Skip to Navigation Skip to Content

Physics A-level

Key Stage 5

Physics A-level – OCR Physics a

A Levels from 2015 – linear assessment New A Levels will be fully linear so assessment of a student’s knowledge and understanding of the whole course takes place at the end of two years of study. (There’ll be no exams in January.) The first assessment of two-year courses that start in September 2015 will be in June 2017.

All pupils will be able to sit AS exams at the end of year 12 to gain an AS in physics. The syllabus is designed so that pupils planning to continue with physics in year 13 and those planning to sit the AS qualification in year 12 can be taught together during year 12.

The physics syllabus will consist of 6 modules as follows:

  1. Development of practical skills
  2. Foundations of physics, including physical quantities and units, making measurements and analysing data
  3. Forces and motion, including also materials
  4. Electrons, waves and photons, including charge, current, quantum physics
  5. Newtonian world and astrophysics, including thermal physics, circular motion and oscillations
  6. Particles and medical physics, including capacitors, electrical fields, and electromagnetism

Only modules 1-4 are required for AS level.

Assessment strategy for AS physics

Paper 1 – Breadth in physics

  • 1 hour 30 minutes paper
  • 50% of AS mark
  • Section A multiple choice, section B structured answer questions,
  • Covers theory and practical skills

Paper 2 – Depth in physics

  • 1 hour 30 minutes paper
  • 50% of AS mark
  • Structured questions and extend answer questions
  • Covers theory and practical skills

Assessment strategy for A level physics

Paper 1 – Modelling physics

  • 2 hours 15 minutes paper
  • 37% of A level mark
  • Covers modules 1,2,3 and 5
  • 15% multiple choice, rest structured answers
  • Covers theory and practical skills

Paper 2 – Exploring physics

  • 2 hours 15 minutes paper
  • 37% of A level mark
  • Covers modules 1,2,4 and 6
  • 15% multiple choice, rest structured answers
  • Covers theory and practical skills

Paper 3 – Unified physics

  • 1 hour 30 minutes paper
  • 26% of A level mark
  • Covers all modules
  • Structured questions and extended answer questions
  • Covers theory and practical skills

Practical endorsement

  • Pupils complete minimum of 12 practical tasks over 2 years
  • Pass / fail assessed by teacher