'The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible' - Albert Einstein

Exam board: Edexcel

Who is it for?

Are you interested in the BIG questions of science? How are black holes formed? Why do massive objects curve space-time? What is the optimum length for a bungee rope? How did the universe begin and how will it end? How do they put bubbles into an Aero? If so, PHYSICS is the subject for you! This is a course which is very practically based and which we are very excited about. Why not take a look and see what we find so interesting!

Entry Requirements

In addition to the general entrance requirements, the department’s standard minimum requirements are:

  • If taking Combined Science : Grade 5/5 or above in HIGHER TIER
  • If taking separate sciences : Grade 5 or above in 2 x HIGHER TIER science subjects, one of which needs to be in physics
  • Grade 5 in maths, HIGHER TIER paper
  • Satisfactory completion of the summer induction assignment

Course content

Edexcel advanced physics is a context-led course placing your learning in the environment and in situations in which physics is met in real life.

  • Mechanics
  • Further mechanics
  • Electric Circuits
  • Materials
  • Waves and the Particle Nature of Light
  • Electric and magnetic fields
  • Nuclear and particle physics
  • Thermodynamics
  • Space
  • Gravitational Fields
  • Oscillations

Usually, you will be taught in groups of about 15 - 20 students. You will have two teachers throughout the course.

There is also some assessment of practical work throughout the year where students will be able to demonstrate their competency in manipulating equipment, taking and recording results accurately and interpretation of results. This will be reported separately to the student’s final grade.

Weekly commitment

As well as your lesson time, you will be expected to work for about five hours per week at home.

Additional Costs

Students are encouraged to buy revision guides which will cost a few pounds.

Assessment – all three papers have some synoptic elements

Paper 1 – Advanced Physics I - 1hr 45mins

30% of the A level qualification

 Topics Assessed
Electric Circuits
Further Mechanics
Electric and Magnetic Fields
Nuclear and Particle Physics

Paper 2 – Advanced Physics II - 1hr 45mins

30% of the A level qualification

 Topics Assessed
Waves and Particle Nature of Light
Nuclear Radiation
Gravitational Fields

Paper 3 – General and Practical Principles in Physics -  2hr 30mins

40% of the A level qualification

 Topics Assessed
Practical techniques and analysis  

Studying physics will not only allow you to discover many new concepts, but also greatly increase your ability to problem-solve and view a situation from a number of angles. Students find physics rewarding and academically stimulating. Most students, whatever their ability, have achieved their full potential, or bettered our expectations!

Physics is often taken at advanced level because it is an entry requirement for many scientific and technical degree courses. However, some students have chosen to study the subject for what it offers in terms of its interest and the wide recognition an advanced physics qualification deservedly attracts. Sharnbrook physics students have gone on to study degrees in many diverse areas such as journalism, sports science, furniture design, law, linguistics, as well as the more obvious physics and engineering options

For further information, contact:

Miss N Chowdhary, Head of Physics


May 2019