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EducationBachelor's degree programmesApplied Physics
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Applied Physics

Physics is concerned with describing and predicting natural phenomena. Applied physics is concerned with applying physics in technical solutions. Design and construction are important aspects of this.

Applied physics is at the heart of society. It forms the basis for many of the products we use in daily life. The programme has a strong interdisciplinary orientation, with an emphasis on combinations of subjects: physics with design studies, nanotechnology, new materials and systems and control engineering

Applied physics involves studying not only how phenomena come about, but also how to use them for technical solutions. The programme focuses on theory and practice.

Critical appraisal skills

Applied physics is an academic subject, which means that you acquire not only knowledge, but also skills such as presentation, working in a team and setting up and conducting research. We teach you critical appraisal skills, which you will learn to apply to your own and other's work.

Tough subject

Applied physics can certainly be described as a 'tough' subject. In order to study it you need to have an affinity for sciences and you need to have an enquiring and creative mind that wonders how things work.


Facts & Figures
Degree
BSc in Applied Physics
Course type
Bachelor
Duration
36 months (180 ECTS)
Croho code
56962
Language of instruction
English
Start
September
Faculty
Science and Engineering
Studie in Cijfers
Why study this programme in Groningen?
  • In Groningen you can study Physics alongside Applied Physics, and you don't have to choose between them right away. Groningen is the only university in the Netherlands to offer a broad Bachelor's programme that allows you to explore various natural sciences.
  • In Groningen you will be taught by researchers who have gained a worldwide reputation. The linked Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials is ranked in the top 15 of its kind worldwide.
Programme
CoursesCourse Catalog >
Calculus 1, 2 & 3
Electives semester 1: introduction Astronomy; introduction Energy and Environment 1; Medical Physics; Physics of Modern Technology; Physics of Quantum Universe
Electricity and Magnetism
Heat & Transport
Linear Algebra
Mathematical Physics
Python for Physicists
Various Practicals

Curriculum

The Groningen science and engineering programmes stand out for their academic excellence. The work pace in the first year is generally high and the courses contents demanding. The first year curriculum concentrates on laying a sound basis for our engineering and natural science disciplines. This allows our students to choose their specialization tracks already in their second Bachelor's year.

Credits per year: 60 ECTS; most courses are 5 ECTS.

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional
  • Maximum of 30 EC

Exchange: All our science and engineering programmes offer study abroad possibilities at a number of partner institutions. Our partners include top-100 universities in Europe (for example in Germany, UK, and Sweden) and in the USA, China, South-East Asia, and South America. Our exchange programmes have a typical duration of one semester and count toward your final degree.

Internship: This programme offers you the opportunity to carry out a research project of a variable number of months at a company in the Netherlands or abroad, as part of your thesis. Our choice of industry partners ranges from large multinationals (such as Shell, Philips, Unilever) to dynamic small and medium enterprises in the Groningen area.

Entry requirements

Admissible Dutch diploma profiles

  • Cultuur & Maatschappij

    wiskunde B + natuurkunde

  • Economie & Maatschappij

    wiskunde B + natuurkunde

  • Natuur & Gezondheid

    wiskunde B + natuurkunde

  • Natuur & Techniek

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
language test

Een voldoende op je vwo-Engels is aan te bevelen omdat de opleiding Natuurkunde Engelstalig is.

other admission requirements

BEFORE YOU APPLY!

Make sure to visit 'BSc Application Procedure' at: http://www.rug.nl/fwn/fmns-programme/admissions/bsc/ for all the necessary information about the procedure and admission requirements.

If you apply, you participate in the mandatory matching process of the Faculty of Science and Engineering. More information: https://www.rug.nl/fse/education/matching

Choice of degree programme check

The degree programme will organize a matching procedure. Attendance is compulsory. The advice is not binding.

Explanatory notes

More information about matching: https://www.rug.nl/fse/education/matching

Choice of degree programme check

More information about matching: https://www.rug.nl/fse/education/matching

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
additional subject

Mathematics and Physics.

