Undergraduates

Course Information

Physics and Applied Physics Courses


Year 1 — Year 3 Courses

Course Contents
PH1104
Mechanics


3 AU | Semester 1
Basic concepts and problem solving skills in mechanics.

Prerequisite: Physics and Maths at A or H2 level, or equivalents.
Not available to students who have taken or are taking PH1011, PH1012, PH1801, or CY1308.
PH1105
Optics, Vibrations and Waves


3 AU | Semester 1
Basic concepts and problem solving skills in optics and wave phenomena.

​Prerequisite: Physics and Maths at A or H2 level, or equivalents.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking EE1002.
PH1106
Electricity and Magnetism


3 AU | Semester 2​
Key ideas of fields and oscillations, in the context of electrostatics, magnetism, simple harmonic motion and electric circuits.

Prerequisite: Physics and Maths at A or H2 level, or equivalents.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking PH1011, PH1012, PH1802, EE1002, PHYS1B, CY1302, or CY1306.
PH1107
Relativity and Quantum Physics​


3 AU | Semester 2
Basic concepts and problem solving skills for analysing objects moving close to the speed of light and particles exhibiting quantum behaviour.

Prerequisite: Physics and Maths at A or H2 level, or equivalents.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking CY1307.
PH1198
Physics Laboratory Ia


2 AU | Semester 1
Basic laboratory course in experimental physics, with experiments in mechanics, basic optics and thermal physics. The laboratory sessions provide an active learning experience for appreciting key physics concepts. Students also learn about data acquisition, error analysis, error distribution, and data analysis.

Prerequisite: Physics at A or H2 level or equivalent.
PH1199
Physics Laboratory Ib


2 AU | Semester 2
Basic laboratory course in experimental physics, with experiments in electricity and magnetism, circuits, optics and wave phenomena. The laboratory sessions provide an active learning experience for appreciting key physics concepts. Students also learn about data acquisition, error analysis, error distribution, and data analysis.

Prerequisite: Physics at A or H2 level or equivalent.
PH2101
Quantum Mechanics I


3 AU | Semester 2
Introduction to quantum mechanics. The formalism of quantum mechanics is developed in terms of matrices and wave functions, along with details about foundational quantum experiments and real-life applications.

Prerequisites: (MH1801 and PH1107) OR (MH1801 and CY1307) OR (MH1802 and MH1803 and PH1107) OR (CY1307 and CY1601 and CY1602) OR (MH1101​ and MH1200 and PH1107)​.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking CY1303.
PH2102
Electromagnetism​​


4 AU | Semester 2
Fundamental principles of electromagnetism. Students also learn analytical, computational and mathematical skills involved in solving partial differential equations, and how to interpret the physical concepts behind the equations and their solutions.

Prerequisites: (MH1801 and MH2800 and PH1106) OR (MH1802 and MH1803 and MH2802 and PH1106) OR (CY1601 and CY1602 and CY1308) OR (MH1101​ and MH1200 and PH1106)​.
PH2103
Thermal Physics


4 AU | Semester 1
Basic concepts in thermal physics, including the nature of temperature and heat.

Prerequisites: (MH2800 and PH1104) OR (MH1803 and MH2802 and PH1104) OR (CY1601 and CY1602 and CY1308) OR (MH1101​and MH1200)​.
PH2104
Analytical Mechanics


4 AU | Semester 1
Basic concepts and problem solving skills for analytical mechanics. The physical intuition and analytical skills covered in this course are essential for advanced topics such as quantum mechanics and photonics.

Prerequisites: (MH2800 and PH1104) OR (MH1803 and MH2802 and PH1104) OR (CY1601 and CY1602 and CY1308)
Not available to students who have taken/are taking MA1001.
PH2198
Physics Laboratory IIa


2 AU | Semester 1
Intermediate laboratory course in experimental physics, with experiments involving electronic signal processing, interferometry, spectroscopy, and more.

Prerequisite: PH1198 or CY1400.
PH2199
Physics Laboratory IIb


2 AU | Semester 2
Intermediate laboratory course in experimental physics, with experiments involving computer-aided data acquisition, spectroscopy, thermal physics, and more.

