SYLLABUS. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics. For examination in June and November 2014


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1 SYLLABUS Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702 For examination in June and November 2014
2 University of Cambridge International Examinations retains the copyright on all its publications. Registered Centres are permitted to copy material from this booklet for their own internal use. However, we cannot give permission to Centres to photocopy any material that is acknowledged to a third party even for internal use within a Centre. University of Cambridge International Examinations 2011
3 Contents 1. Introduction Why choose Cambridge? 1.2 Why choose Cambridge International AS and A Level? 1.3 Why choose Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics? 1.4 Cambridge AICE (Advanced International Certificate of Education) Diploma 1.5 How can I find out more? 2. Assessment at a glance Syllabus aims and objectives Aims 3.2 Assessment objectives 3.3 Weighting of assessment objectives 3.4 Additional information 4. Syllabus content Structure of the syllabus 4.2 Subject content 5. Practical assessment Introduction 5.2 Paper 3 Advanced Practical Skills 1/2 5.3 Paper 5 6. Appendix Safety in the laboratory 6.2 Mathematical requirements 6.3 Glossary of terms used in Physics papers 6.4 Summary of key quantities, symbols and units 6.5 Data and formulae 6.6 IT usage in Cambridge International A Level Physics 7. Additional information Guided learning hours 7.2 Recommended prior learning 7.3 Progression 7.4 Component codes 7.5 Grading and reporting 7.6 Access 7.7 Resources
4 Introduction 1. Introduction 1.1 Why choose Cambridge? University of Cambridge International Examinations is the world s largest provider of international education programmes and qualifications for 5 to 19 year olds. We are part of the University of Cambridge, trusted for excellence in education. Our qualifications are recognised by the world s universities and employers. Recognition A Cambridge International AS or A Level is recognised around the world by schools, universities and employers. The qualifications are accepted as proof of academic ability for entry to universities worldwide, though some courses do require specific subjects. Cambridge International A Levels typically take two years to complete and offer a flexible course of study that gives students the freedom to select subjects that are right for them. Cambridge International AS Levels often represent the first half of an A Level course but may also be taken as a freestanding qualification. They are accepted in all UK universities and carry half the weighting of an A Level. University course credit and advanced standing is often available for Cambridge International A/AS Levels in countries such as the USA and Canada. Learn more at Excellence in education We understand education. We work with over 9000 schools in over 160 countries who offer our programmes and qualifications. Understanding learners needs around the world means listening carefully to our community of schools, and we are pleased that 98 % of Cambridge schools say they would recommend us to other schools. Our mission is to provide excellence in education, and our vision is that Cambridge learners become confident, responsible, innovative and engaged. Cambridge programmes and qualifications help Cambridge learners to become: confident in working with information and ideas their own and those of others responsible for themselves, responsive to and respectful of others innovative and equipped for new and future challenges engaged intellectually and socially, ready to make a difference. Support in the classroom We provide a worldclass support service for Cambridge teachers and exams officers. We offer a wide range of teacher materials to Cambridge schools, plus teacher training (online and facetoface), expert advice and learnersupport materials. Exams officers can trust in reliable, efficient administration of exams entry and excellent, personal support from our customer services. Learn more at Notforprofit, part of the University of Cambridge We are a part of Cambridge Assessment, a department of the University of Cambridge and a notforprofit organisation. We invest constantly in research and development to improve our programmes and qualifications. 2 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
5 Introduction 1.2 Why choose Cambridge International AS and A Level? Cambridge International AS and A Levels have a proven reputation for preparing students well for university, employment and life. They help develop the indepth subject knowledge and understanding which are so important to universities and employers. You can offer almost any combination of 55 subjects. Students can specialise or study a range of subjects, ensuring breadth. Giving students the power to choose helps motivate them throughout their studies. Cambridge International AS and A Level gives you building blocks to build an individualised curriculum that develops your learners knowledge, understanding and skills in: indepth subject content independent thinking applying knowledge and understanding to new as well as familiar situations handling and evaluating different types of information sources thinking logically and presenting ordered and coherent arguments making judgements, recommendations and decisions presenting reasoned explanations, understanding implications and communicating them clearly and logically working and communicating in English. The syllabuses are international in outlook, but retain a local relevance. They have been created specifically for an international student body with content to suit a wide variety of schools and avoid cultural bias. 1.3 Why choose Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics? Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics qualifications are accepted by universities and employers as proof of essential knowledge and ability. This syllabus is designed: to give a thorough introduction to the study of Physics and scientific methods to develop skills and abilities that are relevant to the safe practice of science and to everyday life: concern for accuracy and precision, objectivity, integrity, the skills of enquiry, initiative and inventiveness to emphasise the understanding and application of scientific concepts and principles, rather than the recall of factual material to enable candidates to become confident citizens in a technological world and to take an informed interest in matters of scientific importance to promote the use of IT as an aid to experiments and as a tool for the interpretation of experimental and theoretical results. Physics is one of a number of science syllabuses that Cambridge offers for details of other syllabuses at Cambridge IGCSE, Cambridge O Level and Cambridge International AS and A Level visit the Cambridge website at Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
