Physical Sciences

B.A. (Moderatorship) Honours Bachelor Degree (NFQ Level 8)
NFQ: Level 8
72 Places
CAO Points 510 (2023)
CAO Code TR063


What is the study of Physics?

Did you ever wonder why your smart phone battery needs to be recharged? Or why planets and stars don’t crash into each other? From particles to planets, from crystals to chaos, from quanta to quasars and from superconductors to supernovae, physics can explain and answer many of our questions and curiosities.

Physical Sciences (TR063) at Trinity is a four year degree programme for students who like to solve problems. Whether it is studying galaxies, examining the potential of new lasers or investigating next generation nanomaterials, this degree pathway will prepare you for a lifelong career of solving problems in research, industry or business.

Why Physics at Trinity?

In the School of Physics our presence at the forefront of cutting-edge research allows us to contribute to ground- breaking advances relevant to society today. Our interdisciplinary approach to research requires national and global collaborations – an approach that influences our teaching and students' mindset. In your fourth year of this programme, you will develop specialist research knowledge by carrying out a Capstone research project in our state-of-the-art facilities or with one of our collaborators in Ireland or abroad (including US, UK, France, Germany, China and Australia).

As well as practical knowledge of the subject, our programme is designed to help you to develop many other transferable skills valued by both employers and the wider community. These range from critical thinking and problem-solving skills to understanding complex mathematical/physical behaviour. Every year, graduates from all our degree courses are drawn from a range of sectors of industry, business and society are invited back to share their experiences with our current students. Our student societies host a career fair for students so you can meet employers. The School of Physics annual Alumni Careers Networking evenings enable you to hear from a range of graduates what they are doing in their careers today.

Our physics degrees have been accredited by the Institute of Physics, the professional body for physicists in Ireland and the UK. This opens up a pathway to become a ‘Chartered Physicist’ (CPhys). Since 2017, Trinity is also a member of LERU, a League of European Research Universities in recognition of our outstanding education, research and innovation; something that you will experience first-hand in our physics programmes.

Structure of Physical Sciences (TR063) programme

First and second years

In first and second year, you will study foundation topics in physics including classical and quantum mechanics, electromagnetism, special relativity, and thermodynamics through our lectures, tutorials and computational and experimental laboratory classes. This will be hand-in-hand with the study of mathematics and your choice of open modules from other science subjects. These strong foundations in physics and mathematics will allow you to study more advanced topics in the physics, astrophysics and nanoscience degree programmes in later years.

Third and fourth years

In third and fourth year, all students study central topics such as quantum mechanics, statistical physics and condensed matter physics. In addition each student must opt to specialise in one of our three moderatorships:


Advanced topics include magnetism, semiconductor devices, materials and electronic structure, superconductivity, nanoscience, modern and non-linear optics, nuclear physics and structure, high energy physics and optional topics such as energy science, polymers, soft matter, and computer simulation and energy science.

Physics and Astrophysics

Specialised astrophysics topics include stellar and galactic structures, planetary and space science and cosmology together with nuclear physics and structure, and high energy physics.


Advanced topics include nanoscience, condensed matter physics, specialist courses in thin films, polymers, soft matter, solid state chemistry, electrochemistry, photochemistry, all emphasising nanomaterials.

All have tailored practical courses developing appropriate laboratory, experimental, computational and analysis skills as well as participation in research-level final year Capstone projects carried out in a research laboratory in Trinity or in another university, research institute or astrophysical observatory (including US, UK, France, Germany, China and Australia).

Click here for further information on modules/subject.

Study Physical Sciences at Trinity

An introduction to the undergraduate programmes in Physical Sciences at Trinity College Dublin by the Course Director, Assistant Professor Cormac McGuinness.

Course Details


B.A. (Moderatorship) Honours Bachelor Degree (NFQ Level 8)

CAO Information

CAO Points 510 (2023) CAO Code TR063

Number of Places

72 Places
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Course Options

Students who wish to study the Physical Sciences stream (TR063) will specialise in one of the following subjects in third and fourth year: Physics; Physics and Astrophysics; or Nanoscience.

Alternatively, the separate entry Theoretical Physics (TR035) degree shares this physics problem-solving approach and places an even greater emphasis on the underlying mathematical complexity of the universe.

Students who wish to specialise in Nanoscience can also enter the Chemical Sciences stream (TR061).

Related courses:

Science - TR060 Biological and Biomedical Sciences

Science - TR061 Chemical Sciences

Science - TR062 Geography and Geoscience

Admission Requirements

Leaving Certificate:

H6 or O4 in Mathematics

H4 in two of Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics, Physics/Chemistry, Geography, Computer Science, Applied Mathematics or Agricultural Science


Grade B/6 in Mathematics

Advanced GCE (A-Level):

Grade C in two of Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geology, Physics/Chemistry, Geography, Computer Science, Applied Mathematics or Agricultural Science

International Baccalaureate: 

SL Grade 5 in Mathematics

HL Grade 5 in two of Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geology, Physics/Chemistry, Geography, Computer Science, Applied Mathematics or Agricultural Science

Certain combinations of subjects are not permitted, including:

  • Physics/Chemistry with Physics or Chemistry.
  • Agricultural Science with Biology.
  • Applied Mathematics with Mathematics.

Course Fees

Click here for a full list of undergraduate fees.


To apply to this course, click on the relevant Apply Link below

EU Applicants

Read the information about how to apply, then apply directly to CAO.

    Non-EU Applicants

    Advanced Entry Applications

    Read the information about how to apply for Advanced Entry, then select the link below to apply.

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