Mathematical Physics (BSc and MPhys)

Coronavirus (Covid-19) updates

If you are a prospective student please see our Covid-19 webpages, which we are updating regularly, for detailed advice and support.

UCAS codes

F326 (BSc)
F325 (MPhys)

Degree overview

Mathematical Physics aims to develop a precise quantitative understanding of the nature, structure and evolution of the physical world through the language of mathematics. Its scope runs from quarks and leptons, the smallest fragments of the universe, through the material world we perceive directly with our senses, and on to stars and galaxies, and the origins and fate of the universe itself. It thus builds directly on the work of Newton, Maxwell, Einstein, Heisenberg, Dirac, Feynman, Hawking, Higgs and countless others. Our aim is to equip you with the precise analytical thinking necessary to understand this vast subject in depth, and perhaps even some day to contribute to it yourself.

The emphasis on problem solving and thorough grounding in classical, quantum and statistical physics prepares you for a wide range of careers, including research in the physical sciences, engineering, computing and finance.

Key information & entry requirements

Degree structure & content

Degree Programme Tables are published by the University and provide full details of the structure and content of each degree programme.

More about Mathematical Physics at Edinburgh

The identification of Mathematical Physics as a discipline distinct from physics and mathematics began in Edinburgh in 1922 when the Tait Chair of Natural Philosophy was established.  The Chair was named after Peter Guthrie Tait, a close colleague of James Clerk Maxwell, and the intention was that it should be devoted to the teaching of mathematical physics.

In 1955 the title of the chair changed to the Tait Chair of Mathematical Physics.

Previous Tait Professors include Max Born, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for his probabilistic interpretation of quantum mechanics, and David Wallace who founded EPCC in 1990.

Every year we award the Tait Medal for the best final year student in Mathematical Physics or the School of Mathematics degree, Mathematics & Physics.