Medical Physics and Biomedical Engineering


Physics and Engineering in Medicine by Distance Learning MSc

This IPEM-accredited programme is identical in content to the on-campus Radiation Physics MSc stream, but is delivered to students remotely.

To find out core information about this degree, such as entry requirements, programme length and cost, visit the UCL prospectus site.

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Please note the application deadline for this programme has been extended, and will now close on 30th July 2021. Learn more and apply.

Course information

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 science. The programme covers the applications of both ionising and non-ionising radiation to the diagnosis and treatment of human disease and disorder, and includes a research project and the development of computational skills needed to apply this theory into practice.

The programme is flexible to suit personal circumstances and is normally completed over 3-4 years, with a fifth year available as a contingency. 

Compulsory modules

Optional modules

There are no optional modules for this programme.


All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a research report of up to 10,000 words, a poster and an oral presentation.

Why study with us?

Our MSc by Distance Learning is the only distance learning medical physics course in the UK accredited by the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine (IPEM), and has won multiple UCL teaching awards. 

The MSc Research Project provides an opportunity to conduct research supervised by the department’s world-leading academics. The Research Excellence Framework in 2014 rated the department’s research as 95% 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’) and UCL was the top-rated university in the UK for research strength. 

Learn more about the scope of the department's research, and browse case studies, here.

How is it different to the campus-based programme?

The MSc by distance learning involves completing the same examinations, coursework and research project that campus-based students study on the Radiation Physics stream. The course is delivered online through lecture videos coupled with additional materials and interactive learning resources. A bespoke and flexible tutorial system provides regular feedback to distance learners to help develop skills for research and the workplace while ensuring students are prepared for examinations. 

The enhanced resources developed by the distance learning (DL) team have now started to be used by on-campus students, giving DL students the opportunity to interact with their on-campus peers.

The most significant differences between the on-campus and DL routes are structural:

  • A dedicated distance learning personal tutor available to contact at any time, by email, telephone or videocall.
  • Distance Learning Induction: All first-year DL students spend their first two weeks using all the interactive learning tools you will need to study by distance learning. The induction also includes a taster tutorial, a mathematics primer and lots of information about how you can get the most out of your studies.
  • The Distance Learning Timetable: Whereas campus-based students study each module over a single academic term (October-December or January-March), DL students spread each module’s study over the first two academic terms (October – March). This allows for greater integration of learning between modules being studied simultaneously and creates flexibility to fit in with your personal study schedule.
  • Tutorial Checkpoints: Checkpoints are organised on regular occasions throughout the year. DL students are expected to submit work in December, February and March. Feedback is given and students then meet with the distance learning tutor to discuss their work, progress on the course and identify any areas where they might want additional support.

How to apply

Application deadline: 30th July 2021
Please note that no UK visa is required for this degree, as students study remotely and there is no need for non-UK citizens to be in the country in order to attend this programme.

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 after your degree

Learn more about entry requirements on the UCL prospectus page.
If you are unsure about the relevance of your qualifications or experience please contact us at medphys.teaching@ucl.ac.uk

Learn more and Apply