Prerequisite: PH1199 or CY1400.
PH2301
Physical Optics


3 AU | Semester 2
Concepts in physical optics and electromagnetic wave phenomena, including the phenomena of polarisation, interference and diffraction.

Prerequisite: PH1105
PH2601
Introduction to Lasers


3 AU | Semester 2
Introduction to lasers and their working principles, including stimulated emission of radiation, atomic transitions, rate equations, coherent optical oscillations, laser resonators, and design principles for laser devices.

Prerequisite: PH1105.
PH3101
Quantum Mechanics II


4 AU | Semester 1
Intermediate course in quantum mechanics, featuring the logical and systematic development of quantum mechanical formalism. Topics include quantum kinematics, finite- and infinite-dimensional systems, quantum measurements, symmetries in quantum mechanics, angular momentum, hydrogenic atoms, and perturbation theory.


Prerequisites: PH2101 and MH2801.
PH3102
Condensed Matter Physics I


4 AU | Semester 1
The structure of solids, and the quantum mechanical motion of atoms and electrons in periodic solids. Topics include crystal symmetry, sound propagation in solids, electronic properties, and the distinctions between metals, semiconductors and insulators.

Prerequisites: PH1105, PH2101, and PH2103.
PH3199
Physics Laboratory IIIa


2 AU | Semester 1 & 2
Advanced training in experimental physics, covering a wide variety of topics including quantum physics, electrodynamics, atomic physics and spectroscopy, solid state physics, fluid mechanics, semiconductor physics, photonics, biophysics and thin film growth.

Prerequisites: PH2198 and PH2199.
PH3201
Statistical Mechanics


4 AU | Semester 2
Postulates and key ideas in statistical mechanics, with applications to classical and quantum gases. Topics include the postulates of statistical mechanics, temperature and entropy, density of states and heat capacity in black body radiation, ideal classical gases, free electron gases, phonons, and phase transitions.

Prerequisite: PH3101.
PH3399
Physics Laboratory IIIb


2 AU | Semester 1 & 2
Advanced training in experimental physics covering a wide variety of topics including quantum physics, electrodynamics, atomic physics and spectroscopy, solid state physics, fluid mechanics, semiconductor physics, photonics, biophysics and thin film growth.

Prerequisite: PH2198 and PH2199.
PH3401
Atomic Physics​


4 AU | Semester 2
Introduction to atomic physics and the quantum mechanical properties of atoms. The fundamental concepts taught here are applicable to condensed matter physics, nuclear physics, and molecular physics.


Prerequisite: PH3101.
PH3403
Cosmology


3 AU | Semester 1
Introduction to cosmology, covering topics such as inflation theory, structure formation, the cosmic microwave background, gravitational waves, the geometry of the universe, and open problems in cosmology such as dark matter, dark energy and primordial gravitational waves.​

​Prerequisites: PH1107, PH2101, and PH2103.
PH3404
Physics of Classical and Quantum Information


3 AU | Semester 1
Interdisciplinary course covering a rapidly growing cross-disciplinary research frontier between physics, information science and computation. Students will be introduced to the fundamentals of classical and quantum information science, including topics in information physics, quantum information, and quantum computation.

Prerequisites: (PH2101 and MH1402) OR (PH2101 and MH2802)​ OR (CZ1016 and MH2802) OR (CY1602 and CY1307)
PH3501
Fluid Mechanics


4 AU | Semester 1
The physics of fluid motion. Topics include equations of flow, compressible and incompressible fluids, and dynamical phenomena in fluids.

Prerequisite: PH2104.
PH3502
Chaotic Dynamical Systems


4 AU | Currently not offered
Basic concepts of determinism and randomness in the physical world. Topics include dynamical system theory, and the computational and analytical methods for studying chaotic and nonlinear systems.

Prerequisite: PH2104.
PH3601
Fabrication of Micro- and Nanoelectronic Devices


4 AU | Semester 1
Principles and techniques for fabricating micro- and nano-electronic devices. Topics include semiconductor-based device fabrication and magnetic, organic and bioMEMS devices.

Prerequisite: PH2102
PH3602
Photonics​


4 AU | Semester 1
Fundamental concepts and principles of photonics. Topics include optoelectronic systems, discrete devices, and optical communications.