This is merely an indication of required background knowledge. The admissions board determines whether the specific contents of this/these course(s) meet the admission requirements of the bachelor programme for which you applied.

language test

Proficiency in English is an admission requirement for all English-taught degree programmes. Please find our English language requirements (IELTS, TOEFL, Cambridge and more) on this page: https://www.rug.nl/fse/programme/admissions/bsc/language

previous education

Secondary education equivalent to Dutch pre-university education is required.

This is merely an indication of the required general level of applicants' previous education.

FOR MORE INFORMATION please visit the 'BSc Application Procedure' pages at: http://www.rug.nl/education/international-students/application-procedure/entry-requirements/bachelor-degree-programme

Language requirements

ExamMinimum score
IELTS overall band6.5
TOEFL internet based90

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students01 May 202001 September 2020
EU/EEA students01 May 202001 September 2020
non-EU/EEA students01 May 202001 September 2020
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2019-2020€ 2083full-time
non-EU/EEA2019-2020€ 12500full-time
EU/EEA2020-2021€ 2143full-time
non-EU/EEA2020-2021€ 14000full-time

The Dutch government intends to halve the statutory tuition fees for specific groups of first year bachelor's students starting from the 2018/19 academic year.

https://www.rug.nl/education/tuition-fees-halved

Practical information for:

After your studies

Job prospects

Applied Physics is a broad Bachelor's programme, after which you can specialize with a Master's degree programme. You can then continue in the academic world or opt for a career in the business world. Many applied physics graduates find work developing new products.

Business

Many applied physics graduates choose a job in industry, contributing to technical innovations and product development. In the SME sector, consultancy and engineering firms are also increasingly looking for applied physicists.

Research and advising

When you have your Master's degree you can carry out PhD research at a university. You could also work for a research institute such as TNO (Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research) or the NLR (National Aerospace Laboratory of the Netherlands). Other openings include managerial and policy positions in a range of fields, for example in environmental protection or the service sector.

Not quite the same as technology

Applied physicists, like 'ordinary' physicists, are sought after by large organizations such as banks and insurance companies, which value their analytical skills. Management consultancy firms frequently recruit applied physicists too.

Job examples

  • Analist
  • Consultant
  • Researcher
  • Technical innovator
Research

Our Bachelor's degree programme in applied physics is connected to the following research institutes of the University of Groningen.

Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials

Basic research on materials is directed towards unravelling the relations between the properties that determine their functionality and their chemical composition and structure. The quest for in-depth understanding of these constitutive relations often leads to unexpected boundaries signifying fundamental gaps in our knowledge. Although the structure-property relationship is in itself a truism, the actual linkage between (micro) structural aspects in a material and its physical/chemical properties is elusive. The reason is that various properties are determined by the collective behaviour of molecules, atoms and electrons and their behaviour may be extremely non-linear on different time and length scales. 

The classic materials triangle concerns an integrative approach in the three aspects of structure, property and chemical composition. The Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials adds an extra dimension to this traditional view by an unconventional linkage to the field of biomolecular sciences, which includes the design aspects as well. 

Van Swinderen Institute

The aim of the Van Swinderen Institute for Particle Physics and Gravity is to study the fundamental forces of Nature with implications for our Universe. These investigations connect through close similarities in physics from Planck-scale physics (quantum gravity) via sub-atomic scales (particle physics) to cosmic dimensions. There are both theoretical as well as experimental efforts in more specialized topics such as the test of fundamental symmetries and forces,  LHC and Beyond the Standard Model physics, holography, string theory and inflation. 

emission reduction, development and evaluation of (inter)national climate policies, societal and ethical context of scientific/technical transitions towards sustainability.

ESRIG - Energy and Sustainability Research Institute Groningen 

Although ESRIG is a Research Institute, bundling strengths leads to new educational possibilities as well in the Master phase the Energy and Environmental Sciences (EES) programme has been operational for several years, under responsibility of IVEM and CIO. At present, this programme offers two tracks: The IVEM track ("Energy and Environmental Sciences"), and the CIO-track ("Experimental studies of greenhouse gases and climate history"). The IVEM track will be extended by elements of SSG research. The CIO-track will be enforced and broadened by the other experimental groups inside ESRIG. 

In the Bachelor phase the curriculum of Physics and Chemistry will start with an "energy and environmental" track form the year 2010-2011 onwards. As ESRIG is the central institute for this subject, ESRIG scientists take the lead in both the track design and the actual teaching. 

