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Physics A-Level at Burnham Grammar School

Course description

Advancing Physics aims to give you an understanding of the world around us. We go from the forces which hold atoms together to looking at evidence for how the Big Bang occurred. We look at the latest 3D ultrasound technology and consider the historical context of Newton‟s work. In addition to computational physics we look into areas of quantum thinking that shaped the 20th century. The course is modern and relevant to today, e.g. how digital devices such as CDs, mp3s and digital cameras work, whilst also giving you the grounding in traditional physics needed for further study. 

Rather than memorising mathematical methods, Physics A-level demands that you are able to interpret problems in novel contexts and apply skills accordingly. The level of Mathematics involved is a significant step up from GCSE Physics. The year 12 course has topics on imaging, electricity, materials, waves and quantum behaviour and mechanics. In year 13 the topics are exponential relationships, gravity, the Universe, ideal gases, fields and radioactivity.

Course content

AS Advancing Physics is assessed through two 1.5h exam papers. Practical coursework is no longer directly assessed but experience of practical working is essential to some exam questions. To gain the A-level Physics qualification there are three exams taken at the end of year 13 containing material covered across year 12 and 13.

Entry requirements

You must achieve at least 368 GCSE capped points (i.e. your best 8 subjects) for entry to the Sixth form. You must also achieve a C grade in English Language GCSE and Mathematics GCSE alongside meeting the entry criteria for each individual subject. Option 4 is conditional upon achieving 400+ GCSE capped points. 

GCSE points: A*= 58, A= 52, B= 46, C= 40, D= 34

Subject Specific

ABB in GCSE Biology, Chemistry and Physics, where the A grade is in Physics; or one grade A and one grade B in Core & Additional Science GCSEs. In addition students require a Grade B in GCSE Mathematics. Those who have not followed a triple Science course will be expected to complete extra study and further testing to bring them in line with those with triple Science GCSE.

Future opportunities

Studying Physics at A-level will advance your problem solving abilities. The skills you will develop will be invaluable both directly and indirectly in a wide variety of careers.

Physics is essential for entry into a wide range of scientific careers including astronomy, aeronautics, architecture, communications, electronics, and engineering. It is also a recommended qualification for medicine, veterinary science and for those seeking to work in business and finance.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Burnham Grammar School directly.

Last updated date: 28 April 2015

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