Level 3

Qualification: A Level

Duration: 2 years

What will I study?

In the first year the course will include quantum and nuclear physics in addition to all the core topics of mechanics (including oscillations), electricity and circuits, waves and properties of matter (materials). As well as learning theory, you will complete a number of experiments including 7 assessed practicals. The maths required is higher level GCSE (algebra and trigonometry are important) but you are expected to apply it in more practical situations.

In the second year the topic of electricity is extended to cover ac, oscilloscopes and capacitors. Thermal physics, radioactivity and extensive work on gravitational, electric and magnetic fields, including electromagnetic induction, will also form a substantial part of the course. You will choose one option from Astrophysics, Medical Physics, Engineering Physics and Turning Points in Physics that you study independently towards the end of the second year. You will continue to carry out experimental work and complete a further 5 assessed practicals. The course brings in some higher level mathematics (exponential functions, logarithms and graph work) but this is covered during the course.

The practical activities carried out throughout the course will contribute towards the Practical Endorsement. The skills, knowledge and understanding learned through both the practical and theoretical work will be assessed by three 2hour exams at the end of the 2 year course.

Study Visits

The Science Museum


Less than £25.


Written examinations. Practical endorsement.

Entry Criteria

Minimum average GCSE score required 5. GCSE Science 6,6 (with a 6 in Physics if taken as a separate GCSE). Grade 6 Maths.

Useful Supporting Courses

Valuable support for Mathematics and for other sciences and Computing.


Aerospace engineer, architect, airline pilot, clinical engineer, metallurgist, nuclear engineer, radiation protection practitioner, nanotechnologist, nuclear engineer, physicist.

Culture Vulture

Check out our Culture Vulture link to see what takes your interest.

Physics Culture Vulture

Flying start

Click the link and have a go at our 10-week learning plan to get you off to the best start.

Physics Flying Start

Course Overview

Follow the link to see an introduction to the course, identifying what you will study with us in the first few months and what you might already know.

Physics Course Overview