Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Choose semester

Course content

In this course, you learn about the properties of atomic nuclei and basic models that describe these, and about different types of nuclear reactions that are used to study the atomic nucleus. In the course you will also get the hands on "toolbox" you need to analyze experimental data and extract new knowledge about the nucleus. The course provides the basis for master's theses in nuclear physics, or nuclear physics applications in astrophysics, energy and medicine.

Learning outcome

  • you have knowledge of basic properties of atomic nuclei such as mass, binding energy and electromagnetic moments.
  • you master basic models of the atomic nucleus such as liquid drop model, spherical shell model and the Fermigass model, and you can interpret experimental results using these.
  • you have a quantitative understanding of alpha, beta and gamma decay processes and fission, you can decide which processes are possible based on conservation laws, and you can find decay probabilities; and have knowledge of how the lifetime of excited states in the atomic nucleus is measured experimentally.
  • you have knowledge of statistical and thermodynamic properties of the atomic nucleus such as the level density and the gamma strength function, and hands-on experience of extracting these from experimental data using the "Oslo method".
  • you have knowledge of processes for the formation of the elements in the universe, including fusion processes and neutron capture processes (the s and r process), and you have an overview of where in the universe such processes occur.
  • you have knowledge of different reaction mechanisms between nuclei, including Coulomb excitation, compound and direct reactions and fragmentation.


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Recommended previous knowledge


The course runs over a whole semester with 4 hours of teaching each week. The teaching cosists of lecures and hands on work.

There will be a hands on part where the students themselves will analyze experimental data.

There will be a compulsory assignment (either a written submission or a seminar lecture) midway through the semester that must be approved to take the final examination.


There will be a compulsory assignment (either a written submission or a seminar lecture) midway through the semester that must be approved to take the final examination.

The final oral exam counts 100% of the final grade.

Examination support material

No examination support material is allowed.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.

Facts about this course






Every autumn


Every autumn

Teaching language

Norwegian (English on request)