Photonics Science

Photonics Science

Without photonics we wouldn’t have products such as DVDs, digital cameras, flat-panel displays, laser scanners or many biomedical instruments. Photonics is also intrinsic to many technologies for medicine, environmental monitoring, advanced computers, machine vision and manufacturing.

At Macquarie you’ll combine the professionally oriented study of physics, optics, materials science and electronics.


Postgraduate Courses

Degree 2018 ATAR
Master of Research (Science and Engineering) N/A

Photonics is intrinsic to many technologies for:

  • medicine
  • environmental monitoring
  • advanced computers
  • machine vision
  • manufacturing.

The Bachelor of Science Major in Photonics combines the studies of physics, optics, materials science and electronics in a professionally oriented degree, incorporating nanophotonics, biophotonics, and technologies such as lasers, optical fibres and communications.

You will develop industry relevant skills including:

  • technical writing and communications skills
  • technology management
  • practical skills using modern instrumentation.

Placement in a local technology company in your final semester, in an industry-based project, enhances your employment opportunities.

Professional experience

Test your theoretical knowledge of photonoics in the real-world through mutually beneficial projects with industry professionals.

Through PACE, photonics students have studied the operation principle of an existing fibre-optic hydrophone and its performance and characterisation method to detect the localisation of leaks within an urban water pipe system.

Over the course of the project students gained important hands-on experience and new industry knowledge with the characterisation and experimentation of the sensor system along with a solid understanding in the fibre-optic technology and its application as an acoustic sensor.

No matter what you decide to study at Macquarie, PACE has an activity for you. Learn more about the opportunities available through PACE.

Career options in photonics

There is a strong Australian tradition in photonics and optical fibre technology. Our highly qualified graduates are eagerly sought by employers.

There is an ongoing demand for applied physicists including specialists in the fields of photonics, optics and lasers in industries such as:

  • telecommunications
  • optical components
  • biomedical imaging
  • sensing and defence.

More specifically, by studying this you could end up in :

  • engineering
  • management, education and training
  • postgraduate study
  • science research support
  • technical sales support.

Annual Career Night in September

Our yearly Careers Night brings back to Macquarie a number of recent graduates, who tell us what careers they have chosen, and how their degree has given them the skills they needed to succeed. We invite you to our next Careers Night, but in the meantime offer recording of some of the previous speakers to give you a taste of where Physics and Astronomy can take you.

Find out more and hear talk from past speakers.

Scholarships and prizes

Vacation Scholarships

The department of Physics and Astronomy offers several undergraduate vacation scholarships each year. The scholarships:

  • involve cutting-edge research during the summer vacation
  • are open to undergraduate physics students in Australia
  • have a scholarship of a tax-free stipend of up to $500 per week
  • are available in areas of research excellence
  • are typically awarded for 5 weeks in Jan – Feb

Find out how to apply and projects on offer. 

Macquarie University Undergraduate Scholarship

Macquarie University has a generous scholarship program that awards over $2.5 million to our students. Some of our scholarships have a strong emphasis on social inclusion and are awarded on the basis of financial need and other hardship. Others recognise factors such as academic excellence, sporting achievement and community engagement.
Applications for 2016 open in September 2015 and close early January 2016.

Please visit for more information.

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