In the Fall semester 2013, the Sciences and Engineering Department of the Paris-Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi (PSUAD) launched the Bachelor of Physics programme under a collaborative agreement with the world renowned University of Pierre and Marie Curie (UPMC) in Paris.
The Bachelor of Physics programme is a three year undergraduate programme taught in English and is the only Bachelor dedicated to physics and mathematics in the UAE and is accredited in both the UAE and in France.
The Department consists of active researchers in physics and mathematics. It offers a curriculum of theoretical courses complimented with hands-on applied lab courses. Numerous field trips around Abu Dhabi and surrounding areas allow students to see first-hand how physics and mathematics are applied in high-rise buildings, construction projects, and the many museum, heritage, and recreational sites that make up the dynamic development of the UAE.
The Bachelor of Physics programme is a three-year academic programme. The language of instruction for the Physics programme is English with the curriculum developed from the academic programme that is offered at UPMC.
The programme provides students with a strong framework of mathematics, physics, and computer science courses as well as laboratory opportunities to acquire practical knowledge related to solving real-world problems. Courses in the French language and the History of Sciences are included in the curriculum to provide a broad exposure to heritage and culture to round out the students’ overall learning experience.
Designed to prepare students in the multifaceted field of physics, this innovative degree provides students with key practical skills and interdisciplinary knowledge in natural and applied physics, to help them address today’s global challenges.
In short, the Bachelor of Physics programme offered at the PSUAD provides students with a world-class education to become thinkers, problem solvers, and innovators who are prepared to find their professional place in the exciting scientific world of the 21st Century.
Evolution of the key scientific topics over the three years
During the Licence, each semester, students are required to take one French course and one Active Science project-based course —the exception to the Active Science course being in the final semester of L3, at which point students are required to take an internship training off campus. The internship can be conducted at research laboratories, government institutes, or major industrial firms.
Each course is worth a certain amount of ECTS (European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System). One semester is worth 30 credits.
Teaching methodology involves lectures and tutorials, laboratory sessions, a project each semester, written technical reports, presentations to an audience, internships, one-on- one follow-up and support, and field trips to laboratories, institutes, production plants, and other places of interest.
“93% of UPMC graduates have a job, according to a recent survey of Master and PhD graduates.”
Upon graduation from the Bachelor of Physics programme, students will be prepared to pursue graduate degrees in physics, engineering, teaching, or other professions. Students could join the workforce directly after graduation pursuing a career in physics as an engineering associate in a laboratory, government institute, or major industrial firm, as journalists in science and popular science, a sale representatives for technical products, or as entrepreneurs.
For those who wish to pursue further studies, the options range from the 13 different tracks at UPMC in Paris, under a two year programme leading to research, engineering, or teaching, as well as any relevant Masters programme in the UAE and abroad, including many prestigious French engineering schools. The Master degree will enable students to join the workforce as engineers or join the academic community as university professors and instructors.
Current student feedback has shown that the interactive student/teacher atmosphere of the Bachelor of Physics programme is valued with students playing an integral part. In addition, the students found that learning in a variety of ways (theory courses, hands-on labs, active science projects, and visits to sites in and around Abu Dhabi) has provided a dynamic environment where the study of mathematics and physics is exciting and meaningful.