6 Introduction 1.4 Cambridge AICE (Advanced International Certificate of Education) Diploma Cambridge AICE (Advanced International Certificate of Education) Diploma is the group award of Cambridge International AS and A Level. Cambridge AICE Diploma involves the selection of subjects from three curriculum groups Mathematics and Science; Languages; Arts and Humanities. A Cambridge International A Level counts as a doublecredit qualification and a Cambridge International AS Level as a singlecredit qualification within the Cambridge AICE Diploma award framework. To be considered for an AICE Diploma, a candidate must earn the equivalent of six credits by passing a combination of examinations at either double credit or single credit, with at least one course coming from each of the three curriculum areas. The AICE Diploma is comprised of examinations administered in May/June and October/November series each year. Physics (9702) falls into Group 1, Mathematics and Science. Learn more about the AICE Diploma at 1.5 How can I find out more? If you are already a Cambridge school You can make entries for this qualification through your usual channels. If you have any questions, please contact us at If you are not yet a Cambridge school Learn about the benefits of becoming a Cambridge school at us at to find out how your organisation can become a Cambridge school. 4 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
7 Assessment at a glance 2. Assessment at a glance Candidates for Advanced Subsidiary (AS) certification will take Papers 1, 2 and 3 (either Advanced Practical Skills 1 or Advanced Practical Skills 2) in a single examination series. Candidates who, having received AS certification, wish to continue their studies to the full Advanced Level qualification may carry their AS marks forward and take just Papers 4 and 5 in the examination series in which they require certification. Candidates taking the complete Advanced Level qualification at the end of the course take all five papers in a single examination series. Candidates may only enter for the papers in the combinations indicated above. Candidates may not enter for single papers either on the first occasion or for resit purposes. This syllabus is for: candidates for AS certification only in either 2013 or 2014, candidates carrying forward AS marks and taking Papers 4 and 5 to certificate their full Advanced Level qualification in 2014, candidates taking the complete Advanced Level qualification at the end of their course in Paper Type of Paper Duration Marks Weighting AS Level A Level 1 Multiple Choice 1 hour 40 31% 15% 2 AS Structured Questions 1 hour 60 46% 23% 3 Advanced Practical Skills 1/2 2 hours 40 23% 12% 4 A2 Structured Questions 2 hours % 5 Planning, Analysis and Evaluation 1 hour 15 min 30 12% Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
8 Assessment at a glance Paper 1 The paper will consist of 40 questions, all of the direct choice type with four options. All questions will be based on the AS syllabus. Candidates will answer all questions. Paper 2 This paper will consist of a variable number of structured questions of variable mark value. All questions will be based on the AS syllabus. Candidates will answer all questions. Candidates will answer on the question paper. Paper 3 Advanced Practical Skills 1/2 In some examination sessions, two versions of the Advanced Practical Skills paper will be available, identified as Advanced Practical Skills 1 and Advanced Practical Skills 2. In other sessions, only Advanced Practical Skills 1 will be available. These papers will be equivalent and each candidate will be required to take only one of them. This is to allow large Centres to split candidates into two groups: one group will take Advanced Practical Skills 1; the other group will take Advanced Practical Skills 2. Each of these papers will be timetabled on a different day. Each paper will consist of two experiments drawn from different areas of Physics. Candidates will be allowed to use the apparatus for each experiment for a maximum of 1 hour. The examiners will not be restricted by the subject content. Candidates will answer all questions. Candidates will answer on the question paper. See the Practical Assessment section of the syllabus for full details. Paper 4 This paper will consist of two sections: Section A (70 marks) will consist of questions based on the A2 core, but may include material first encountered in the AS syllabus. Section B (30 marks) will consist of questions based on Applications of Physics, but may include material first encountered in the core (AS and A2) syllabus. Both sections will consist of a variable number of structured questions of variable mark value. Candidates will answer all questions. Candidates will answer on the question paper. Paper 5 This paper will consist of two questions of equal mark value based on the practical skills of planning, analysis and evaluation. The examiners will not be restricted by the subject content. Candidates will answer all questions. Candidates will answer on the question paper. 6 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
9 Assessment at a glance Availability This syllabus is examined in the May/June examination series and the October/November examination series. This syllabus is available to private candidates. However it is expected that private candidates learn in an environment where practical work is an integral part of the course. Candidates will not be able to perform well in this assessment or successfully progress to further study without this necessary and important aspect of science education. Centres in the UK that receive government funding are advised to consult the Cambridge website for the latest information before beginning to teach this syllabus. Combining this with other syllabuses Candidates can combine this syllabus in an examination series with any other Cambridge syllabus, except: syllabuses with the same title at the same level 8780 Cambridge International AS Level Physical Science. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
