The Physics curriculum at KGS is designed to enthuse and inspire pupils, whilst equipping them with the key skills required for their future studies. Experimental work is at the heart of the subject, which engages learners and encourages a logical approach to analysis of results and application of understanding.
The Lower School curriculum is based on the National Curriculum Key Stage 3 with particular emphasis on preparing pupils for the GCSE course. Physics is taught as a separate subject to all pupils, with pupils in the First and Second Years receiving two Physics lessons per fortnight, and those in the Third Year receiving three.
The programme of study covers the following topics:
- Forces and Motion
GCSE Physics (8463)
Combined Science: Trilogy (8464)
Physics continues to be taught as a separate subject, with all pupils receiving four lessons per fortnight. External examinations are taken at the end of the Fifth Year.
The topics studied include: Energy, Electricity, Radioactivity, Forces and Motion, Waves, and Electromagnetism.
Pupils in the higher science sets are entered for Physics, Chemistry and Biology at GCSE, while pupils in the lower sets are entered for Combined Science: Trilogy (which is worth two GCSE awards).
There is no coursework assessment at GCSE – instead there are a series of 'required practicals' that pupils complete as part of their course. Practical skills are assessed in the written examinations.
A Level Physics
In the Lower Sixth, the Year 1 course content includes the study of Measurements and their Errors, Particles and Radiation, Waves, Mechanics and Electricity. The Year 2 course content includes the study of Further Mechanics, Thermal Physics, Fields, Nuclear Physics and Special Relativity. Some pupils may opt to study Astrophysics, Medical Physics, Electronics or Engineering.
The study of Physics seeks to answer fundamental questions about the nature of the universe: how it began, how it will end, and the central role played by energy in all its varied forms.
Sixth Form pupils intending to study A Level Physics should have a good grade in GCSE Physics or in Combined Science. There should be ability in Mathematics but it is not absolutely necessary to study A Level Mathematics in order to be successful in A Level Physics. Nevertheless, pupils who do study A Level Mathematics will find that they are at a significant advantage due to the overlap of the two subjects.
The AQA course will be followed.
Year 1 consists of the study of: Measurements and their Errors, Particles and Radiation, Waves, Mechanics and Electricity.
Year 2 consists of the study of: Further Mechanics, Thermal Physics, Fields, Nuclear Physics and Special Relativity. Some pupils will be able to substitute the study of Astrophysics, Medical Physics, Engineering or Electronics for the study of Special Relativity. Practical skills will be assessed by a written examination that forms 18% of the overall assessment. In addition, the practical work of pupils will be monitored by their teacher and if successful, they will receive a practical endorsement which will be recorded on their examination certificate alongside their final grade.
The options available to Physics students are endless. A few examples of possible career paths include:
Business and Finance