached grade 8 (or equivalent) in music or performing arts and placed Birmingham as their firm UCAS choice, so that they may continue their studies throughout their degree programmes. Students will be contacted in the August prior to starting their course to provide evidence of their music qualifications.

All students who are at the required level, placed us as firm UCAS choice and apply by the deadline (welcome week of first year) automatically receive this scholarship, which at present is in the form of 10 lessons, worth approximately £600 per year, with a tutor from either the Birmingham Conservatoire or the University of Birmingham School of Music. Additionally you will receive access to the School of Music's practice rooms. The scholarship is awarded for the duration of undergraduate study, subject to the recipient maintaining predetermined academic and musical standards.  Students receiving university level music scholarship, details below, are ineligible for the Physics based award. 

Please contact the Admissions Tutor for more details. 

Birmingham's musical heritage reaches back to our first Professor of Music, Edward Elgar.  Today, both the Bramall Music Building and the Barber Institute host regular public performances from our orchestras, choirs, bands and other music ensembles.  In recognition of this legacy, the University of Birmingham will be offering Music Scholarships to new undergraduates.  Learn more about our music scholarships here.

Physics Sports Bursaries (UK/EU and International students)

The Physics Sports Bursary is awarded to  a limited number of top sports people who have applied to study an undergraduate degree programme within this school and placed Birmingham as their firm UCAS choice. Students will be contacted in the August prior to starting their course to provide evidence of their sporting achievements, and to be considered they must apply by the deadline (welcome week of first year). 

It is funded up to £800 per annum, and is awarded for the duration of undergraduate study, subject to the recipient maintaining predetermined academic and sporting standards. This funding can be put towards any sports or training related costs (e.g. gym membership, tournament expenses, coaching, or equipment).  Students receiving University level sports scholarships, details below, are ineligible for the Physics based award. 

University of Birmingham Sport (UBS) has a comprehensive programme of scholarships and bursaries offered to talented sports people studying at the University. It is possible to apply for both the UBS Sports Scholarships and the Physics Sports Bursary, but if you are successful in receiving a UBS or TASS scholarship you will not be eligible to receive the Physics scholarship in addition. 

Lloyds Scholars programme (UK/EU students currently residing in the UK)

The University of Birmingham is proud to announce its continuing involvement in the award-winning Lloyds Scholars programme.

Along with other leading universities across the UK, the University of Birmingham will partner with the Lloyds Banking Group to offer students from lower household incomes a complete package of financial support, paid internships and the opportunity to develop their employability skills.

Further information

Chamberlain Award (UK students)

If your household income is below £36,000, you may be entitled to additional financial support from the University in the form of a Chamberlain Award

Additional awards during your studies (UK/EU and International students)

In addition to the above we provide a number of awards to our students throughout the degree programme reflecting achievement:

  • MSci Smith Prize for top student (£350)
  • MSci Moreton Prize for second student(£280)
  • BSc Smith Prize for top student (£350)
  • BSci Moreton Prize for second student(£280)
  • Nolan Merrill Prize for best Y4 project (£250) (endowed by Cavendish Nuclear)
  • Tessella Prize for most innovative use of software in a Y4 project (£250) (endowed by Tessella plc)
  • Martin Johnson Prize for best Y2 essay on an Astrophysical Topic Best Astro/Space Research Essay Prize
  • Best non-Astro Student Essay Prize
  • The George Isaak Prize: for the best performance in a year 2 project, taking into account all aspects of project work. The prize will normally be awarded to one student.
  • The Richard Knight Prize: for the best performance in Year 1 laboratory, taking into account all aspects of experimental and project work. The prize will normally be awarded to one student
  • A number of School Prizes are also awarded each year to students demonstrating Excellence. In addition, the school (in collaboration with the School of Mathematics) may award an additional Smith or Moreton prize to a TPAM student when the marks of the top or second joint honours student are higher than those of the relevant single honours students.
  • The state Bursar's prize: awarded for the best essay on the topic of Physics and European Culture and is open to all undergraduates in the school. All students will be emailed with details of this.
  • The Physics European Bursary is offered to any student spending an academic year in an EU University under the Erasmus/Socrates programme.