10 Syllabus aims and objectives 3. Syllabus aims and objectives 3.1 Aims These are not listed in order of priority. The aims of a course based on this syllabus should be to: 1. provide, through welldesigned studies of experimental and practical science, a worthwhile educational experience for all students, whether or not they go on to study science beyond this level and, in particular, to enable them to acquire sufficient understanding and knowledge to 1.1 become confident citizens in a technological world and be able to take or develop an informed interest in scientific matters 1.2 recognise the usefulness, and limitations, of scientific method and to appreciate its applicability in other disciplines and in everyday life 1.3 be suitably prepared for studies beyond Cambridge International A Level in Physics, in Engineering or in Physicsdependent vocational courses. 2. develop abilities and skills that 2.1 are relevant to the study and practice of science 2.2 are useful in everyday life 2.3 encourage efficient and safe practice 2.4 encourage effective communication. 3. develop attitudes relevant to science such as 3.1 concern for accuracy and precision 3.2 objectivity 3.3 integrity 3.4 the skills of enquiry 3.5 initiative 3.6 inventiveness. 4. stimulate interest in, and care for, the environment in relation to the environmental impact of Physics and its applications. 5. promote an awareness 5.1 that the study and practice of Physics are cooperative and cumulative activities, and are subject to social, economic, technological, ethical and cultural influences and limitations 5.2 that the implications of Physics may be both beneficial and detrimental to the individual, the community and the environment 5.3 of the importance of the use of IT for communication, as an aid to experiments and as a tool for the interpretation of experimental and theoretical results. 6. stimulate students and create a sustained interest in Physics so that the study of the subject is enjoyable and satisfying. 8 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
11 Syllabus aims and objectives 3.2 Assessment objectives The assessment objectives listed below reflect those parts of the Aims that will be assessed in the examination. A Knowledge with understanding Candidates should be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of: 1. scientific phenomena, facts, laws, definitions, concepts and theories 2. scientific vocabulary, terminology and conventions (including symbols, quantities and units) 3. scientific instruments and apparatus, including techniques of operation and aspects of safety 4. scientific quantities and their determination 5. scientific and technological applications with their social, economic and environmental implications. The syllabus content defines the factual knowledge that candidates may be required to recall and explain. Questions testing these objectives will often begin with one of the following words: define, state, describe, or explain (see Glossary of terms). B Handling, applying and evaluating information Candidates should be able (in words or by using symbolic, graphical and numerical forms of presentation) to: 1. locate, select, organise and present information from a variety of sources 2. translate information from one form to another 3. manipulate numerical and other data 4. use information to identify patterns, report trends, draw inferences and report conclusions 5. present reasoned explanations for phenomena, patterns and relationships 6. make predictions and put forward hypotheses 7. apply knowledge, including principles, to new situations 8. evaluate information and hypotheses 9. demonstrate an awareness of the limitations of physical theories and models. These assessment objectives cannot be precisely specified in the syllabus content because questions testing such skills may be based on information that is unfamiliar to the candidate. In answering such questions, candidates are required to use principles and concepts that are within the syllabus and apply them in a logical, reasoned or deductive manner to a new situation. Questions testing these objectives will often begin with one of the following words: predict, suggest, deduce, calculate or determine (see Glossary of terms). Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
12 Syllabus aims and objectives C Experimental skills and investigations 1. follow a detailed set or sequence of instructions and use techniques, apparatus and materials safely and effectively 2. make observations and measurements with due regard for precision and accuracy 3. interpret and evaluate observations and experimental data 4. identify a problem; design and plan investigations; evaluate methods and techniques; suggest possible improvement 5. record observations, measurements, methods and techniques with due regard for precision, accuracy and units. 3.3 Weighting of assessment objectives The table below gives a general idea of the allocation of marks to the assessment objectives, though the balance on each paper may vary slightly. Assessment objective Weighting (%) Assessment components A: Knowledge with understanding 37 Papers 1, 2 and 4 B: Handling information and solving problems 40 Papers 1, 2 and 4 C: Experimental skills and investigations 23 Papers 3 and 5 Teachers should note that there is a greater weighting of 63% for skills (including handling information, solving problems, practical, experimental and investigative skills) compared to the 37% for knowledge and understanding. Teachers schemes of work and the sequence of learning activities should reflect this balance so that the aims of the syllabus are met and the candidates prepared for the assessment. 3.4 Additional information Symbols, signs and abbreviations used in examination papers will follow the recommendations made in the ASE publication Signs, Symbols and Systematics (2000). In accordance with current ASE convention, decimal markers in examination papers will be a single dot on the line. Candidates are expected to follow this convention in their answers. The units kw h, atmosphere, ev and unified atomic mass unit (u) may be used in examination papers without further explanation. 10 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
