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Physics A Level at Salisbury 6th Form College

Course description

Physics encompasses the study of the universe from the largest galaxies to the smallest subatomic particles. It is crucial to understanding the world around us, the world inside us, and the world beyond us. It is the most basic and fundamental science.

Physics challenges our imaginations and leads to great discoveries, like computers and lasers, which lead to technologies which change our lives—from healing joints, to curing cancer, to developing sustainable energy solutions. It is only in Physics that you will find yourself thinking about everything from how the universe started to how a bridge stays up.

If you’re curious about the world and how it works, there’s nothing better than Physics. It’s the job of Physics to make sense of how things move, change and influence each other.

All Science at S6C uses new state-of-the-art teaching laboratories and equipment.

Trips and visits opportunities

Rutherford Appleton Laboratories and either Kennedy Space Centre or CERN

Course content

The course starts by exploring the Particle Zoo – the strange particles that can appear and disappear in an instant but make up the atoms of every substance there is. We then move to Quantum Physics, studying the interactions of electrons with particles of light. Then we study how electrons help power everything in the modern world by carrying energy from place to place for us.

The second major section of the course involves challenging and developing more of what you learned at GCSE; you were probably told that light travels in straight lines, but we will find that this is not always true. We will explore more about the forces that make things move and the motion & shape-changing that result.

The second year of the course starts with the topics of gravitation and electric & magnetic fields; what are they and how they can be modelled and measured. More advanced mechanics appears here too, such as Momentum & impulse and whether your car will take off over a certain radius of bridge.

The course draws toward a close with advanced work on the nature of Radioactivity and how the nucleus is constructed, and final topic of the course is chosen from five options: astrophysics & cosmology; medical physics; physics of engines; wave-particle duality & special relativity; digital & analogue electronics.

Entry requirements

To study this course you will need grade B or above in GCSE Physics. If you have not studied separate sciences, Science Core and Additional need to have a minimum of a grade B (where exam scores are a B Grade).

GCSE Maths must be at grade 6 or above and GCSE English Language must be at grade 5 or above.

Future opportunities

A Level Physics can lead to careers in:

  • Buildings & Structures
  • Education
  • Energy & Power
  • Environment & Climate
  • Law & Finance
  • Medicine
  • Research
  • Sound & Lighting for TV & film
  • Space
  • Sport
  • Transport & logistic
  • and many others – there is hardly anything that is closed to you, and the skills from A Level Physics are highly valued in all disciplines.

Further information

What our students think

“You get to understand, not just know; you learn the reasons behind a lot of content you were just told at GCSE.”

Sam, previously St Joseph’s School

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 12 September 2016
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Key information


  • More information
    • S6C will have a brand new purpose built College on Tollgate Road ready for September 2015. For September 2014 we are located in Wiltshire College in a dedicated area which has been refurbished specifically for our students.