Prerequisites: PH2101 and PH2301.
PH3603
Biophysics


3 AU | Semester 2
Introduction to how physics approaches living matter. Topics include molecular biophysics, structural biology, and common biophysical methods used to investigate the structure and dynamics of biomolecules.

Prerequisite: PH2103.

Year 4 Courses

Note: not all Year 4 courses are offered yearly. “Even AYs” refers to academic years (AYs) beginning in an even calendar year (e.g., AY2020/2021). “Odd AYs” refers to AYs beginning in an odd calendar year (e.g., AY2021/2022).

For example, an “Even AY” Semester 2 course will be offered in AY2020/2021, even though the Semester 2 instruction period takes place in an odd calendar year (2021).

Course Contents
PH4401
Quantum Mechanics III


4 AU | Semester 2 | Yearly
Advanced concepts in quantum mechanics, with a focus on the quantum behavior of multi-particle systems. Topics include scattering theory, quantum entanglement, and the creation and annihlation of particles. The analytical and numerical methods taught in this course provide the theoretical background for advanced courses in quantum field theory, high energy physics, and condensed matter physics.

Prerequisite: PH3101.
PH4402
Condensed Matter Physics II


4 AU | Semester 1 | Even AYs
Advanced concepts in solid state physics. Topics include the theories and models for condensed matter, collective phenomena, structure and bonding, electron-electron interactions, electronic transport and scattering, semiconductor physics, and magnetism.

Prerequisite: PH3201 and PH3102.
PH4403
Surfaces and Interfaces


4 AU | Semester 1 | Yearly
Key concepts in surface and interface science, with a focus on electronic structures. Topics include the thermodynamics of surface phenomena, Schottky barriers and band offsets in semiconductors, band engineering, and analytical techniques such as scanning tunneling microscopy and photoemission.

Prerequisite: PH3102.
PH4404
Nanoscale Physics​


3 AU | Semester 2 | Yearly
How quantum mechanical behavior emerges in condensed matter systems at the nanometer scale. This course provides an overview of nanoscale phenomena that can be observed experimentally, and the analytical skills for describing them. Students will acquire the knowledge required to follow or perform research in applied nanoscience and technology.

Prerequisite: PH3101 and PH3102.
PH4408
Nuclear Physics


3 AU | Semester 1 | Yearly
The structure of nuclei and their properties. Topics include the properties of nuclei, nuclear structure, selection rules for alpha, beta and gamma decay processes, nuclear lifetimes, and nuclear reactors and nuclear power.

Prerequisite: PH3101
PH4409
Quantum Electronics


4 AU | Semester 2 | Odd AYs
Advanced topics in photonics and optical technology, including classical linear and nonlinear optics, semiclassical and quantum models of light-matter interaction, lasers, and the generation of short laser pulses.

Prerequisites: PH3101 and PH3602.
PH4410
Econophysics


3 AU | Currently not offered
Approaches to economics and finance inspired by statistical physics. Topics include basic concepts in probability and statistics, Gaussian and fat-tailed return distributions, time series, random matrix theory, correlation filtering and minimal spanning trees, and agent-based models of financial markets.

Prerequisite: PH3201 or MH2500.
PH4411
Introduction to Experimental Particle Physics


3 AU | Semester 1 | Yearly
Survey of particle physics for advanced undergraduates and beginning graduate students. Topics include the Standard Model of quarks, leptons and the fundamental interactions, tests of conservation laws, probes of physics beyond the Standard Model, experimental techniques in particle physics, and current and future experimental challenges.

Prerequisite: division approval.
PH4414
Introduction to Spintronics


4 AU | Semester 2 | Even AYs
Introduction to magnetics and spintronics technologies, which are used in hard disk drives and the emerging field of magnetic random access memory. Topics include the fundamentals of magnetism, magnetic recording technologies, and spintronic devices.


Prerequisites: PH2102 and PH3102.
PH4418
Physics in the Industry​


4 AU | Semester 2 | Yearly
Introduction to physics-related industries, including how physics is applied to a wide range of industries. Students taking this course can make more informed decisions on the industries that suit their career interests.

