Oxford Materials Science: Overview and Entrance Requirements

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The Oxford Materials Science course explores the physics, chemistry, and engineering of materials. It’s crucial for modern advancements like efficient vehicles, digital technology, and medical tools.

The course also delves into understanding the connection between material structure and properties. This then drives the development of novel materials and innovative manufacturing techniques. Notably, Materials Science is indispensable in domains like nanotechnology, quantum computing, energy storage, and medical technologies like biomaterials for bone replacement and drug delivery.

The curriculum encompasses a comprehensive study of materials. This spans mechanical, electrical, magnetic, and optical properties. It covers metals, alloys, ceramics, polymers, composites, and biomaterials, bolstered by excellent laboratory and teaching resources. There are also opportunities for entrepreneurship and language learning.

The unique feature of this programme is a year-long research project in the fourth year. You’ll work with top research teams either within the Materials Department at Oxford or sometimes at overseas universities/industrial laboratories. This project further enhances skills in problem-solving, experimental design, project management, and result communication, all highly valuable across various career paths.

You’ll gain practical experience through summer projects and international tours, enhancing your understanding of industries and research. This course also equips you with knowledge and the hands-on skills needed in the world of Materials Science.

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Minimum Entrance Requirements A-levels – A*AA (with the A* in Maths, Physics or Chemistry)
Advanced Highers – AA/AAB (with AA in Mathematics and Physics)
IB –  40 (including core points) with 766 at HL (including Mathematics and Physics, with 7 at HL in either Mathematics, Physics or Chemistry)  
Admission Test for Materials Science at OxfordPAT (Physics Admissions Test)
Test date: 20 October 2023
Registration deadline: 29 September 2023          
Subject Requirements for Materials Scienceat OxfordMaths and Physics are Essential.
Chemistry is highly recommended.
Further Maths, Design and Technology (Resistant Materials) can also be helpful.
Extras things Oxford Materials Science tutors look forWritten work: None

Reasoning Ability: Tutors look for:
An ability to apply logical reasoning to problems in physical science
An enthusiasm for thinking about new concepts in science and engineering. 
Duration4 years (MEng)
Admissions StatisticsInterviewed: 70%
Successful: 27%
What is Materials Science at Oxford?Material Science at Oxford is an interdisciplinary course centred on the physics, chemistry, and engineering of materials. 
It enables students to understand the relationship between material structure and properties, leading to the development of advanced materials and manufacturing processes. 
The curriculum also covers various material categories. Furthermore, the highlight is a year-long research project that hones problem-solving and project management skills, conducted within top research teams at Oxford or abroad. 
Practical experience through industry projects and international opportunities also equips students with real-world insights and skills. This prepares them for impactful roles in industries like nanotechnology, energy, and healthcare.
Oxford Colleges that offer Materials ScienceCorpus Christi College, Mansfield College, The Queen’s College, St Anne’s College, St Catherine’s College, St Edmund Hall, Trinity College
Structure of the Materials Science Course at OxfordYear 1 & 2
Your work will be divided between lectures (about ten a week), tutorials/classes (about two a week) and practicals (two or three afternoons a week).
Four written papers; continual assessment components equivalent to a fifth paper.
Year 3
Year 3 starts with a two-week team design project, and about eight lectures and two classes/tutorials a week for the first two terms. However, most of the third term is set aside for revision.
Final Assesment Part I incl. Six written papers; continual assessment components equivalent to a further two papers.
Year 4
Year 4 consists of a supervised research project spanning three extended terms and Final Assessment Part II (equivalent to 4 papers). There will also be a project dissertation to submit and an oral examination of the project dissertation.
Common Careers after Materials Science at OxfordGraduates of Materials Science at Oxford secure opportunities in manufacturing industry, both in management and in research and development positions. 
Others enter the financial, consultancy and IT sectors
A significant proportion of graduates undertake research degrees in universities in the UK and abroad.
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