The photonics research groups in the physics departments of Heriot-Watt and St. Andrews Universities are internationally renowned, and have many links with industrial and university groups around the world. Major activities are based around optoelectronics, laser development, semiconductor physics, materials technology, ultra-fast phenomena, modern optics, and instrumentation. This expertise is brought to the teaching of our one-year taught MSc course.
Previously called Optoelectronic and Laser Devices, this MSc course has been updated and enhanced, recognising the explosive growth of the UK and global photonics industry, fostered by the world-wide expansion in the exploitation of optical in telecommunications.
Students spend one semester at each university, and then undertake a three-month research project, normally in a UK company. Companies participating in recent years include Bookham Technologies, BAE Systems, Edinburgh Sensors, Cambridge Display Technology, Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, Indigo Photonics, Intense Photonics, Kamelian, Nortel, Renishaw, Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, Thales, Sharp and QinetiQ.
Course contentDetailed course guide
Students receive postgraduate training in modern optics and semiconductor physics tailored to the needs of the optoelectronics industries. Graduates gain an understanding of the fundamental properties of optoelectronic materials and optical fibres, and experience of the technology and operation of a wide range of laser semiconductor devices appropriate to the telecommunications, information technology, sensing, and manufacturing industries.
Applicants for the course are expected to have a first or second class honours degree in physics, applied physics, electronic engineering, or equivalent qualifications. Lesser qualifications combined with relevant industrial experience may also be suitable.
English language requirements
If your first language is not English, or your first degree was not taught in English, we’ll need to see evidence of your English language ability. The minimum requirement for English language is IELTS 6.5 or equivalent. We offer a range of English language courses to help you meet the English language requirement prior to starting your masters programme:
- 14 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with no more than one skill at 4.5);
- 10 weeks English (for IELTS of 5.5 with minimum of 5.0 in all skills);
- 6 weeks English (for IELTS 5.5 with minimum of 5.5 in reading & writing and minimum of 5.0 in speaking & listening)
|Scotland / Non-UK EU||£7168||£3584||£896**|
|England / Northern Ireland / Wales||£7168||£3584||£896**|
* If you are unsure which category you fall in to, you should complete a fee status enquiry form, which allows us to assess your fees.
** Fee per course (module). Refer to the Course Content to see how many courses comprise the full programme.
Scholarships and bursaries
We aim to encourage well-qualified, ambitious students to study with us and we offer a wide variety of scholarships and bursaries to achieve this. Over £6 million worth of opportunities are available in fee and stipend scholarships, and more than 400 students benefit from this support.
View our full range of postgraduate taught scholarships.