Physics GCSE

Oxford Home Schooling Physics GCSE Course

Our old GCSE Physics course prepares students for AQA GCSE Science: Physics syllabus 4451 which was last examined in 2012.   If a home-schooled child now wishes to study Physics, it is necessary instead to take IGCSE Physics. Please refer instead to details of our brand new IGCSE Physics course which does not require coursework or controlled assessment. We have chosen this specification as the most suited to home schooling.

Key Topics Covered

The old GCSE Physics course covered the entire syllabus in 32 lessons split into 3 modules, dealing with the following topics:

Physics 1

  • How is heat (thermal energy) transferred and what factors affect the rate at which heat is transferred?
  • What is meant by the efficient use of energy?
  • Why are electrical devices so useful?
  • How should we generate the electricity we need?
  • What are the uses and hazards of the waves that form the electromagnetic spectrum?
  • What are the uses and dangers of emissions from radioactive substances?
  • What do we know about the universe and how it continues to change?

Physics 2

  • How can we describe the way things move?
  • How do we make things speed up or slow down?
  • What happens to the movement energy when things speed up or slow down?
  • What is momentum?
  • What is static electricity, how can it be used and what is the connection between static electricity and electric currents?
  • What does the current through an electrical circuit depend on?
  • What is mains electricity and how can it be used safely?
  • Why do we need to know the power of electrical appliances?
  • What happens to radioactive substances when they decay?
  • What are nuclear fission and nuclear fusion?

Physics 3

  • How do forces have a turning effect?
  • What keeps bodies moving in a circle?
  • What provides the centripetal force for planets and satellites?
  • What do mirrors and lenses do to light?
  • What is sound?
  • What is ultrasound and how can it be used?
  • How can electricity be used to make things move?
  • How do generators work?
  • How do transformers work?
  • What is the life history of stars?

The GCSE Syllabus

Assessment was by three written paper (75%) and coursework (25%).

Please note that the last normal exam sitting for the GCSE Physics specifications was 2012. If you wish to take Physics exams in 2014 (or later years), you will need to study one of our IGCSE Physics (or Science) courses.

Special Requirements

Some basic mathematical skills are assumed.

Practical Skills/Coursework

The GCSE assessment had two parts:

  1. The practical skills assessment (PSA) assesses the student’s ability to work in an organised and safe manner whilst working practically. It can be carried out at any time during the course.
  2. The investigative skills assignment (ISA) assesses the student’s ability to undertake a task and collect, process and evaluate data. The ISA can be carried out at any time during the course. Students carry out the PSA set by AQA, they then take a written test under controlled conditions. The test asks questions concerning the data collected during the practical task as well as that provided as part of the test.

Please note that the last normal exam sitting for the GCSE Physics specifications was 2012. If you wish to take Physics exams in 2014 (or later years), you will need to study our IGCSE Physics course.

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