Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the Universe exist. Be curious. And however difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don’t just give up.
Key Stage 3
At Key Stage 3, Physics is part of an integrated junior science programme which covers the CCEA Revised Curriculum. In Years 8 and 9 it is studied along with the other two science subjects, and all pupils in Year 10 are taught Physics as a separate science by a specialist teacher.
The Physics curriculum at KS3 provides pupils with a broad and balanced knowledge base covering the key areas of Forces, Electricity & Magnetism, Space, Energy and Light & Sound – a solid foundation for the GCSE courses. All pupils develop a range of practical skills that encourage them to work safely with scientific equipment and measuring instruments, preparing them for a modern technological society. They develop investigative skills to solve scientific problems and make informed decisions. The study of Physics and Science provides opportunities for pupils to research and manage information, work effectively with others and use cross curricular skills. Pupils will find themselves engaging in lessons involving active learning, peer assessment and developing their communication skills.
Pupils have the opportunity to follow the CCEA course in separate GCSE Physics or in combined Double Award Science. Each provides a broad, coherent and practical course that enables pupils to develop a positive view of and confidence in Physics. These courses are designed so that students can gain a broad knowledge and understanding of Physics, can gain scientific, investigative and problem-solving skills, can develop a critical approach to scientific evidence and methods and can acquire and apply skills, knowledge and understanding of how science works and its essential role in society. The CCEA specifications offer students the opportunity to be inspired, motivated and challenged by a broad, practical and worthwhile course of study. We encourage them to develop their curiosity about the physical and engineering worlds and provide insight into and experience of how science works. These courses adequately prepare students for the study of Physics at GCE Level, and allow pupils to develop transferable skills that will benefit them in any chosen career path.
The department follows the CCEA GCE Physics specification at A Level. You will develop your practical skills and your collaborative and teamwork skills, your communication and your problem-solving skills, all of which are transferable to careers in related areas. You will also gain and develop valuable mathematical and research capabilities. This qualification is best suited to students who aspire to University level education, it is academically a very rigorous course and high levels of effort and comprehension are required in order to achieve a pass grade in GCE Physics. Students must have achieved at least a high B grade in GCSE Physics, or a BB in Double Award Science (where your results will be checked to ensure you achieved a high B at least in the Physics element). It is preferable to have studied Further Mathematics, although a good A grade or better in Mathematics may suffice. The areas of study are outlined below – the AS qualification is weighted at 40% of the overall A-level, and all elements are externally assessed (there is no coursework element).
The study of Physics complements a range of other subjects including Maths and other sciences, Engineering and Digital Technology.
Pupils can avail of after school science club at KS3 level. There are opportunities for educational visits (to CERN for example) when these can be arranged.
Where to next?
There has never been a more exciting time to study Physics, and an A-level in this subject opens doors to many diverse career options; in medicine, manufacturing, research, nursing, dentistry, technology, forensic science, astrophysics, actuarial studies, computer programming and others. Research shows that Physics graduates can expect to earn more on average than graduates of most other subject areas. If you are interested in the world