13 Syllabus content 4. Syllabus content 4.1 Structure of the syllabus The subject content of the syllabus is divided into: AS and A2 Core (sections I VI) Applications of Physics (section VII). The table below shows which parts of the syllabus contain AS material and/or A2 material. Section AS A2 I General Physics 1. Physical quantities and units 2. Measurement techniques II Newtonian mechanics 3. Kinematics 4. Dynamics 5. Forces 6. Work, energy, power 7. Motion in a circle 8. Gravitational field III Matter 9. Phases of matter 10. Deformation of solids 11. Ideal gases 12. Temperature 13. Thermal properties of materials IV Oscillations and waves 14. Oscillations 15. Waves 16. Superposition Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
14 Syllabus content V Electricity and magnetism 17. Electric fields 18. Capacitance 19. Current of electricity 20. D.C. circuits 21. Magnetic fields 22. Electromagnetism 23. Electromagnetic induction 24. Alternating currents VI Modern Physics 25. Charged particles 26. Quantum physics 27. Nuclear physics VII Gathering and communicating information 28. Direct sensing 29. Remote sensing 30. Communicating information 4.2 Subject content Teachers should incorporate the social, environmental, economic and technological aspects of Physics, wherever possible, throughout the syllabus (see Aims 4 and 5). Some examples are included in the syllabus and candidates should be encouraged to apply the principles of these examples to other situations introduced in the course. Further examples have not been included in the syllabus, as this would merely increase the amount of factual recall required. The A2 parts of the syllabus, which will be examined only in the full Advanced Level qualification, are indicated in bold type throughout the subject content. The Applications of Physics section occupies about 12% of the full Advanced Level course. A separate booklet covering this section is available from Cambridge Publications. Aim 5.3 emphasises the importance of Information technology (IT) in this Physics course. Candidates should make full use of IT techniques in their practical work. Teachers may also use IT in demonstrations and simulations. Advice on the use of IT in Cambridge International A Level Physics is printed at the back of the syllabus. The table of subject content is neither intended to be used as a teaching syllabus, nor to represent a teaching order. 12 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
15 Syllabus content AS and A2 Core: Sections I VI inclusive Section I: General physics Recommended prior knowledge Candidates should be aware of the nature of a physical measurement, in terms of a magnitude and a unit. They should have experience of making and recording such measurements in the laboratory. 1. Physical quantities and units Content Learning outcomes 1.1 Physical quantities 1.2 SI Units 1.3 The Avogadro constant 1.4 Scalars and vectors (a) show an understanding that all physical quantities consist of a numerical magnitude and a unit (b) recall the following SI base quantities and their units: mass (kg), length (m), time (s), current (A), temperature (K), amount of substance (mol) (c) express derived units as products or quotients of the SI base units and use the named units listed in this syllabus as appropriate (d) use SI base units to check the homogeneity of physical equations (e) show an understanding of and use the conventions for labelling graph axes and table columns as set out in the ASE publication Signs, Symbols and Systematics (The ASE Companion to Science, 2000) (f) use the following prefixes and their symbols to indicate decimal submultiples or multiples of both base and derived units: pico (p), nano (n), micro (µ), milli (m), centi (c), deci (d), kilo (k), mega (M), giga (G), tera (T) (g) make reasonable estimates of physical quantities included within the syllabus (h) show an understanding that the Avogadro constant is the number of atoms in kg of carbon12 (i) use molar quantities where one mole of any substance is the amount containing a number of particles equal to the Avogadro constant (j) distinguish between scalar and vector quantities and give examples of each (k) add and subtract coplanar vectors (l) represent a vector as two perpendicular components. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
16 Syllabus content 2. Measurement techniques Content 2.1 Measurements 2.2 Errors and uncertainties Learning outcomes (a) use techniques for the measurement of length, volume, angle, mass, time, temperature and electrical quantities appropriate to the ranges of magnitude implied by the relevant parts of the syllabus. In particular, candidates should be able to: measure lengths using a ruler, vernier scale and micrometer measure weight and hence mass using spring and lever balances measure an angle using a protractor measure time intervals using clocks, stopwatches and the calibrated timebase of a cathoderay oscilloscope (c.r.o.) measure temperature using a thermometer as a sensor use ammeters and voltmeters with appropriate scales use a galvanometer in null methods use a cathoderay oscilloscope (c.r.o.) use a calibrated Hall probe (b) use both analogue scales and digital displays (c) use calibration curves (d) show an understanding of the distinction between systematic errors (including zero errors) and random errors (e) show an understanding of the distinction between precision and accuracy (f) assess the uncertainty in a derived quantity by simple addition of actual, fractional or percentage uncertainties (a rigorous statistical treatment is not required). 14 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
