Taught course

Particles, Strings and Cosmology

Durham University · Department of Mathematical Sciences

Entry requirements

A good second class honours degree (2.1 Honours) or international equivalent in either Physics or Mathematics. English Language requirements Please check requirements for your subject and level of study.

Months of entry


Course content

This is a one year advanced taught course. The aim of this course is to bring students in 12 months to the frontier of elementary particle theory. This course is intended for students who have already obtained a good first degree in either physics or mathematics, including in the latter case courses in quantum mechanics and relativity.

The course consists of three modules: the first two are the Michaelmas and Epiphany graduate lecture courses, which are assessed by examinations in January and March. The third module is a dissertation on a topic of current research, prepared under the guidance of a supervisor with expertise in the area. We offer a wide variety of possible dissertation topics. The dissertation must be submitted by September 15th, the end of the twelve month course period.

Course Structure

The main group of lectures are given in the first two terms of the academic year (Michaelmas and Epiphany). This part of the lecture course is assessed by examinations. In each term there are two teaching periods of four weeks, with a week's break in the middle of the term in which students will be able to revise the material. Most courses are either eight lectures or 16 lectures in length. There are 14 lectures/week in the Michaelmas term and 14 lectures/week in Epiphany term.

Core Modules
  • Introductory Field Theory
  • Group Theory
  • Standard Model
  • General Relativity
  • Quantum Electrodynamics
  • Quantum Field Theory
  • Conformal Field Theory
  • Supersymmetry
  • Anomalies
  • Strong Interaction Physics
  • Cosmology
  • Superstrings and D-branes
  • Non-Perturbative Physics
  • Euclidean Field Theory
  • Flavour Physics and Effective Field Theory
  • Neutrinos and Astroparticle Physics
  • 2d Quantum Field Theory.
Optional Modules available in previous years included:
  • Differential Geometry for Physicists
  • Boundaries and Defects in Integrable Field Theory
  • Computing for Physicists.

Information for international students

English Language requirements Please check requirements for your subject and level of study.

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

Scholarships and funding


Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months

Course contact details

Department of Mathematical Sciences
(0)191 334 3082