Those who have chosen physics will already know and be appreciating the importance of physics within our 21st century world. The courses provide knowledge and skills which will help those who study it to enjoy and understand modern life and play a full part in it.

In line with CfE qualifications, the S3 Physics course is now delivered at CfE Level 4.

Pupils move through the Level 4 curriculum relevant to Physics which provides a solid foundation as pupils’ progress into fourth year to study for the National qualifications at National 4 or 5 level. While all classes in S3 cover the same content there may be some variation in pace depending on the range of abilities in the class.

At the start of third year we will be working on Space, a unit which helps to discover more about the variety of ways that we experience movement and aspects in our universe. Later topics will include some very Scottish information about production and transmission, as well as a challenge of how to make a Scottish island self-sufficient in energy use. After the October holiday, and working through until into the New Year, we will be working on a Waves and Radiation unit, which picks up and develops ideas about sound and light from the junior school and investigates a broader range of waves in more depth.

Later in S3 there will also be work to study Pupils will be expected to complete homework after most lessons which will help them learn and consolidate the ideas covered. They will also have a series of more formal homework which will need to be completed every 1 to 2 weeks.



Pupils will work towards achieving a National 4, National 5, Higher or Advanced Higher Physics award in S4/5/6 depending on their prior achievement and level of ability. Presentation level at National 4 will depend on the pupil’s achievements in passing all of the SQA internal assessments.



National 5, Higher or Advanced Higher Physics award is gained by sitting an external exam and presentation for this exam is dependent on the pupil passing all of the internal assessments. Pupils will also experience end of unit assessments and Prelims which are a better guide as to how the pupil is progressing through the course and gives a sound indication as their ability to pass the final exam.


Homework is set at roughly fortnightly intervals. Pupils have their notes and summary booklets to help with completion. The Homework sheets, summary notes and PowerPoint presentations used in the course are available for pupils to download from the Glow website. In addition to regular set homework, pupils at senior levels are expected to spend a significant amount of time studying their notes and summary sheets, and generally researching course topics. This should be done right from the start of the course, and not just prior to the exam.


All Physics pupils have access to the appropriate Physics GLOW site which contains invaluable resources to aid revision. Pupils will be working on internally assessed research topics and practical investigations which are compulsory if they are to achieve pass at any National levels. Good attendance is particularly important to avoid missing any of these internal assessments.

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