Why chose higher physics?
The purpose of the Course is to develop learners’ curiosity, interest and enthusiasm for physics in a range of contexts. The skills of scientific inquiry and investigation are developed throughout the Course. The relevance of physics is highlighted by the study of the applications of physics in everyday contexts. This will enable learners to become scientifically literate citizens, able to review the science-based claims they will meet.
Due to the interdisciplinary nature of science, learners benefit from studying Physics along with other subjects from the sciences, technologies, and mathematics curriculum areas. The Course develops scientific understanding of issues relating to physics. It will enable learners to gain an in-depth knowledge of concepts in physics, and to develop confidence in the skills of scientific inquiry. Learners will develop ability in describing and interpreting physical phenomena using mathematical skills, and will practice scientific methods of investigation from which general relationships are derived and explored.
The Course gives learners a deeper insight into the structure of the subject, and aims to reinforce and extend the learner’s knowledge and understanding of the concepts of physics. It also aims to develop the learner’s skills in making critical and evaluative comment.
Advances in physics mean that our view of what is possible is continually being updated. This Course allows learners to deepen their understanding of the processes behind scientific advances, and thus promotes awareness that physics involves interaction between theory and practice. The Course will therefore enable learners to become scientifically literate citizens who will recognise the impact physics makes on their lives, the environment and society, and be able to appreciate topical scientific debate. Learners will develop skills for learning beyond Higher and for employment.
Our Dynamic Universe.
Topics are: Motion — equations and graphs, Forces, energy and power, Collisions, explosions and impulse, Gravitation, Special relativity, The Expanding Universe.
Particles and Waves.
Topics are: The Standard Model, Forces on charged particles, Nuclear reactions, Wave particle duality, Interference and diffraction, Refraction of light, Spectra
Topics are: Monitoring and measuring a.c., Current, potential difference, power and resistance, Electrical sources and internal resistance, Capacitors, Conductors, semiconductors and insulators, p-n junctions
Course assessment structure.
Component 1 — question paper (scaled from 130 marks) 100 marks
(20 marks multiple choice, 110 marks written, scaled to 80)
Component 2 — assignment 20 marks
(carried out under strictly controlled conditions. Research and Communication task written up in school and marked by SQA)
Total marks 120 marks