Kapteyn Astronomical Institute

The Kapteyn Astronomical Institute is the department of Astronomy at the University of Groningen. The Kapteyn Astronomical Institute uses the most advanced instrumentation on the ground and in space, as well as the most advanced computing facilities. Kapteyn staff are involved in the operation as well as planning and construction of major astronomical instrumentation efforts, again on the ground and in space. Master students at the Kapteyn Astronomical Institute work in research groups which are currently shaping 21st-century astronomy and astrophysics. The Kapteyn Institute has close connections with the two major national foundations dealing with astronomical instrumentation: ASTRON and SRON.

Centre for Advanced Radiation Technology (CART)

The mission of the Center for Advanced Radiation Technology (CART) is to perform basic research on subatomic and astroparticle physics and application-driven research on accelerator physics and physics in medicine. We work, in close collaboration with the scientific community, healthcare and industry, on long-term solutions for science and society. Through the development of state-of-the-art detection techniques, CART fosters the cross-fertilization between basic and application-driven research. CART educates young researchers in physics and medical technology at BSc, MSc and PhD level.

 

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Contact

If you want to know more about the programme Applied Physics, please contact:

  • Academic Advisor (For questions regarding the programme)
  • sciencebachelors@rug.nl (For international students who are interested in a Campus Tour or have other practical questions)
    Email: sciencebachelors rug.nl
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  • 
						Testimonial of

    The programme is very challenging: I still have a long way to go, but I already know I made the right choice.

    Read more

    Before I applied to the University of Groningen, I knew nothing about Groningen. All I knew was that I wanted to study abroad to improve my English and it was the only top-rated university besides Great Britain that offered the undergraduate programme I wanted in English. I have always been very interested in physics: it's a fascinating field. Of course, you learn about natural phenomena, but combining it with modern technologies really makes it worthwhile.

    That's why I decided to take up Applied Physics. The programme is very challenging: I still have a long way to go, but I already know I made the right choice.

    The lecturers here are very open, and always take the time to answer questions. They all speak English and although the material is tough, I feel like I'm learning a lot. This subject is so broad and varied. Fortunately, the university also helped me with the application process, making it much more straightforward. They even put me in touch with a mentor student from my faculty in case I needed any help or advice.

    Getting started wasn't easy. I left my home, my country Portugal, and my family to live on my own. I had to do things by myself that I used to do with my friends and family. Fortunately, Groningen is a very safe, comfortable city full of life and I quickly found my way around - although I still don't like cycling in the rain. It is an easy-going, relaxed place to live, with plenty of excitement and activities when you want to have some time off. National holidays like Sinterklaas and King's Day are good fun, and Dutch students are always up for introducing you to these traditions.

    Groningen has a great variety of clubs and organisations you can join to meet people – there really is something for everyone. I felt at home with the other Spanish exchange students and discovered how many young people with different nationalities were in that same situation I was in. This really helped me improve my English, and also offered me a new, in-depth perspective on the world around me.

    Studying abroad is not easy. It has its ups and downs, and there will be moments when you miss everything you were used to at home. But that is also the point of an experience like this. It makes you stronger and wiser when you overcome all the difficulties and problems that might not have happened to you in your 'natural habitat'. It is, without doubt, one of the best ways to grow as a human being.

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Study associations

Professor Francken

T.F.V. 'Professor Francken' is the study association for students of Applied Physics at the University of Groningen.
The association is named after Groningen's first ever professor of applied physics, and focuses on students and staff from the applied physics departments. The association has more than 700 members and organizes annual events including a symposium, excursions in the Netherlands and a foreign trip, as well as more informal activities, such as regular drinks parties.
https://www.professorfrancken.nl/
Read more
(Binding) study advice
  • A minimum of 45 EC in the first 12 months (binding)

You will be issued a study advice at the end of your first year of study. You can expect a positive study advice if you have earned at least 45 ECTS credit points (out of a total of 60 ECTS; most course units are 5 ECTS). If you have earned fewer than 45 ECTS and are issued a negative study advice, you will not be allowed to continue your degree programme.

You will receive a preliminary study advice in December to make sure that you know where you are. Please contact your study advisor as soon as possible if you have any questions about the BSA system.

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