PHY-10024 - Nature of matter
Coordinator: Patrick Connell Room: LJ 2.03 Tel: +44 1782 7 34922
Lecture Time: See Timetable...
Level: Level 4
Credits: 15
Study Hours: 150
School Office: 01782 734921

Programme/Approved Electives for 2023/24


Available as a Free Standing Elective






Barred Combinations


Description for 2023/24

In this his module you will study the subject material that bridges the gap between pre-university study and the first year of a university Physics/Astrophysics course. In addition, you will study the nature of solid and gaseous matter from the classical picture to the need for a quantum description. As part of this module, you will get the foundation which is required for more advanced study of quantum physics, thermodynamics and solid state physics in the second year. As part of the laboratory component you will do experiments relevant to some of the subject matter delivered in lectures.

To provide an understanding of the behaviour of gases and solids in terms of the atomic and quantum nature of matter, and to provide insight into some of these topics through laboratory work. To develop skills in the solving of physics problems.

Talis Aspire Reading List
Any reading lists will be provided by the start of the course.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Understand basic concepts in classical physics and their application to gases and solids: 1,2,3
Solving physical problems by using the skills learned: 3
Carry out laboratory experiments, keep a complete, accurate and professional account of the work. Communicate the results in a professional manner via laboratory reports. Manipulate data using IT. Develop algorithms and write simple code: 2
Understanding of (i) inadequacy of classical physics and (ii) the need for quantum theory to understand gases and solids: 1,3

Study hours

Lectures 24h
Laboratory sessions 36h
Problem sheets 18h
Laboratory reports 24h
Directed reading/independent study 46h
Examination 2h

School Rules


Description of Module Assessment

1: Unseen Exam weighted 40%
2-hour unseen written examination
2-hour exam (100 marks) with a degree of choice.

2: Laboratory Report weighted 40%
Continuous assessment of a laboratory diary containing several experiments (weight 30%). Assessment of formal two lab reports (weight 60%) which are equivalent to 1000 words per report. Assessment of the use of computer software in the analysis of laboratory measurements (weight 10%).

3: Problem Sheets weighted 20%
Problem Sheets
Students complete a number of problem sheets. Equivalent to ~1000 words.