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Studying Physics at Bloxham School

Our priority in Physics is for pupils to have the time to engage fully with practical work and hands-on science.

Physics in the Lower School

In Lower School, students follow a course which aims to give the breadth of background knowledge and practical experience required before beginning the GCSE course in Third Form. The main aim is to provide a rigorous, enjoyable and interactive introduction to secondary science in order to maintain enthusiasm and curiosity into the teenage years and beyond. We aim to develop young people with the skills and knowledge that will help them to ask and answer scientific questions. To this end, a variety of learning activities, with an emphasis on practical work, are employed.

Physics in the Third Form upwards

We begin the AQA GCSE course in Third Form, giving us three years instead of the usual two to give more time on topics of interest. All pupils follow the same syllabus throughout Third and Fourth Form. Only after mock exams in Fifth Form do we make a decision for each individual pupil to pursue either separate sciences (to gain three GCSE grades in physics, chemistry and biology) or to focus on slightly less course material to maximise their achievement in Double Award Science (where two GCSE grades are awarded as an average of their performance in all three sciences). This decision is left as late as possible to allow us time to make the best judgement for each individual pupil.

Physics in the Sixth Form

We also follow the AQA A-level physics course at Bloxham. This course was chosen to follow on smoothly from the GCSE course and makes physics relevant to the real world and interesting to learn. Again, it focuses on practical work to link theory to reality while developing the practical skills that students will need for further study of the subject. The course is well-suited to those pupils with an A grade or above in GCSE physics or Double Award Science (grade 7 or above for the new GCSE). Similar attainment in GCSE mathematics is also expected. Although the course is designed so that it can be taken without A-level mathematics, successful students will be capable of further study of mathematics and studying mathematics to A-level allows pupils to appreciate where the physics comes from in much more depth and equips them for further study at university. A-level physics teaches methodical thinking and is advantageous for those looking to study a variety of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects at university.