Physics Personal Statement

I am fascinated by problem solving and by discovering how things work. I have realised that Physics answers both of these passions. With a little ingenious creativity, it attempts to find the fundamental laws that govern our universe and describe them elegantly in a set of mathematical equations.

Thus, it allows us to apply these principles to different scenarios so as to gain a greater understanding of how matter works. This was obvious to me from my earliest study of classical mechanics and of basic circuits at school, both of which had me captivated.

My areas of interest developed quickly during my A levels to include a fascination with particle physics introduced by a lecture on the discovery of the Higgs Boson and the evidence behind its discovery.

This interest was enriched by a visit to CERN and reinforced by reading 'Higgs' by Jim Baggott, a book that provided a synoptic history of its development, from the theoretical proposal of the atom through to its experimental discovery.

However, with little coverage at A level, this is an area of interest about which I hope to learn more at university, alongside exploring further the idea of wave-particle duality, the principle that underpins Quantum Theory, and its consequences.

The increasing applications of the theory, from secure banking to testing the effectiveness of HIV drugs using neutron crystallography, spurred me to expand my understanding of the concept beyond the scope of my syllabus. As a result I read 'In Search of Schrödinger's Cat' by John Gribbin, a book that attempts to conceptualize quantum theory in an accessible way.

An Experience Week at the University of Birmingham involved basic self-directed work on gravitational lensing and measuring background radiation. I attended public lectures on topics including physics based techniques for cancer and physics in sport.

Through a week's work experience at the Royal Orthopedic Hospital, contributing to a hospital report, I gained an appreciation of the importance of radiation in diagnosis through to the evaluation of treatments in healthcare.

My interest in the medical application of physics led me to my Extended Project Qualification area of research that incorporated some cost evaluation of widespread screening. My decision to retake Physics A Level was driven by my determination not only to improve my grade but to broaden the scope of my subject knowledge.

Since studying Physics at A level had nurtured a greater passion for Mathematics and its pivotal role in making theoretical predictions, I am taking the opportunity to pursue an intensive one year course in A level Further Mathematics which is allowing me to strengthen my reasoning skills and take logical and creative approaches to a problem.

Through the more diverse range of Pure and Applied Mathematics, I am now developing a broader base, including familiarisation with further methods of integration and the interpretation of statistical data. My continued participation in the Gold Duke of Edinburgh Scheme and equality advocacy has fostered a strong sense of social responsibility.

Utilising this and my natural enjoyment in sharing my skills to others, I have taken on the role of Mathematics mentor for Year 7, carried out reading support sessions for Year 3 at my previous school and continue to volunteer as a coach at my swimming club, where I was a competitive swimmer.

Through all of these activities and from working as part of the Technical Support Team at my former school, I have learned to lead others and be an effective team player, communicating with a wide range of people of all ages. Balancing these commitments with holding a paid part time job as a life guard, has nurtured greater independence.

I believe I can bring the skills I have mentioned above to my undergraduate course, together with a genuine enthusiasm for Physics. In addition, I believe that the course will satisfy my natural curiosity.

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