Physics is the study of matter and energy, and how these two things interact. In practice, that means you’ll learn about what everything is made of (matter) and how everything moves (energy). This knowledge is fundamental to every scientific discipline. You’ll also need this know-how if you want to work in engineering, computing, construction and many other industries.
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What workplace skills does physics develop?

Critical thinking: The ability to scrutinise information you're presented with is important not only for scientists but for lawyers, police, medics, journalists and more.

Data analysis: From actuaries and financial advisors to social media specialists and market researchers, data analysis is one of the most sought after skills.

Problem solving: Complex problem solving is vital for engineers, researchers, marketers, social workers, designers, and even customer service workers. 

And one you might not have thought of...

Attention to detail: From nurses and scientists to accountants and writers, attention to detail is vital to carrying out many roles safely and effectively.

What jobs can you get with physics? 

Geophysicist: Take physics at A-level then apply for a degree in geophysics, geology, geoscience, mathematics or physics.

Operational researcher: After studying physics at A-level, take a degree in physics, maths, statistics, economics, management science or computing.

Radiographer: A-level physics then physics degree alongside a radiography training programme that’s approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).

Apply for an apprenticeship... or go to university? 


Apprenticeships for students who want to pursue a physics career include: rail engineer, nuclear power apprentice, accountant, actuary, electrical engineer, gas engineer, IT sales apprentice, energy manager, internal auditor, tax apprentice, business analyst, construction and built environment apprentice, software engineer, civil engineer.


About 21% of 2017 graduates went into IT roles, for instance scientific software engineer, software developer and IT consultant. A similar amount went into business, HR and finance, taking roles such as data analyst, risk analyst and trainee actuary. Around 8% went on to work as engineering or building professionals. Over a third went into postgraduate study, with over half of those eventually completing a PhD.

What did physics do for them?

"Skills I learned during A-level physics have been of real use. The mechanics module in physics, for example, helps me to solve real-life problems such as calculating the forces acting on a column and hence the size of the foundations required to support it."
—Georgia, design engineer apprentice at Waterman Group
"Studying maths and physics at A-level was essential for my progression to studying engineering at university,and therefore developing a career in engineering. The skills I developed, such as logical thinking, numerical manipulation, the ability to follow procedures and run lab experiments, and problem solving help me in my day-to-day role as an engineer. Some real life examples of where I have."
—Lisa, graduate trainee at Veolia
"Knowledge of environmental physics (predominantly energy, but also thermal) is key to helping me understand the assets we trade. It also helps in understanding the transmission systems, and how the commodities are stored and transported." 
—Della, shift trader at ENGIE
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Success at School Team

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