A Short Explanation: What is Materials Science?

Unlike all my friends who are going for Natural Sciences or Engineering or something generically sciency at university, I am applying to study Materials Science (and Engineering).

Nobody has a clue what it is.

Here’s the answer to the most common question I get asked from my friends.


What is Materials Science?

Basically, it’s the study of materials and their properties – why materials have their properties and how you can manipulate them.

Think of any material that you might use. It’s been specifically chosen for that purpose: either because its properties are perfect for that use (like titanium, which is strong but not dense, for jet engines) or because it’s kinda the right stuff but it’s cheap (like plastic for toys).

Materials science optimises the properties of materials for their use and also improves the manufacturing methods to make their production cheaper.

What Do You Study in Materials Science?

This depends on the course and the university – usually, the course is split into the different types of materials (metallurgy, polymers, biomaterials, nanomaterials, composites etc.)

It’s quite common to go into a lecture in the morning on quantum physics and then one in the afternoon on hip replacements!

The variety is what attracted me to this subject – I’m genuinely really excited!

What will you study/have you studied at university/college? How did you find it? How’s your application process going? Let me know in the comments!


15 thoughts on “A Short Explanation: What is Materials Science?

  1. One of my Y13s is going for physics and engineering, she’s hoping to get sponsored by Jaguar. I think she feels a bit apart from her peers, but I’ve been very enthusiastic when talking to her. Her personal statement was good. So, best wishes to her (and you).

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Glad you found a subject that interests you! It’s very diverse and we’ll always need Materials Science because we’ll always be creating new things or improving others!! Exciting, I’ve been wanting to blog about linguistics (my chosen major) and why I love words, so hopefully this gives me incentive to do so!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve never heard of this but it’s so interesting! I can definitely see the appeal of such a unique field(: I just took a class on microbiology (suuuuuper tiny living things) and it was also very interesting!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: 30 Questions to Ask University Students to Figure Out if a University or Course is for You | Daring To Jess

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