GCSE Physics

What is GCSE Physics?

Physics is the study of everyday things and how they work. The subject covers a very wide range of material and attempts to show the relationships which govern natural phenomena and the connections between them. Physics also provides a foundation for those who wish to study science at A level.

The Specification

AQA Physics 4403 - The scheme of assessment consists of two tiers: Foundation Tier and Higher Tier. Foundation Tier assesses grades G to C and Higher tier assesses grades D to A*.


PH1HP Physics 1  1 hour exam    25%
PH2HP Physics 2  1 hour exam   25%
PH3HP Physics 3  1 hour exam  25%
PH4P Investigative skills  Controlled assessment  25%

Course content


PH1HP Physics 1
P1.1 The transfer of energy by heating processes and the factors that affect the rate at which that energy is transferred
P1.2 Energy and efficiency
P1.3 The usefulness of electrical appliances P1.4 Methods we use to generate electricity
P1.5 The use of waves for communication and to provide evidence that the universe is expanding

PH2HP Physics 2
P2.1 Forces and their effects
P2.2 The kinetic energy of objects speeding up or slowing down
P2.3 Currents in electrical circuits
P2.4 Using mains electricity safely and the power of electrical appliances
P2.5 What happens when radioactive substances decay, and the uses and dangers of their emissions
P2.6 Nuclear fission and nuclear fusion

PH3HP Physics 3
P3.1 Medical applications of physics
P3.2 Using physics to make things work
P3.3 Keeping things moving

PH4P Investigative Skills
P4.1 Plan practical ways to develop and test candidates own scientific ideas
P4.2 Assess and manage risks when carrying out practical work
P4.3 Collect primary and secondary data
P4.4 Select and process primary and secondary data
P4.5 Analyse and interpret primary and secondary data
P4.6 Use scientific models and evidence to develop hypotheses, arguments and explanations

Reading List

Breithaupt  AQA Science GCSE Physics  Nelson Thornes