17 Syllabus content Section II: Newtonian mechanics Recommended prior knowledge Candidates should be able to describe the action of a force on a body. They should be able to describe the motion of a body and recognise acceleration and constant speed. They should be able to use the relationship average speed = distance / time. 3. Kinematics Content 3.1 Linear motion 3.2 Nonlinear motion Learning outcomes (a) define displacement, speed, velocity and acceleration (b) use graphical methods to represent displacement, speed, velocity and acceleration (c) find displacement from the area under a velocitytime graph (d) use the slope of a displacementtime graph to find velocity (e) use the slope of a velocitytime graph to find acceleration (f) derive, from the definitions of velocity and acceleration, equations that represent uniformly accelerated motion in a straight line (g) solve problems using equations that represent uniformly accelerated motion in a straight line, including the motion of bodies falling in a uniform gravitational field without air resistance (h) recall that the weight of a body is equal to the product of its mass and the acceleration of free fall (i) describe an experiment to determine the acceleration of free fall using a falling body (j) describe qualitatively the motion of bodies falling in a uniform gravitational field with air resistance (k) describe and explain motion due to a uniform velocity in one direction and a uniform acceleration in a perpendicular direction. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
18 Syllabus content 4. Dynamics Content 4.1 Newton s laws of motion 4.2 Linear momentum and its conservation Learning outcomes (a) state each of Newton s laws of motion (b) show an understanding that mass is the property of a body that resists change in motion (c) describe and use the concept of weight as the effect of a gravitational field on a mass (d) define linear momentum as the product of mass and velocity (e) define force as rate of change of momentum (f) recall and solve problems using the relationship F = ma, appreciating that acceleration and force are always in the same direction (g) state the principle of conservation of momentum (h) apply the principle of conservation of momentum to solve simple problems including elastic and inelastic interactions between two bodies in one dimension (knowledge of the concept of coefficient of restitution is not required) (i) recognise that, for a perfectly elastic collision, the relative speed of approach is equal to the relative speed of separation (j) show an understanding that, while momentum of a system is always conserved in interactions between bodies, some change in kinetic energy usually takes place. 5. Forces Content 5.1 Types of force 5.2 Equilibrium of forces 5.3 Centre of gravity 5.4 Turning effects of forces Learning outcomes (a) describe the forces on mass and charge in uniform gravitational and electric fields, as appropriate (b) show an understanding of the origin of the upthrust acting on a body in a fluid (c) show a qualitative understanding of frictional forces and viscous forces including air resistance (no treatment of the coefficients of friction and viscosity is required) (d) use a vector triangle to represent forces in equilibrium (e) show an understanding that the weight of a body may be taken as acting at a single point known as its centre of gravity (f) show an understanding that a couple is a pair of forces that tends to produce rotation only (g) define and apply the moment of a force and the torque of a couple (h) show an understanding that, when there is no resultant force and no resultant torque, a system is in equilibrium (i) apply the principle of moments. 16 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
19 Syllabus content 6. Work, energy, power Content 6.1 Energy conversion and conservation 6.2 Work 6.3 Potential energy, kinetic energy and internal energy 6.4 Power Learning outcomes (a) give examples of energy in different forms, its conversion and conservation, and apply the principle of energy conservation to simple examples (b) show an understanding of the concept of work in terms of the product of a force and displacement in the direction of the force (c) calculate the work done in a number of situations including the work done by a gas that is expanding against a constant external pressure: W = p V (d) derive, from the equations of motion, the formula E k = 1 2 mv 2 (e) recall and apply the formula E k = 1 2 mv 2 (f) distinguish between gravitational potential energy, electric potential energy and elastic potential energy (g) show an understanding and use the relationship between force and potential energy in a uniform field to solve problems (h) derive, from the defining equation W = Fs, the formula E p = mgh for potential energy changes near the Earth s surface (i) recall and use the formula E p = mgh for potential energy changes near the Earth s surface (j) show an understanding of the concept of internal energy (k) recall and understand that the efficiency of a system is the ratio of useful work done by the system to the total energy input (l) show an appreciation for the implications of energy losses in practical devices and use the concept of efficiency to solve problems (m) define power as work done per unit time and derive power as the product of force and velocity W (n) solve problems using the relationships P = and P = Fv. t 7. Motion in a circle Content 7.1 Kinematics of uniform circular motion 7.2 Centripetal acceleration 7.3 Centripetal force Learning outcomes (a) express angular displacement in radians (b) understand and use the concept of angular velocity to solve problems (c) recall and use v = rω to solve problems (d) describe qualitatively motion in a curved path due to a perpendicular force, and understand the centripetal acceleration in the case of uniform motion in a circle (e) recall and use centripetal acceleration a = rω 2, a = v 2 (f) recall and use centripetal force F = mrω 2, F = mv 2 r r Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
20 Syllabus content 8. Gravitational field Content 8.1 Gravitational field 8.2 Force between point masses 8.3 Field of a point mass 8.4 Field near to the surface of the Earth 8.5 Gravitational potential Learning outcomes (a) show an understanding of the concept of a gravitational field as an example of field of force and define gravitational field strength as force per unit mass (b) recall and use Newton s law of gravitation in the form Gm1m 2 F = 2 r (c) derive, from Newton s law of gravitation and the definition of gravitational field strength, the equation g = GM r 2 for the gravitational field strength of a point mass (d) recall and solve problems using the equation g = GM r 2 for the gravitational field strength of a point mass (e) show an appreciation that on the surface of the Earth g is approximately constant and is called the acceleration of free fall (f) define potential at a point as the work done in bringing unit mass from infinity to the point (g) solve problems using the equation φ = GM for the r potential in the field of a point mass (h) recognise the analogy between certain qualitative and quantitative aspects of gravitational field and electric field (i) analyse circular orbits in inverse square law fields by relating the gravitational force to the centripetal acceleration it causes (j) show an understanding of geostationary orbits and their application. 18 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
