St. Mary's

Physics

Is this course for me?

Physics is a subject without limits – everything in your life, on this planet, other planets, to the far reaches of the universe and beyond is in physics. Physics deals with the big questions: Is there order in the chaos of the universe? Are there parallel universes? Will we ever travel back in time? What holds matter together? What is dark matter? Is there a single model that explains everything from atoms to universes? Physics is more than a subject – it trains your brain to think beyond boundaries.

Entry to this course requires a minimum grade 6 at GCSE in both Maths and Science.

Areas of Study

At St Mary’s students follow the AQA A level Physics course. Assessment of the course is 100% examination with no coursework component. However practical skills are a key component of the course. There are 12 required practical activities that have to be completed over 2 years. Successful completion of this leads to the award of the Practical Endorsement. In addition practical skills are tested in the examsAt St Mary’s students follow the AQA A level Physics course. Assessment of the course is 100% examination with no coursework component. However practical skills are a key component of the course. There are 12 required practical activities that have to be completed over 2 years. Successful completion of this leads to the award of the Practical Endorsement. In addition practical skills are tested in the exams.

A level Physics has three examination papers that cover the following topics:

  • Measurement and uncertainty in Physics.
  • The characterisation of wave behaviour.
  • Introduction to the quantum world.
  • Forces, energy and motion.
  • Materials and their properties.
  • The physics of electricity.
  • The use of fields to explain the basic forces acting around us.
  • The physics of the nucleus.
  • The use of models to predict behaviour of systems as varied as planetary motion to how atomic behaviour in gasses drove the industrial revolution.
  • The turning points of Physics – how the challenges of new ideas and thinking in physics have generated new directions and amazing predictions – from quantum physics to relativistic effects.

Future Opportunities

Physicists find employment in careers as diverse as lawyers to astronauts, web designers to architects, engineers to pilots. Physics is a highly sought after qualification and can be a passport to many different careers and challenges. Are you up to the challenge of continuing your interest in Physics and the rewards your hard work can provide?

Exam Board: AQA