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Physics - AS / A level at Kesgrave High School

Course description

A/S Course


1.   Imaging, Optics and Information Collection.
2.   Sensing, Circuit Theory up to the Potential Divider
3.   Signaling, Spectra, Polarization and Digital Signals

Designer Materials

4.   Testing Materials, Mechanical, Optical and Electrical Properties
5.   Looking inside Materials, Properties of Materials in Terms of Structure at
      Various Scales; Designing New Materials

Waves and Quantum Behaviour

6.   Wave Behaviour, Double Slit and Gratings; Colour and Thin Films
7.   Quantum Behaviour, Vectors, Displacement and Velocity

Space and Time

8.   Mapping Space and Time, Vectors, Displacement and Velocity
9.   Computing the Next Move, Uniform Acceleration and Uniform Gravitational

A2 Course

Carefully balancing technological and applied approaches to physics in use, the A2 course deepens understanding of crucial ideas, giving students a wide-ranging and fundamental view of the nature of matter and the Universe. Mathematics in Physics is further developed using modeling software.

Course content

Generally speaking, two teachers share a group and each delivers the material for one unit. All units are examined in the summer term. We try to incorporate as much practical work as we can as it is the application of the theory that makes the difference. We’re constantly progressing towards new ways of thinking with a clear focus on curiosity-driven Physics.

Students will study theory and develop relevant practical skills throughout the course.

A Level physics aims for students to:

  • sustain and develop their enjoyment of, and interest in, physics
  • develop essential knowledge and understanding in physics
  • develop the skills needed for the use of this knowledge and understanding in new and changing situations where appropriate
  • develop an understanding of the link between theory and experiment
  • appreciate how physics has developed and is used in present day society
  • show how physics links with social, philosophical, economic , industrial and environmental matters recognise the quantitative nature of physics
  • understand how mathematical expressions relate to physical principles
  • bring together knowledge of ways in which different areas of physics relate to each other study how scientific models develop.

You study three units in the AS:

Unit 1 - Mechanics and Radioactivity

Unit 2 - Electricity and Thermal Physics

Unit 3 - Topics and Practical Test A Level

The full A Level qualification is made up of the AS units plus three more units

Unit 4 - Waves and Our Universe

Unit 5 - Fields and Forces and Practical Test

Unit 6 - Synoptic Unit

Entry requirements

The qualification builds on the knowledge, understanding and process skills that you will have developed in GCSE Science. Students are expected to have achieved at least a GCSE Grade C in Physics or CC in Science (Double Award) or an equivalent National Curriculum level Intermediate GNVQ.

It will be very helpful to have at least a grade C in GCSE Mathematics as numeracy and mathematical skills are important in Physics.

Communication is also important in Physics so you will need to be able to communicate effectively, be able to research and critically think about problems.


The course is split into 3 units :

  • Unit 1 Exam covers sections 1-5 above.
  • Unit 2 Exam covers sections 6-9 and has a data handling section.
  • Unit 3 is the coursework which involves a short presentation on a material in use and a practical looking at quality of measurement.

Board : OCR (Physics B)

Future opportunities

As a Mathematical Science, Physics is useful in contributing towards specific requirements for university entry from Engineering to Medicine and Architecture.  Many of our students have gained excellent higher level apprenticeship positions after leaving Sixth Form whilst some of their peers have gone on to study Physics at Oxford and Cambridge.  A more versatile qualification would be hard to find.

Remember: Physics is best chosen in conjunction with Maths Mechanics.

Physics leads onto a wide range of courses and careers. You could go onto use Physics to support other qualifications or progress onto further studies or employment.

This could be from a Higher National programme (HNC HND) to degree level; studying courses ranging from Physics, the Sciences, Medicine to Engineering; Chemical Engineering and related programmes; employment in the area of radiography, and biotechnology as possible examples.

In fact, Physics is recognised as an entry qualification for a wide range of Higher Education courses and employment.

Further information

For more information, contact Mrs Wynne.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Kesgrave High School directly.

Last updated date: 20 July 2015
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