21 Syllabus content Section III: Matter Recommended prior knowledge Candidates should be able to describe matter in terms of particles, with a qualitative understanding of their behaviour. 9. Phases of matter Content 9.1 Density 9.2 Solids, liquids, gases 9.3 Pressure in fluids 9.4 Change of phase Learning outcomes (a) define the term density (b) relate the difference in the structures and densities of solids, liquids and gases to simple ideas of the spacing, ordering and motion of molecules (c) describe a simple kinetic model for solids, liquids and gases (d) describe an experiment that demonstrates Brownian motion and appreciate the evidence for the movement of molecules provided by such an experiment (e) distinguish between the structure of crystalline and noncrystalline solids with particular reference to metals, polymers and amorphous materials (f) define the term pressure and use the kinetic model to explain the pressure exerted by gases (g) derive, from the definitions of pressure and density, the equation p = ρgh (h) use the equation p = ρgh (i) distinguish between the processes of melting, boiling and evaporation. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
22 Syllabus content 10. Deformation of solids Content Learning outcomes 10.1 Stress, strain 10.2 Elastic and plastic behaviour (a) appreciate that deformation is caused by a force and that, in one dimension, the deformation can be tensile or compressive (b) describe the behaviour of springs in terms of load, extension, elastic limit, Hooke s law and the spring constant (i.e. force per unit extension) (c) define and use the terms stress, strain and the Young modulus (d) describe an experiment to determine the Young modulus of a metal in the form of a wire (e) distinguish between elastic and plastic deformation of a material (f) deduce the strain energy in a deformed material from the area under the forceextension graph (g) demonstrate knowledge of the forceextension graphs for typical ductile, brittle and polymeric materials, including an understanding of ultimate tensile stress. 11. Ideal gases Content 11.1 Equation of state 11.2 Kinetic theory of gases 11.3 Pressure of a gas 11.4 Kinetic energy of a molecule Learning outcomes (a) recall and solve problems using the equation of state for an ideal gas expressed as pv = nrt (n = number of moles) (b) infer from a Brownian motion experiment the evidence for the movement of molecules (c) state the basic assumptions of the kinetic theory of gases (d) explain how molecular movement causes the pressure exerted by a gas and hence deduce the relationship p = 1 Nm < c 2 > 3 V (N = number of molecules) [a rigorous derivation is not required] (e) compare pv = 1 3 Nm < c 2 > with pv = NkT and hence deduce that the average translational kinetic energy of a molecule is proportional to T. 20 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
23 Syllabus content 12. Temperature Content 12.1 Thermal equilibrium 12.2 Temperature scales 12.3 Practical thermometers Learning outcomes (a) show an appreciation that thermal energy is transferred from a region of higher temperature to a region of lower temperature (b) show an understanding that regions of equal temperature are in thermal equilibrium (c) show an understanding that a physical property that varies with temperature may be used for the measurement of temperature and state examples of such properties (d) compare the relative advantages and disadvantages of resistance and thermocouple thermometers as previously calibrated instruments (e) show an understanding that there is an absolute scale of temperature that does not depend on the property of any particular substance (i.e. the thermodynamic scale and the concept of absolute zero) (f) convert temperatures measured in kelvin to degrees Celsius and recall that T / K = T / C Thermal properties of materials Content Learning outcomes 13.1 Specific heat capacity (a) explain using a simple kinetic model for matter why 13.2 Specific latent heat melting and boiling take place without a change in 13.3 Internal energy temperature 13.4 First law of thermodynamics the specific latent heat of vaporisation is higher than specific latent heat of fusion for the same substance a cooling effect accompanies evaporation (b) define and use the concept of specific heat capacity, and identify the main principles of its determination by electrical methods (c) define and use the concept of specific latent heat, and identify the main principles of its determination by electrical methods (d) relate a rise in temperature of a body to an increase in its internal energy (e) show an understanding that internal energy is determined by the state of the system and that it can be expressed as the sum of a random distribution of kinetic and potential energies associated with the molecules of a system (f) recall and use the first law of thermodynamics expressed in terms of the increase in internal energy, the heating of the system and the work done on the system. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
