Available in 2021
Course code



20 units


4000 level

Course handbook


The Honours Program in Physics is designed to give students an advanced understanding of specific topics in modern physics through coursework and a research project. PHYS4110 and PHYS4210 comprise coursework related to current research interests in Physics - Surface Physics, Near-Earth Space Physics, Solid State Physics and Medical Physics. PHYS4110 and PHYS4210 together comprise 90 hours of lectures which must include three compulsory core topics from Quantum Mechanics, Solid State Physics, Electromagnetism and Classical & Modern Optics, and three elective topics. As a part of PHYS4110 and PHYS4210, students will complete work on research methodology.

Availability2021 Course Timetables


  • Semester 1 - 2021
  • Semester 2 - 2021

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. An understanding at an advanced level of the principles and techniques underlying many of the important areas of contemporary physics

2. Competence in researching the scientific literature

3. A significantly enhanced understanding of how to apply their knowledge of physics to real physical systems independently and collaboratively

4. The capacity to devise and employ effective and creative strategies in problem solving, in conducting research, and in analysing and modelling the behaviour of physical systems.

5. Mastery of a range of experimental, theoretical and/or computational techniques

6. An enhanced ability to effectively communicate their knowledge of physics to a wide variety of audiences

7. Awareness of appropriate professional conduct and practice


PHYS4210 is a 20 unit course in the BSc(Phys)(Honours) program which incorporates coursework covered by a selection of the topics listed below:

Core Topics (3 topics from):

  • Quantum Mechanics
  • Solid State Physics
  • Electromagnetism
  • Classical and Modern Optics

Elective Topics (3 topics from)*:

  • Advanced Optical Fibres
  • Application of Numerical Techniques in Physics
  • Digital Signal Processing
  • Magnetohydrodynamics & Astrophysics
  • Medical Physics
  • Organic Electronics
  • Space/Ionospheric Physics
  • Surface Physics

Research Methodology

  1. Occupational Health and Safety requirements associated with research projects
  2. Project management skills
  3. Experimental design and data analysis
  4. Thesis writing skills
  5. Seminar presentation skills
  6. Professional conduct and practice

* This list of optional topics may vary from year to year. The fourth core topic can also be taken as an elective topic.

Students may replace one physics elective topic with an appropriate mathematics, or chemistry topic subject to approval by the Physics Honours Coordinator.


This course is only available to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Science (Honours) program.

Assumed knowledge

A major in Physics with a Credit grade average in at least 40 units of 3000 level physics courses.

Assessment items

Essay: Essays / Written Assignments

In Term Test: Examination: Class

Participation: Group/tutorial participation and contribution

Quiz: Quiz - Class

Quiz: Quiz - On-line

Presentation: Seminar

Compulsory Requirements

In order to pass this course, each student must complete ALL of the following compulsory requirements:

General Course Requirements:

  • Integrated Learning Session: Induction Requirement - Students must attend and pass the induction requirements before attending these sessions. - In order to participate in this course students must complete a compulsory safety induction.

Contact hours


Integrated Learning Session

Face to Face On Campus 50 hour(s) per Term Full Term

Each content topic runs for 15 hours per semester. Actual contact hours will depend on the number of topics chosen per semester. The research methodology topic will be run by flexible delivery equivalent to 10 hours of contact per semester.