Faculty of Science - Leading creativity and innovation in the sciences

Undergraduate major in Physics

Subject description


Physics is perhaps the most fundamental of all sciences. Understanding the principles of physics and the laws of nature gives you an enhanced insight into the world around you. All of modern science and technology is underpinned by physics. A degree in physics will give you an understanding of the nature of matter combined with training in experimental methods and the mathematical analysis of physical processes.

Postgraduate Physics

Lectures at postgraduate level include a choice of basic and specialised topics. The latter are closely related to the research interests (and therefore MSc thesis topics) in the Department, which include aspects of theoretical physics, nuclear physics, laser physics, optoelectronics, nonlinear fibre optics, teraherta spectroscopy, adaptive optics, quantum optics, atom optics, optical metrology, biophotonics, theoretical biology, condensed matter physics, marine acoustics, atmospheric and ionspheric physics, astrophysics, elementary particle physics, remote sensing, signal processing and physics education.



Bachelor of Science (BSc) - Physics major

Single or first major must include:

Second major must include:

Stage I courses

You should select your Stage I Physics courses according to your background preparation in Physics and the major subject or professional degree that you intend to pursue.

Students who intend to major in the physical or mathematical sciences should take both PHYSICS 120 and PHYSICS 121.

Enrolment in MATHS 108, 110, or 150 in Semester One and Maths 250 or 208 in Semester Two is recommended to ensure adequate mathematical preparation for Stage II Physics courses.

The other first-year courses will be of interest to students with diverse backgrounds and interests.

Plan your degree with our Physics planner


Career opportunities

Fundamental physics is a strong underpinning for careers in many branches of the physical sciences. Recent graduates are finding work in research-based jobs, and teaching, marketing, medical physics and computing. Mineral exploration physics and astrophysics are open to physics graduates.

Many aspects of computing and telecommunications require physics and a degree in physics would open up avenues in scientific instrument manufacture, electronics and development of computer systems.

Industrial applications of physics including noise control, industrial process monitoring and control, radiation monitoring, vibration analysis and water resource management.

Meteorology and oceanography are also interesting fields available to physicists.


Help and advice

For further information refer to the Physics Undergraduate Handbook or contact the Stage I/Undergraduate Adviser for Physics.

Mark Conway
First Year Physics Lab
Building 303, 38 Princes Street
Phone: +64 9 923 8864

Alternatively, staff at the Department of Physics, located on Level 6 of Building 303 (38 Princes Street), can help you with general enquiries and refer you on to the relevant academic advisors.

Phone: +64 9 373 7599 ext 88747
Email: ugadvice-physics@auckland.ac.nz
Web: www.physics.auckland.ac.nz


Further information