Physics and Engineering in Medicine: Radiation Physics MSc

Options: PG Diploma

This programme stream is designed for students with a developed interest in the radiation physics aspects of technology that is applied in modern medicine. Students gain an understanding of scientific principles and practices that are used in hospitals, industries and research laboratories through lectures, problem solving sessions, a research project and collaborative work.

Mode of study

  • Full-time 1 year
  • Part-time 2 years

Tuition fees

  • UK/EU Full-time: £10,450
  • UK/EU Part-time: £5,400
  • Overseas Full-time: £21,700
  • Overseas Part-time: £10,800

Application date

  • All applicants: 1 August 2014

More details in Application section.

What will I learn?

Students study in detail the physics theory and practice that underpins modern medicine, and learn to apply their knowledge to established and emerging technologies in medical imaging and therapy. The programme covers the applications of both ionising and non-ionising radiation to the diagnosis and treatment of human disease and disorder, as well as the electronic and computational skills needed to apply this theory into practice.

Why should I study this degree at UCL?

The spectrum of medical physics activities undertaken in UCL Medical Physics and Bioengineering is probably the broadest of any in the United Kingdom. The department is widely acknowledged as an internationally leading centre of excellence and students on this programme receive comprehensive training in the latest methodologies and technologies from leaders in the field.

The department operates alongside the NHS department which provides the medical physics and clinical engineering services for the UCL Hospitals Trust, as well as undertaking industrial contract research and technology transfer.

Students have access to an exceptionally wide range of workshop, laboratory, teaching and clinical facilities in the department and associated hospitals. A large range of scientific equipment is available for research involving nuclear magnetic resonance, optics, acoustics, X-rays, radiation dosimetry, and implant development.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. The programme consists of six core modules (90 credits), two optional modules (30 credits), and a research project (60 credits).

A Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits) is offered.

Core Modules

  • Interactions of Radiation with Matter
  • Imaging with Ionising Radiation
  • Imaging with Non-ionising Radiation
  • Clinical Practice
  • Treatment with Ionising Radiation
  • Viva module


  • Aspects of Biomedical Engineering
  • Optics in Medicine
  • Computing in Medicine
  • Medical Devices and Applications


All MSc students undertake an independent research project within the broad area of Physics and Engineering in Medicine which culminates in a report up to 10,000 words, a poster and an oral examination.

Teaching and Learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, demonstrations, practicals, hospital visits, and a research project. Lecturers are drawn from UCL and from London teaching hospitals including UCLH, St. Bartholomew's, and the Royal Free Hospital. Assessment is through supervised examination, coursework, the dissertation and an oral examination.

Further details available on subject website:

Scholarships available for this department

Brown Family Bursary

This award is based on financial need.

Further information about funding and scholarships can be found on the Scholarships and funding website.

Entry requirements

A minimum of a second-class Bachelor's degree in Physics, Engineering, Computer Science, Mathematics, or another closely related discipline, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Workplace knowledge and expertise are also considered.

International equivalencies

Select your country for equivalent alternative requirements

English language proficiency level:

How to apply

Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

The deadline for applications is 1 August 2014.

Who can apply?

The programme is particularly suitable for students with a first degree in a physical or mathematical science who wish to develop an interdisciplinary approach to problem-solving in healthcare, and in particular those seeking employment as clinical or biomedical engineers in hospital, industry or university environments.

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:

  • why you want to study radiation physics at graduate level
  • why you want to study this programme at UCL
  • whether you have relevant industrial or workplace experience
  • how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.


The MSc programme has been accredited for many years by the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM) and the department is working towards ensuring compliance with the new IPEM accreditation standards being published later in 2013.

Top career destinations for this programme

  • Pfizer Ltd, Radiation Physicist, 2011
  • University of Oxford, Cardiac and Vascular MRI Physicist, 2011
  • Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Trust, Clinical Scientist (training), 2011
  • Bristol Haematology & Oncology Centre, Radiotherapy Physicist, 2010
  • Royal Marsden NHS Trust, PhD Student, 2009


Postgraduate study within the department offers the chance to develop important skills and acquire new knowledge through involvement with a team of scientists or engineers working in a world-leading research group. Graduates complete their study having gained new scientific or engineering skills applied to solving problems at the leading edge of human endeavour. Skills associated with project management, effective communication and teamwork are also refined in this high-quality working environment.

Next steps


Dr Martin Fry

T: +44 (0)20 7679 0253


Medical Physics & Bioengineering

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Staff View

"UCL in itself, with its amazingly diversified biomedical research, is an endless source of ideal collaborators, most of which are world leading. There are by far more interesting projects than there is time to be able to carry them out."

Dr Alessandro Olivo

Professor of Applied Physics

Student View

"The access to industry I have gained at UCL has been particularly valuable: I managed to secure funding from the UCL Graduate School to spend one month in a proton therapy centre in the USA. This was vital as part of my work as we currently do not have such facilities or expertise in the UK."

Paul Doolan

Degree: Medical Physics PhD