Our reputation

The Sir William Henry Bragg Building

The Sir William Henry Bragg Building adapts the original Grade II*-listed Old Mining Building as part of its modern development.

The School of Physics and Astronomy has a long history of award-winning and impactful research and teaching. William H Bragg conducted his Nobel Prize-winning research at Leeds and we’re able to lay claim to the development of Bragg's Law for X-Ray Diffraction, the origin and nature of magnetism, the creation of Barr and Stroud, spintronics, microbubbles and many other great accomplishments.

Our Physics, Theoretical Physics and Physics with Astrophysics undergraduate courses are accredited by the Institute of Physics and we have just over 600 students from 35 countries studying with us.

The quality of our research, and the funding it attracts, means we’re able to invest in world-class facilities and academic staff who are actively engaged in cutting-edge research, which means you will be taught by internationally renowned, inspirational academics working at the top of their fields.

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Academic excellence

  • The University of Leeds is ranked 82nd in the world, QS World University Rankings 2025
  • University of Leeds students are among the top 5 most targeted by top employers according to The Graduate Market 2024, High Fliers Research
  • We are a member of the Russell Group of research-intensive universities
  • 99% of research activity submitted by the School of Physics and Astronomy was rated as “world-leading” or “internationally excellent” by the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021

Gender equality

We have been commended for our strong and continued commitment to gender equality in the form of a prestigious Athena SWAN Silver award

Institute of Physics Project Juno

We have been awarded 'Juno Practitioner' status. The aim of Project Juno is to recognise and reward physics departments, schools, institutes and organisations that can demonstrate they have taken action to address gender equality in physics and to encourage better practice for all staff.

Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021

Every six years, the UK’s four higher education funding bodies undertake an exercise to measure the quality of research undertaken by UK higher education institutions (HEIs). The funding bodies use the outcomes to inform the allocation of their research funding to HEIs. The Research Excellence Framework was the framework used in 2021.

Unit of assessment: Physics

  • 99% of research activity submitted was rated as “world-leading” or “internationally excellent” 
  • 100% of impact case studies submitted was classified as “world-leading” or “internationally excellent”