Physics - A Level
Physics is crucial to understanding the world around us, the world inside us, and the world beyond us. It encompasses the study of the universe from the largest galaxies to the smallest subatomic particles and is the most basic and fundamental science. Physics challenges our imaginations with concepts like relativity and string theory, and it leads to great discoveries, like computers and lasers, that lead to technologies which change our lives—from healing joints, to curing cancer, to developing sustainable energy solutions.
The course aims to develop essential knowledge and developing enquiry based learning. It is not necessary for students to study A-level Maths in order to be successful at A-level Physics, but students must be confident mathematicians. A-level Mathematics strongly supports A-level Physics and students intending to study Physics or Engineering at university must also take mathematics A-level.
- Skills in physics
- Particles and radiation
- Waves and optics
- Mechanics and materials
- Further mechanics and thermal physics
- Nuclear physics
- Plus one option module, usually astrophysics
Practical work runs throughout the course; minimum 12 required practicals.
On consultation it is possible to study a 1 year AS-level in Physics, completing topics 1-5 only.
Exam Board: AQA
This is a linear A-level with all exams taken at the end of Year 13
Paper 1: Topics 1-5, periodic motion, relevant practical skills (34%, 2 hours)
Paper 2: Topics 6–8, including relevant practical skills (34%, 2 hours)
Paper 1 and 2 include a 25 mark multiple choice section
Paper 3 Section A: Practical data analysis , drawn from whole course
Paper 3 Section B: Option (Total for paper 3 = 32%, 2 hours)
Students will be examined internally at the end of Year 12
All exams taken at the end of y12
Paper 1: Topics 1-5, relevant practical skills (50%, 1.5hours)
Paper 2 Section A: practical skills and data analysis
Paper 2 Section B: Topics 1-5
Section C: 30 multiple choice questions
Total paper 2: 50%, 1.5hours
Pass/Fail Practical endorsement for Physics – this is continuous throughout Y12 and Y13 and is teacher assessed.
Head of Subject: Dr S Cockbill
Grade 7 in Physics or a 6 in Physics with at least one other science at a 6. In addition, minimum grade 6 in Maths.
Are you interested in: Developing Physics through an experimental approach; developing imaginative and critical thought; interested in understanding physics, how it has developed and is used in society; applying Physical principles to personal, social, environmental and economic issues?
Leading to a career in: Physics, Quantum Mechanics, Nuclear science, Aeronautics, Astronomy, Cosmology,
Biomedical Sciences, Forensics, Research, Engineering, Software Development, Accountancy, Investment Banking, Chemistry, Oceanography, Seismology.
This subject goes well with: Chemistry, Biology, Maths, Psychology, Geography, Business, Music, IT.
Learning about the rules and laws which govern our universe is extremely interesting.” Jacob, Y13