A Level Physics

A Level Physics at Truro School Sixth Form

We are committed to bringing Physics alive through practical work, lectures and a trip to the Medical Physics Department of the Royal Cornwall Hospital.

Head of Department: Mr Adam Laity

Likes: Cornwall, rugby, walking our dog, sailing, wine on a Friday night, Falmouth, holidays, pottering in the garden or garage but not really doing much.

Dislikes: Liver and kidney, January.

Background: Went to Falmouth School then went on to study Physics at Southampton University before working at Truro School.

Physics is the knowledge of nature. We try to understand the workings of the smallest sub-atomic particles with study of Quantum Physics in the Lower Sixth, to the furthest quasar during the Cosmology unit in the Upper Sixth. We study matter, motion through space and time, energy and forces in order to try and explain how the universe behaves. The Physics course not only provides excellent preparation for further study in the Sciences and Engineering, but also in a host of other disciplines where analytical and problem solving skills are required.

Why study A Level Physics?

Physicists need a wide range of talents including numeracy, literacy and problem solving skills. Our Physics course develops your GCSE experience and requires you to use language precisely and accurately.

The A Level course extends to more esoteric aspects of modern Physics including Nuclear Physics, Cosmology and Quantum Theory. By studying the latter, you can test out the famous quote from the Nobel Prize-winning Physicist, Niels Bohr – “Anyone who is not shocked by quantum theory has not understood it.”

What does an A Level in Physics involve?

In the Lower Sixth you cover such topics as motion, forces, work and energy in the first unit and then go on to look at electric current, resistance, DC circuits, waves and Quantum Physics in the second. You continue to develop your skills, knowledge and understanding of the physical world.

In the Upper Sixth you study Newton’s Laws in greater detail, looking at circular motion, oscillations and thermal Physics. You then look at laws developed by such people as Coulomb and Faraday in the study of electric and magnetic fields. You study ideas about the basic structure of the atom leading to an explanation of radioactivity, nuclear fission and fusion.

Finally, you investigate the applications of Physics in medical imaging and consider the nature of the origins of the universe and its possible future.

3 Reasons to Study A Level Physics at Truro School

  • Experience A Level teachers who provide support, inspiration and enthusiasm so that each student can develop their understanding of how the universe works to the best of their ability.
  • We have a track record of sending students to the top universities to study Physics, with our staff including exam board examiners who are able to give an insight into how to succeed in exams.
  • We have excellent resources and enrichment activities that produces an atmosphere that will stretch and interest each and every individual.

What is an A Level in Physics useful for?

To read Physics to degree level, A Level Mathematics is essential. To read Engineering and Physics degrees at the best institutions in the country, studying Further Mathematics enhances your chances of being successful. For Natural Sciences at university, it is possible to study a combination of A Level Sciences (including Geology) with or without Mathematics.

Physics A Level and degree courses not only provide you with excellent career opportunities in the Sciences, Engineering, Computing industry and Geology, but also in a host of other disciplines where analytical and problem solving skills are required such as Management, Law, Banking and Finance. Salary statistics show that degrees in Physics have one of the biggest effects in increasing your earning power.