Physics AS Level and A Level

Science and Mathematics

Science and Mathematics
Science and Mathematics
We are only accepting one application per candidate.

What will you be working towards?

Code TPT21
Qualification Type GCE A/AS Level or Equivalent
Qualification Level Level 3
Course type Full Time


Physics is a practical subject and the development and acquisition of practical skills is fundamental.  The OCR Physics A course provides learners with the opportunity to develop experimental methods and techniques for analysing empirical data including the key scientific skills of planning, implementing, analysing and evaluating.  The course introduces the important conventions and ideas that permeate the fabric of physics.  The understanding of physical quantities, S.I. units, scalars and vectors helps physicists to effectively  communicate their ideas within the scienctific community.

Students will learn how to model the motion of objects using mathematics, understand the effect forces have on objects, learn  about the important connection between force and energy, appreciate how forces cause deformation and understand the importance of Newtons laws of motion.  Students are also introduced to the key ideas of quantum physics .  Electromagnetic waves (e.g. light) have a dual nature.  They exhibit both wave and particle -like behaviour.  The wave-particle dual nature is also found to be characterisitc of all particles (e.g. electrons).  Before any sophisticated work can be done on quantum physics, leaners need to appreciate  what electrons are and how they behave  in electrical circuits.  A basic understanding of wave properties is also developed.

In the final year of the course (A Level) students are shown the impact Newtonian mechanics has on physics.  The microscoptic motion of atoms can be modelled using Newton's laws and hence provide us with an understanding of macroscopic quantities such as pressure and temperature.  Newton's law of gravitation can be used to rpedict the motion of planets and distant galaxies.  And we explore the inticacies  of stars and the expansion of the Universe by analysing the electromagnetic radiation  from space.  As such, it lends itself to the consideration of how the development of the scientific model is improved based on the advances in the means of observation.  Other topics covered include capacitors, electric field, electromagnetism, nuclear physics, particle physics and medical imaging.


Content is split into six teaching modules:

  • Module 1 - Development of practical skills in Physics; including 'Practical skills assessed in a written examination' and 'Practical skills assessed in the practical endorsement'
  • Module 2 - Foundations of physics; including 'Physical quantities and units', 'Making measurements and analysing data' and 'Nature of Quantities'
  • Module 3 - Forces and motion; including 'Motion', 'Forces in action', 'Work, energy and power', 'Materials' and 'Newton's laws of motion and momentum'
  • Module 4 - Electrons, waves, and photons; including 'Charge and current', 'Energy, power and resistance', 'Electrical circuits', 'Waves' and 'Quantum physics'
  • Module 5 - Newtonian world and astrophysics; including 'Thermal physics', 'Circular motion', 'Oscillations', 'Gravitational fields' and 'Astrophysics and cosmology'
  • Module 6 - Particles and medical physics; including 'Capacitors' 'Electric fields', 'Electromagnetism', 'Nuclear and particle physics' and 'Medical imaging'

Paper 1 assesses content from modules 1, 2, 3 and 5

Paper 2 assesses content from modules 1, 2, 4 and 6

Paper 3 assesses content from all modules (1 to 6)


How will it be delivered?

AS Level:

Paper 1 Breadth in physics 1.5 hours

Multiple chocie and structured questions.

Paper 2 Depth in physics 1.5 hours

Structured and extended response questions

A Level:

Paper 1 Modelling Physics 2 hour 15 mins

Multiple choice and structured questions

Paper 2 Exploring Physics 2 hour 15 mins

multiple choice and structured questions

Paper 3 Unified physics 2 hour 15 mins

Structured and extended response questions

Practical endorsement for physics

Teacher-assessed practical competence

Entry requirements

6 in Physics and 6 in another science or 6 and 6 in Combined Science and a 6 in Maths. 

Your next steps...

Physics 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.  Physicists are problem solvers.  Their analytical skills make physicists versatile and adaptable so they work in interesting places.  Students that complete physics at A level have a wealth of career opportunities open to them  as the skills they possess are sought after by employers.  Many believe that studying physics will only lead to careers in physics and engineering.  The fact is, more physics students end up working in the finance or computer science sectors.  Physics courses develop such employable skills that no matter what a career a student wishes to head towards, employers often seek to employ those that have proved themselves by taking physics above others.