24 Syllabus content Section IV: Oscillations and waves Recommended prior knowledge Candidates should be able to describe basic wave behaviour, gained through a study of optics. They should be aware of the basic ideas of reflection and refraction in light. 14. Oscillations Content 14.1 Simple harmonic motion 14.2 Energy in simple harmonic motion 14.3 Damped and forced oscillations: resonance Learning outcomes (a) describe simple examples of free oscillations (b) investigate the motion of an oscillator using experimental and graphical methods (c) understand and use the terms amplitude, period, frequency, angular frequency and phase difference and express the period in terms of both frequency and angular frequency (d) recognise and use the equation a = ω 2 x as the defining equation of simple harmonic motion (e) recall and use x = x 0 sinωt as a solution to the equation a = ω 2 x (f) recognise and use 2 2 v = v 0 cos ωt, v = ± ω ( x ) 0 x (g) describe, with graphical illustrations, the changes in displacement, velocity and acceleration during simple harmonic motion (h) describe the interchange between kinetic and potential energy during simple harmonic motion (i) describe practical examples of damped oscillations with particular reference to the effects of the degree of damping and the importance of critical damping in cases such as a car suspension system (j) describe practical examples of forced oscillations and resonance (k) describe graphically how the amplitude of a forced oscillation changes with frequency near to the natural frequency of the system, and understand qualitatively the factors that determine the frequency response and sharpness of the resonance (l) show an appreciation that there are some circumstances in which resonance is useful and other circumstances in which resonance should be avoided. 22 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
25 Syllabus content 15. Waves Content 15.1 Progressive waves 15.2 Transverse and longitudinal waves 15.3 Polarisation 15.4 Determination of speed, frequency and wavelength 15.5 Electromagnetic spectrum Learning outcomes (a) describe what is meant by wave motion as illustrated by vibration in ropes, springs and ripple tanks (b) show an understanding of and use the terms displacement, amplitude, phase difference, period, frequency, wavelength and speed (c) deduce, from the definitions of speed, frequency and wavelength, the equation v = fλ (d) recall and use the equation v = fλ (e) show an understanding that energy is transferred by a progressive wave (f) recall and use the relationship intensity (amplitude) 2 (g) compare transverse and longitudinal waves (h) analyse and interpret graphical representations of transverse and longitudinal waves (i) show an understanding that polarisation is a phenomenon associated with transverse waves (j) determine the frequency of sound using a calibrated c.r.o. (k) determine the wavelength of sound using stationary waves (l) state that all electromagnetic waves travel with the same speed in free space and recall the orders of magnitude of the wavelengths of the principal radiations from radio waves to γrays. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
26 Syllabus content 16. Superposition Content 16.1 Stationary waves 16.2 Diffraction 16.3 Interference 16.4 Twosource interference patterns 16.5 Diffraction grating Learning outcomes (a) explain and use the principle of superposition in simple applications (b) show an understanding of experiments that demonstrate stationary waves using microwaves, stretched strings and air columns (c) explain the formation of a stationary wave using a graphical method, and identify nodes and antinodes (d) explain the meaning of the term diffraction (e) show an understanding of experiments that demonstrate diffraction including the diffraction of water waves in a ripple tank with both a wide gap and a narrow gap (f) show an understanding of the terms interference and coherence (g) show an understanding of experiments that demonstrate twosource interference using water, light and microwaves (h) show an understanding of the conditions required if twosource interference fringes are to be observed (i) recall and solve problems using the equation λ = ax for doubleslit D interference using light (j) recall and solve problems using the formula d sinθ = nλ and describe the use of a diffraction grating to determine the wavelength of light (the structure and use of the spectrometer are not included). 24 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
27 Syllabus content Section V: Electricity and magnetism Recommended prior knowledge Candidates should be aware of the two types of charge, charging by friction and by induction. They should be able to distinguish between conductors and insulators using a simple electron model. 17. Electric fields Content 17.1 Concept of an electric field 17.2 Uniform electric fields 17.3 Force between point charges 17.4 Electric field of a point charge 17.5 Electric potential Learning outcomes (a) show an understanding of the concept of an electric field as an example of a field of force and define electric field strength as force per unit positive charge acting on a stationary point charge (b) represent an electric field by means of field lines V (c) recall and use E = to calculate the field strength of the uniform field d between charged parallel plates in terms of potential difference and separation (d) calculate the forces on charges in uniform electric fields (e) describe the effect of a uniform electric field on the motion of charged particles QQ 1 2 (f) recall and use Coulomb s law in the form F = for the force 2 4 πε r 0 between two point charges in free space or air Q (g) recall and use E = 2 for the field strength of a point charge 4 πε r 0 in free space or air (h) define potential at a point in terms of the work done in bringing unit positive charge from infinity to the point (i) state that the field strength of the field at a point is equal to the negative of potential gradient at that point Q (j) use the equation V = for the potential in the field of a point charge 4 πε r 0 (k) recognise the analogy between certain qualitative and quantitative aspects of electric fields and gravitational fields. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
