PHYSICS (Higher and Standard Level)

Physics does involve calculation, but it is not considered a branch of Mathematics. Competence with algebra and an ability to think in a logical way will help see you through. It is very important to realise that standard level Physics is not in any sense easier than higher level. It contains fewer topics and is allocated fewer timetabled lessons, but the topics that it covers are tested to exactly the same level of difficulty as the higher physics paper.

As the DP Physics guide articulates, “Physics is the most fundamental of the experimental sciences, as it seeks to explain the universe itself from the very smallest particles — currently accepted as quarks, which may be truly fundamental — to the vast distances between galaxies.”

Course objectives

The IB Diploma physics course aims to provide students with a solid understanding of the ‘classical Physics’ concepts and ideas that permeate both traditional “Newtonian” mechanics and the more modern “Quantum Mechanical” view of the subject. The course aims to develop the understanding of physics relevant to modern science and technology. Conceptual skills and problem solving skills will be developed in parallel. The course aims to introduce the main ideas in an interesting and practical fashion. Emphasis is placed on the use of IT in data collection. Through hands-on experience, and the study of theories, models and laws, students gain a close insight into the world around them. From Newton to Einstein, from quarks to galaxies, Physics takes you on a voyage of discovery and understanding. As the DP Physics guide states, “The Diploma Programme physics course allows students to develop traditional practical skills and techniques and increase their abilities in the use of mathematics, which is the language of physics. It also allows students to develop interpersonal and digital communication skills which are essential in modern scientific endeavour and are important life-enhancing, transferable skills in their own right.”