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Physics is the science that is of immediate relevance to everyday life, allowing you to make sense of many environmental and technological issues, whilst at the same time addressing momentous questions concerning the existence and properties of the Universe; not quite the answer to everything – but almost.

OCR B, Advancing Physics

PhsycisMuch of the appeal of physics lies in the beauty of its logic. In addition it involves creativity since originality and imagination are vital for developing novel solutions to problems, theoretical explanations and experimental approaches.

A Level Physics is a curiosity led course, with particular emphasis on recent advances in the subject, stimulating contexts, relevant IT applications, and the provision of opportunities for you to make your own choice of examples to study in detail.

Components

  • Module 1 – Practical skills
  • Module 2 – Data analysis
  • Module 3 – Digital imaging and signalling; sensing (electricity); mechanical properties of materials
  • Module 4 – Waves and quantum behaviour; space, time and motion
  • Module 5 – Creating models; out into space; our place in the universe; matter - very simple; matter - hot and cold
  • Module 6 – Electromagnetism; charge and field; probing deep into matter; ionising radiation and risk

Mathematical skills

Exam questions require multi-step answers and choice of approach to follow. You do not need to study AS or A Level Mathematics in order to take physics but you do need to feel comfortable with a quantitative approach.

Outside the classroom

Each year several of our students have been involved in the Engineering Education Scheme and we have enjoyed successful participation in the British Physics Olympiad. We have many visiting speakers, such as from the Large Hadron Collider, and we have strong links with The Cavendish Laboratory at the University of Cambridge.

Assessment 
Two 2h 15 minute papers worth 100 & 110 marks; one 1h 30 minute paper worth 60 marks. The papers may all assess content from all the A Level topics.

Fundamentals of Physics: multiple choice questions; structured questions including calculations, problem-solving, questions on practical work; extended response questions.

Scientific Literacy in Physics: structured questions including calculations, problem-solving, questions on practical work; extended response questions. About a quarter of the questions will be based on an Advance Notice Article.

Practical Skills in Physics: structured questions including calculations, problem-solving and extended response questions with a particular emphasis on practical work; longer structured question focusing on data analysis.

Practical endorsement

Performance in this component will be reported separately to your performance in the A Level as measured through the exam papers. It will be reported as either a pass or ungraded.