Prerequisites: PH3101 and PH3102.
PH4419
Computational Physics


4 AU | Semester 2 | Yearly
Use of computational methods for studying complex physical situations, such as multi-dimensional systems, nonlinear phenomena, and stochastic phenomena. Emphasis is placed on practical analysis, problem-solving, and debugging skills, which are developed through programming assignments involving problems in electromagnetism, quantum mechanics, and statistical mechanics.

Prerequisite: PH3101.
PH4501
Statistical Mechanics II


4 AU | Semester 1 | Odd AYs
Advanced course in statistical mechanics and its applications to complex physical systems. Topics include thermodynamic systems in equilibrium, entropy, thermodynamic ensembles, the equipartition theorem, Fermi-Dirac and Bose-Einstein statistics, quantum fluids, and the properties of classical liquids.

Prerequisites: PH3101 and PH3201.
PH4506
Electrodynamics​


4 AU | Semester 1 | Odd AYs
Advanced course in the dynamics of electromagnetic fields. Topics include advanced techniques in vector calculus, the description of electrodynamic phenomena using Lorentz covariant tensors, and gauge theories.


Prerequisite: PH2102.
PH4507
Topics in Physics


3 AU | Currently not offered
Special course in theoretical physics. Currently not offered.

Prerequisite: division approval.
PH4508
Introduction to General Relativity


3 AU | Semester 2 | Even AYs
Introduction to Einstein’s general theory of relativity, the most accepted classical theory of gravitation, covering the mathematical formulation of general relativity and its observable consequences.

Prerequisite: PH2102 and PH2104.
PH4509
Quantum Field Theory with applications in Condensed Matter Physics


4 AU | Semester 2 | Even AYs
Introduction to the quantum theory of fields. Topics include the basic methods of quantum field theory and its applications to particle physics to many-body problems in condensed matter physics.


Prerequisite: PH3101.
PH4510
Topics in Physics II


3 AU | Currently not offered
Special course in theoretical physics. Currently not offered.

Prerequisite: division approval.​
PH4601
Physics of Semiconductor and Spintronics Devices


4 AU | Semester 2 | Odd AYs
Introduction to solid state devices, with an emphasis on the modern microelectronics industry. Topics include the electronic band structures of semiconductors, defects, the drift, diffusion and recombination of charge carriers, p-n junctions, diodes, and magnetic devices.

Prerequisite: PH3102.
PH4603
Soft Condensed Matter Physics


3 AU | Semester 2 | Yearly
Introduction to the physics of soft matter, such as colloids, foams, granular media and liquid crystals. The course will cover both the theoretical concepts and the experimental methods used to develop and study soft matter.

Prerequisite: PH2103.
PH4604
Topics in Applied Physics


3 AU | Currently not offered
Special course in applied physics. Currently not offered.

Prerequisite: division approval.
PH4605
Medical Physics for Radiotherapy


4 AU | Semester 2 | Yearly
Fundamentals of radiation physics, with a focus on clinical applications. Topics include the basic concepts and techniques of dosimetry, treatment planning, radiobiology, radiotherapy, and radiation safety.

Prerequisite: PH3101
PH4607/CM4017
Biomedical Imaging and Sensing


3 AU | Semester 1 | Yearly
Introduction to cutting-edge biosensing and bioimaging techniques. This course emphasises how basic physics principles are applied to instruments for biosensing and imaging, and implications for the treatment of medical problems.

Prerequisite: PH2301 or CM3041.
PH4608
Plasmonics and Metamaterials


3 AU | Semester 2 | Odd AYs
The physics of plasmonic devices and metamaterials, which are used to manipulate electromagnetic waves at nanometer length scales. The course emphasises state-of-the-art developments at the intersection of photonics, solid state physics, and spectroscopy.


Prerequisite: PH2102.
PH4609
Topics in Applied Physics II


3 AU | Currently not offered
Special course in applied physics. Currently not offered.

Prerequisite: division approval.

FYP/Attachment/Internship Courses

The following modules are available for students admitted in 2016 or later, for the completion of their Final Year Project and internship/attachment degree requirements.

Course Contents
PH4415
Final Year Project


11 AU
For students admitted 2016-2018
Two-semester research project, supervised by a faculty member, culminating in a thesis report and a seminar presentation.
Click here for more information.

