• Offered by Research School of Physics and Engineering
  • ANU College ANU Joint Colleges of Science
  • Course subject Physics
  • Areas of interest Engineering
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • AsPr Nicholas Robins
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in First Semester 2019
    See Future Offerings

Course incompatible with ENGN1215. Students who commenced in 2018 should enrol in ENGN1215; students who commenced in 2019 should enrol in PHYS1013.

Materials science lies at the foundation of today’s world. Most technological advances rely on new materials, such as carbon fibres for aircraft wings, novel semiconductors for self-driving car sensors, or highperformance insulators in ski-wear. This course discusses the properties of materials that engineers need to be aware of. This includes mechanical, thermal, electrical, chemical and optical properties. All these properties are controlled by the microscopic structure of these materials, and this course will cover the quantum mechanics, atomic physics and thermodynamics that control what materials can do. The course will focus on the structure and properties of crystalline materials, and on how these properties can be manipulated to create more capable materials.
This course is a requirement for all Engineering students but will also be of interest to physics and chemistry students.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
  1. Describe the mechanical, electrical, thermal and optical properties of materials;
  2. Analyse the importance of material properties for a wide variety of engineering situations;
  3. Evaluate and select suitable materials for different practical applications;
  4. Recall typical values of the properties of common practical materials;
  5. Understand the micro-physics and chemistry responsible for material properties, and analyse how they can be modified.

Indicative Assessment

Assessment will be based on:
  • Weekly assignments 50% (LO 1-3,5)
  • Final examination 50% (LO 1-5)

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


One 3 hour workshop per week. Optional drop-in session. 6-7 hours per week of homework.

Assumed Knowledge

Physics to year 12 or physics bridging course. Maths to the level of at least Maths Methods toyear 12 or equivalent.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2019 $3840
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2019 $5460
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings and Dates

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
4599 25 Feb 2019 04 Mar 2019 31 Mar 2019 31 May 2019 In Person N/A

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