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Science - Physics

 

DEPARTMENT

COURSE NAME

COURSE LEADER

EXAM BOARD

QUALIFICATION

Science Physics Ms Purnell AQA A level

Course Entry Requirements

The minimum entrance requirement is a grade 7- 7 in GCSE Combined Science.  For those students who have studied the separate Biology, Chemistry and Physics GCSEs, they must achieve a minimum of grade 7 in Physics and grade 6 in the other two science subjects.  Students also need a grade 6 in English Language and a grade 6 in Maths. Equally important is an interest in and enjoyment of both the theoretical and practical aspects of the subject. 

You will need an open mind and plenty of imagination to cope with the concepts you will encounter.  You should also have an interest in how things work and curiosity about why things behave as they do.

Course Content

Experimental work forms an integral part of the course with 12 compulsory experiments as well as multiple optional ones.  This reinforces the theoretical work and provides training in practical skills, as well as experimental procedures.  The ability to express ideas in simple mathematical terms and understand the physical significance of equations will be developed during the course.

The linear nature of the A level means that students sit all the exams at the end of year 13.

Topics covered:-

Core 1 Measurements and their errors;

Core 5 Electricity;

Core 2 Particles and radiation;

Core 6 Further mechanics and thermal physics;

Core 3 Waves;

Core 7 Fields and their consequences;

Core 4 Mechanics and materials;

Core 8 Nuclear physics.

Options:

Astrophysics; Medical physics; Engineering physics; Turning points in physics; Electronics.

Assessment and Examinations

A level

Paper 1: Sections 1 to 5 and 6.1 (Periodic motion)

Written exam: 2 hours                               

34% of A level

Paper 2: Sections 6.2 (Thermal Physics), 7 and 8.  Assumed knowledge from sections 1 to 6.1.

Written exam: 2 hours

34% of A level

Paper 3: Section A Compulsory section: Practical skills and data analysis.  Section B Students enter for 1 of the option sections.

Written exam: 2 hours

32% of A level

12 Practicals which will be used to assess practical skills. 

This pass grade is separate to the A level grade.

Progression and Careers

A level Physics is very demanding, but the qualifications are correspondingly valuable.  For those who intend to go on to Higher Education, degree courses in the Physical Sciences, Medicine, Engineering, Mathematics as well as most Technological and Applied Science courses, usually require Physics qualifications.

Those who decide to seek employment at 18+ could find openings in telecommunications, scientific civil service, ‘service’ industries, medical physics, research, education, environmental physics etc.  Some find their qualification in Physics valuable in areas not so connected with science.

Exam Board

AQA.   http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/as-and-a-level/physics-7407-7408

Contact Name

For further information, please see Ms Purnell – Teacher in Charge of Physics.