physical sciences

The field of physical sciences relate to the study of the inorganic world and consist of different branches of science like physics, chemistry, astronomy, and earth sciences. Physical sciences mainly focus on the study of matter, forces, properties of different substances and their interactions. It also covers the study of atmosphere, earth, space and the universe as a whole.

What are the various disciplines under physical sciences?


Physics is the study of the way in which the universe behaves and the laws and relations that govern its behaviour. To put it in a simpler sense, it basically covers the study of matter, motions, forces and energy.


Chemistry is the study of the properties, composition and the different forms of matter.


Astronomy is the study of celestial objects, space and the physical universe as a whole.


Geology is the study of the earth, its physical structure and its constituent substances.


Hydrology is the study of the properties, distribution, quality and movement of water in earth and other planets.

Soil Sciences

Soil science is the study of the formation, mapping, properties and classification of soil.

Atmospheric Sciences

Atmospheric sciences deals with the circulation, composition and physical and chemical properties of the atmosphere.

Forensic Sciences

The field of forensic sciences draws from a number of other scientific disciplines including physics, chemistry and biology, and is used to identify and evaluate physical evidences from the spot of a criminal incident.

Main Admission/Entrance exams Physical Sciences

Name of Exam Institutions Languages Application Period Exam Dates Website
Undergraduate - (UG)
JEE Indian Institute of Science, IISER Hindi, English
  • JEE Main January Session: September
  • April Session: February - March
  • * JEE Advanced: first week of May
  • JEE Main Examination (January session): January first half
  • JEE Main 2019 (April session): Mid April
  • * JEE advanced: Last week of May
NEST NISER English January-March First week of June
All India Entrance Test ( CUET) All India Entrance Test ( CUET) English Starts from December first week April last week
CUSAT CAT Cochin University of Science and Technology English 4th week of January to third week of February April first week
JMI entrance examination Jamia Millia Islamia English February - March May
Postgraduate - (PG)
BITSAT Birla Institute of Science and Technology (Goa,Hyderabad, and Pilani) English January first week to March third week. May second week
JAM IIT (Multiple locations), IISc English September - October February first half
JEST (Joint Entrance Screening Test) National level exam English November-December February second week
CUCET Central universities (10) English February-April Last week of April

What would help you build a good profile for admission at the UG level?

Stream to Choose at +2 level:

Choose Science stream with Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and one of Computer Science/Biology/Biotechnology/Geology along with English.

Subjects to focus:

Physical Science courses mostly require a strong base in Physics and Mathematics. Hence special importance may be given to these subjects at the 10+2 level. For admissions to good institutions, a high aggregate percentage is important. So the student should aim to score high in all subjects.

Some skills to acquire:

Physical sciences courses and careers involve research activities. Critical thinking ability and good research skills are therefore required. Good communication skills and command over English language would also be an advantage for making use of global resources in this field.

Minimum marks:

A minimum of 55% or more in aggregate of Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics is required by reputed universities. Further, 50% or more in English is also insisted upon by some universities.


Name Eligibility Website
KVPY scholarship for Basic Sciences First year undergraduate students in Basic Sciences who have secured a minimum of 60% marks in aggregate in Mathematics and Science subjects in the XII Standard Board Examination and who have qualified in the KVPY examination.
Science scholarships for women Women Scientists conducting research in Basic & Applied Sciences at M.Sc, M.Phil/M.Tech and Ph.D level.
Top class education scheme for SC students SC students who have secured admission in the notified institutions ( Institutes of National Importance, NAAC A++ and A+ ranked institutions, Central Universities, NIRF top 100 Universities etc) according to the norms prescribed by the respective institutions will be eligible for the scholarship under the scheme to the extent of the number of scholarships allocated to the institutes concerned.
INSPIRE scholarship Students who are among the top 1% in 12th standard at their respective Board Examinations and are pursuing courses in Natural and Basic sciences at the B.Sc. or Integrated M.Sc. levels.
UGC PG scholarship for university rank holders Rank holders of each university at undergraduate level are eligible for this scholarship for pursuing postgraduate studies.
Central sector scheme of scholarships Students who are above 80th percentile of successful candidates in the relevant stream from the respective Board of Examination in Class XII of 10+2 pattern or equivalent and pursuing regular courses (not correspondence or distance mode) in recognised Colleges/Institutions .
CSIR UGC NET JRF fellowship Students registered/enrolled for Ph.D/Integrated Ph.D. programme with 55% marks in the qualifying exams and qualified in the National Eligibility Test.

Future of Physical Sciences

Governments across the world and private sector firms are giving an increasing priority to the research and development in the field of physical sciences. Hence the opportunities in the field are also growing in general. However some areas like particle physics, nanotechnology, astrophysics, and bioanalytical chemistry will grow comparatively faster.

Graduates in physical sciences have different career options in manufacturing companies, labs, R&D organizations and government agencies. Since the field is more or less research oriented, a PhD would be very vital for career growth. And with a PhD, a lot of different options would open up in the academia as well.

Other Career Areas

Life Sciences & Environment

The disciplines of this field like Ecology have considerable overlap with the fields of Physical Sciences like Hydrology, Geology and Soil Sciences. Physical science graduates can take up post graduation studies in Ecology and Environment and enter related careers.

Education and Training

With postgraduate and doctoral qualifications in physical science disciplines, careers in the academic field can be taken up.

Government Services, Civil Services and Defence

Physical science graduates can appear for Civil Service examinations and enter Civil services or take up various government services after appearing for tests conducted by the Public Service Commissions.


Post graduates in certain disciplines of physical sciences can turn to the Engineering field by appearing for the GATE Examination which will make them eligible to pursue MTech.

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