Prerequisites: 12 AU of PH3XXX courses.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking the 22-week internship (PH4417).
For students admitted 2019 or later, the Final Year Project is PH4421.
PH4416
Professional Attachment


5 AU | Pass/Fail
For students admitted 2016 and after
Ten-week attachment in an approved company or institution.
Click here for more information.

Prerequisites: PH1104, PH1105, PH1106, PH1107, PH1198, PH1199, PH2101, PH2102, PH2103, PH2104, PH2198, and PH2199; or by permission.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking PH4417 or other internship modules.
PH4417
Professional Internship


11 AU | Pass/Fail
For students admitted 2016- 2018
Twenty-two week internship in an approved company or institution.
Click here for more information.

Prerequisites: PH1104, PH1105, PH1106, PH1107, PH1198, PH1199, PH2101, PH2102, PH2103, PH2104, PH2198, PH2199, PH3101, and PH3102; or by permission.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking PH4416 or other internship modules, or the Final Year Project (PH4415 or PH4421).
PH4420
Professional Internship


10 AU | Pass/Fail
For students admitted 2019 and after
Twenty-week internship in an approved company or institution.
Click here for more information.

Prerequisites: PH1104, PH1105, PH1106, PH1107, PH1198, PH1199, PH2101, PH2102, PH2103, PH2104, PH2198, PH2199, PH3101, and PH3102; or by permission.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking PH4416 or other internship modules, or the Final Year Project (PH4415 or PH4421), or PH4703 OEP6, PH4704 OEP6, PH4900, or PH4901.
​PH4421
Final Year Project


10 AU
For students admitted 2019 and after
Two-semester research project, supervised by a faculty member, culminating in a thesis report and a seminar presentation.
Click here for more information.

Prerequisites: 12 AUs of PH3XXX courses.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking PH4417 or other internship module, or the Final Year Project (PH4415 or PH4421), or PH4701, OEP12, PH4702 OEP12, PH4703 OEP6, PH4704 OEP6, PH4900, or PH4901.

Legacy FYP/Attachment/Internship Courses

The following modules are only available for students admitted in 2015 or earlier, for the completion of their Final Year Project and internship/attachment degree requirements.

Course Contents
PH4405
Final Year Project


10 AU
For students admitted 2015 or earlier
Two-semester research project, supervised by a faculty member, culminating in a thesis report and a seminar presentation.

Not available to students admitted AY16/17 or later.
PH4412
Professional Attachment


4 AU | Pass/Fail
For students admitted 2015
Ten-week attachment in an approved company or institution.

Not available to students admitted AY16/17 or later.
PH4413
Professional Internship


10 AU | Pass/Fail
For students admitted 2015
Twenty-two week internship in an approved company or institution.

Not available to students admitted AY16/17 or later.

Physics Courses For Non-Physics Majors

Course Contents
PH1011
Physics


3 AU | Semester 1 & 2
This course aims to equip you with the basic concepts and problem solving skills in Mechanics, Thermal Physics and Electricity & Magnetism. You will develop physical intuition and analytical skills which are important for studying physical systems and solve problems involving the above three areas of Physics. These knowledge and skills lay the foundation for subsequent higher level courses and are also critical in the engineering profession. 

Prerequisite: Physics at A or H2 level, or equivalent.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking CY1305, CY1306, FE1001, FE1011, IM1091, MS1001, PH1012, PH1104, PH1106, or PH116S.
This course is also offered as a GER-PE (STS).
PH1012
Physics A


4 AU | Semester 1 & 2
This course aims to equip you with the basic concepts and problem solving skills in Mechanics,Thermal Physics and Electricity & Magnetism. You will develop physical intuition and analytical skills which are important for studying physical systems and solve problems involving the above three areas of Physics. These knowledge and skills lay the foundation for subsequent higher level courses and are also critical in the engineering profession. 

Not available to students who have taken/are taking CY1305, CY1306, FE1001, FE1011, FE1012, IM1090, PH1011, PH1104, PH1106, PH116S, AERO(2004-2011), CEE(2004-2011), or ENE(2004-2011).

