48 months
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The Physics program of the Nazarbayev University is designed to provide advanced skills and knowledge base at an expert level for individuals planning a career in academia, industry and research settings in Kazakhstan and abroad. 

Visit the official programme website for more information


The program focuses on the enhancement of knowledge by advanced courses and development of research skills at a high level. 

The Physics program of the Nazarbayev University especially focuses on priority areas for Kazakhstan, serving as a foundation for future high-tech industries and knowledge-based economy. By the completion of the PhD program, students will be capable of designing and conducting independent, innovative, original and high quality research on a variety of topics in Physics as well as interdisciplinary topics. In addition, program graduates will be prepared for working in industrial and academic environments including positions of university faculty members, senior researchers, high-tech entrepreneurs, engineers, product developers and science & technology policy makers

The program consists of comprehensive course work and research activity. The courses are designed to enable students to acquire highly advanced and cutting-edge knowledge in Physics. After passing a comprehensive exam and PhD proposal defense, students are required to develop and practice novel research within the area of Physics or an interdisciplinary field related to Physics. Research components of the program and dissertation defense will be passed by each student to complete the program and graduate

Career and Internship Support

Students will benefit from a number of contacts with the international scientific community as well as industry. Strong scientific ties have already been established with other outside bodies engaged in research. All students have the opportunity to take part in a 6 to 12 month internship at an international host research institution. The host supervisor and supervisory team at NU will maintain communication with the student throughout the student’s stay in order to make an efficient use of the host premises and facilities for the benefit of the PhD student

Programme Structure

  • The PhD program will typically be conducted over 48 months full time. Each student will develop their personal and professional skills and their PhD program as part of the core curriculum courses. 
  • The program includes the possibility of taught courses (during the first year) to support the development of postgraduate research students, to extend and test their knowledge in their research discipline. 
  • Each student will be required to formally pass a comprehensive exam at the second year and defend their PhD proposal at the end of the third semester. 
  • The program will then progress into a period dedicated to their research topic, from which a demonstrable original contribution to the knowledge pool will be assessed. Continuation into a 5th year is possible upon approval and may come with specific requisites and stipulations. 

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 48 months

Start dates & application deadlines


240 ECTS


On Campus

Academic requirements

GPA admission requirements GPA
GRE admission requirements GRE®

Other requirements

General requirements

  • an undergraduate degree (Bachelor’s degree or equivalent) and master’s degree (or equivalent) in a relevant discipline, to be determined by the Admissions Committee (Admission Committee is in charge to decide what discipline is relevant or not). 
  • a minimum CGPA of 2.75 out of 4.00 in their highest degree;
  • two confidential letters of recommendation in English (or with notarized English translation). 
  • a statement of purpose not exceeding 1000 words, explaining the motivation to enroll on the Ph.D program in Physics, and the tentative choice of the research subject;
  • valid GRE Test Report (general test). An applicant must indicate University as a recipient when registering for the test. 
  • the relevance of the academic and experiential background, and the equivalency and appropriateness of earlier degrees, will be determined by the Admissions Committee.

Living costs for Nur-Sultan

151250 - 222349 KZT /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

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