28 Syllabus content 18. Capacitance Content 18.1 Capacitors and capacitance 18.2 Energy stored in a capacitor Learning outcomes (a) show an understanding of the function of capacitors in simple circuits (b) define capacitance and the farad (c) recall and solve problems using C = Q V (d) derive, using the formula C = Q, conservation of charge and the V addition of p.d.s, formulae for capacitors in series and in parallel (e) solve problems using formulae for capacitors in series and in parallel (f) deduce, from the area under a potentialcharge graph, the equation W = 1 Q V and hence W = 1 2 C V Current of electricity Content 19.1 Electric current 19.2 Potential difference 19.3 Resistance and resistivity 19.4 Sources of electromotive force Learning outcomes (a) show an understanding that electric current is the flow of charged particles (b) define charge and the coulomb (c) recall and solve problems using the equation Q = It (d) define potential difference and the volt (e) recall and solve problems using V = W Q (f) recall and solve problems using P = VI, P = I 2 R (g) define resistance and the ohm (h) recall and solve problems using V = IR (i) sketch and explain the IV characteristics of a metallic conductor at constant temperature, a semiconductor diode and a filament lamp (j) sketch the temperature characteristic of a thermistor (thermistors will be assumed to be of the negative temperature coefficient type) (k) state Ohm s law (l) recall and solve problems using R = ρl A (m) define e.m.f. in terms of the energy transferred by a source in driving unit charge round a complete circuit (n) distinguish between e.m.f. and p.d. in terms of energy considerations (o) show an understanding of the effects of the internal resistance of a source of e.m.f. on the terminal potential difference and output power. 26 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
29 Syllabus content 20. D.C. circuits Content 20.1 Practical circuits 20.2 Conservation of charge and energy 20.3 Balanced potentials Learning outcomes (a) recall and use appropriate circuit symbols as set out in the ASE publication Signs, Symbols and Systematics (b) draw and interpret circuit diagrams containing sources, switches, resistors, ammeters, voltmeters, and/or any other type of component referred to in the syllabus (c) recall Kirchhoff s first law and appreciate the link to conservation of charge (d) recall Kirchhoff s second law and appreciate the link to conservation of energy (e) derive, using Kirchhoff s laws, a formula for the combined resistance of two or more resistors in series (f) solve problems using the formula for the combined resistance of two or more resistors in series (g) derive, using Kirchhoff s laws, a formula for the combined resistance of two or more resistors in parallel (h) solve problems using the formula for the combined resistance of two or more resistors in parallel (i) apply Kirchhoff s laws to solve simple circuit problems (j) show an understanding of the use of a potential divider circuit as a source of variable p.d. (k) explain the use of thermistors and lightdependent resistors in potential dividers to provide a potential difference that is dependent on temperature and illumination respectively (l) recall and solve problems using the principle of the potentiometer as a means of comparing potential differences. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
30 Syllabus content 21. Magnetic fields Content 21.1 Concept of magnetic field Learning outcomes (a) show an understanding that a magnetic field is an example of a field of force produced either by currentcarrying conductors or by permanent magnets (b) represent a magnetic field by field lines. 22. Electromagnetism Content 22.1 Force on a currentcarrying conductor 22.2 Force on a moving charge 22.3 Magnetic fields due to currents 22.4 Force between currentcarrying conductors Learning outcomes (a) show an appreciation that a force might act on a currentcarrying conductor placed in a magnetic field (b) recall, and solve problems using, the equation F = BIl sinθ, with directions as interpreted by Fleming s lefthand rule (c) define magnetic flux density and the tesla (d) show an understanding of how the force on a currentcarrying conductor can be used to measure the flux density of a magnetic field using a current balance (e) predict the direction of the force on a charge moving in a magnetic field (f) recall and solve problems using F = BQv sinθ (g) sketch flux patterns due to a long straight wire, a flat circular coil and a long solenoid (h) show an understanding that the field due to a solenoid may be influenced by the presence of a ferrous core (i) explain the forces between currentcarrying conductors and predict the direction of the forces (j) describe and compare the forces on mass, charge and current in gravitational, electric and magnetic fields, as appropriate. 28 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
31 Syllabus content 23. Electromagnetic induction Content Learning outcomes 23.1 Laws of electromagnetic (a) define magnetic flux and the weber induction (b) recall and solve problems using Φ = BA (c) define magnetic flux linkage (d) infer from appropriate experiments on electromagnetic induction: that a changing magnetic flux can induce an e.m.f. in a circuit that the direction of the induced e.m.f. opposes the change producing it the factors affecting the magnitude of the induced e.m.f. (e) recall and solve problems using Faraday s law of electromagnetic induction and Lenz s law (f) explain simple applications of electromagnetic induction. Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics
32 Syllabus content 24. Alternating currents Content 24.1 Characteristics of alternating currents 24.2 The transformer 24.3 Transmission of electrical energy 24.4 Rectification Learning outcomes (a) show an understanding of and use the terms period, frequency, peak value and rootmeansquare value as applied to an alternating current or voltage (b) deduce that the mean power in a resistive load is half the maximum power for a sinusoidal alternating current (c) represent a sinusoidally alternating current or voltage by an equation of the form x = x 0 sinωt (d) distinguish between r.m.s. and peak values and recall and solve problems using the relationship I = rms for the sinusoidal case 2 I 0 (e) show an understanding of the principle of operation of a simple laminated ironcored transformer and recall and solve problems N s Vs Ip using = = for an ideal transformer N p V p Is (f) show an appreciation of the scientific and economic advantages of alternating current and of high voltages for the transmission of electrical energy (g) distinguish graphically between halfwave and fullwave rectification (h) explain the use of a single diode for the halfwave rectification of an alternating current (i) explain the use of four diodes (bridge rectifier) for the fullwave rectification of an alternating current (j) analyse the effect of a single capacitor in smoothing, including the effect of the value of capacitance in relation to the load resistance. 30 Cambridge International AS and A Level Physics 9702
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