This course is also offered as a GER-PE (STS).
PH1801
Foundations of Physics I


3 AU | Pass/Fail | Semester 1
Fundamentals of physics, with an emphasis on practical applications in engineering, the biomedical sciences, and other fields. Students also learn how to read scientific material effectively, identify fundamental concepts, reason through scientific questions, and solve quantitative problems.
  1. Mechanics
  2. Wave motion
  3. Thermodynamics

Prerequisite: mathematics at the A or H2 level, or equivalent.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking PH1104.
For CBC students, this course may be replaced with PH1104.
PH1802
Foundations of Physics II


3 AU | Pass/Fail | Semester 2
Fundamentals of physics, with an emphasis on practical applications in engineering, the biomedical sciences, and other fields.
  1. Electricity and magnetism.
  2. Optics.
  3. Modern physics.

Prerequisite: PH1801.
Not available to students who have taken/are taking PH1106. For CBC students, this course may be replaced with PH1106.

Unrestricted Electives

Course Contents
PH2901
Electronics for the Experimentalist


3 AU | Semester 2
Basic concepts and applications of electronic elements and circuits. Topics include analog and digital electronics, tools for circuit design and board layout, and typical circuits for scientific instrumentation. The course includes laboratory sessions providing hands-on experiments with various prototype circuits, and a project to design and realize a simple electronic device.

PH2999
Undergraduate Research Experience in Physics I


3 AU | Pass/Fail | Semester 1 & 2
Introduction to physics research, supervised by a faculty member. Suitable for undergradautes from year 2 onwards. Research topics are determined by the faculty supervisors.

Prerequisite: division approval.
PH3999
Undergraduate Research Experience in Physics II

3 AU | Semester 1 & 2
Introduction to physics research, supervised by a faculty member. Suitable for undergradautes from year 3 onwards. Research topics are determined by the faculty supervisors.

Prerequisite: Division approval.
PS9886
Making and Tinkering Lite I


2 AU | Pass/Fail | Semester 2
Introduction to useful technological skills including computer-controlled electronics, 3D printing, and techniques for building basic equipment and products related to Science and Technology.

Click here for more information.

This course is also offered as Major Prescribed Elective for Applied Physics students.
​PS9887
Making and Tinkering Lite II


2 AU | Pass/Fail | Semester 2
Introduction to useful technological skills including computer simulation, prototyping with 3D printing, and other techniques for building basic equipment and products related to Science and Technology.

Click here for more information.

Prerequisite: School approval

This course also offered as a Major Prescribed Elective for Applied Physics students.
PS9888
Making and Tinkering


4 AU | Special Terms
A special course in applying scientific knowledge to open-ended real life problems. Students work together to identify a problem, and create a prototype to solve it.

Click here for more information.

Prerequisite: School approval

Other Core Requirements for Physics Majors

Course Contents
MH1401
Algorithms and Computing I


2 AU | For physics students admitted AY17/8 or earlier
Fundamental concepts of programming. See the MAS course information page for details.
MH1402
Algorithms and Computing II


2 AU | For physics students admitted AY17/8 or earlier​
Introduction to computer algorithms. See the MAS course information page for details.
MH1802
Calculus for the Sciences


4 AU | Semester 1
Introduction to calculus and differential equations. See the MAS course information page for details.

For physics majors admitted AY17/18 or later.
MH1803
Calculus for Physics


 4 AU | Semester 2
Introduction to vector calculus and partial differential equations. See the MAS course information page for details.

For physics majors admitted AY17/18 or later.
MH2801
Complex Methods for the Sciences


3 AU | Semester 1
Introduction to complex methods, with an emphasis on physical applications. See the MAS course information page for details.
MH2802
Linear Algebra for Scientists


3 AU | Semester 2
Introduction to linear algebra, with an emphasis on physical applications. See the MAS course information page for details.

For physics students admitted AY17/18 or later.
MH1800
Calculus for the Sciences I


3 AU | For physics students admitted AY16/17 or earlier
Fundamental techniques of calculus. See the MAS course information page for details.
MH1801
Calculus for the Sciences II


3 AU | For physics students admitted AY16/17 or earlier
Fundamental techniques of calculus. See the MAS course information page for details.
MH2800
Linear Algebra and Multivariable Calculus


4 AU | For physics students admitted AY16/17 or earlier
Introduction to linear algebra and multivariable calculus. See the MAS course information page for details.
​ ​​​​​​ ​