This module advances the material you will have learnt in GCSE and allows you to explore the concepts and significance of circuits, circuit components, resistance, electromagnetic waves and quantum physics.

This module then flows into module 6 of the A2 material.

We will be focussing on the following areas – please click on the relevant one for more information:

Charge and Current
This short section introduces the ideas of charge and current. Understanding electric current is essential when dealing with electrical circuits.

Energy, Power and Resistance
This section provides knowledge and understanding of electrical symbols, electromotive force, potential difference, resistivity and power. There is a desire to use energy saving devices, such as LED lamps, in homes. You will have the opportunity to understand the link between environmental damage from power stations and the impetus to use energy saving devices in the home and how customers can make informed decisions when buying domestic appliances.

Electrical Circuits

This section provides knowledge and understanding of electrical circuits, internal resistance and potential dividers. LDRs and thermistors are used to show how changes in light intensity and temperature respectively can be monitored using potential dividers.  Setting up electrical circuits, including potential divider circuits, provides an ideal way of enhancing experimental skills, understanding electrical concepts and managing risks when using power supplies.

Waves
This section provides knowledge and understanding of wave properties, electromagnetic waves, superposition and stationary waves. The wavelength of visible light is too small to be measured directly using a ruler. However, superposition experiments can be done in the laboratory to determine wavelength of visible light using a laser and a double slit. There are opportunities to discuss how the double-slit experiment demonstrated the wave-like behaviour of light.

Quantum Physics
This section provides knowledge and understanding of photons, the photoelectric effect, de Broglie waves and wave–particle duality.  In the photoelectric effect experiment, electromagnetic waves are used to eject surface electrons from metals. The electrons are ejected instantaneously and their energy is independent of the intensity of the radiation. The wave model is unable to explain the interaction of these waves with matter. This single experiment led to the development of the photon model and was the cornerstone of quantum physics.