Exam Board Subject Leader
AQA Mrs J Tiernan

Students at GCSE study either combined science (trilogy), worth two GCSEs, or study separate GCSEs in each of biology, chemistry and physics. Students studying three separate GCSEs cover the following subjects in physics:

  • Topic 1: Energy
  • Topic 2: Electricity
  • Topic 3: Particle model of matter
  • Topic 4: Atomic structure
  • Topic 5: Forces
  • Topic 6: Waves
  • Topic 7: Magnetism and electromagnetism
  • Topic 8: Space physics



Students sit two papers for GCSE physics. Each paper assesses knowledge and understanding from different topics. Each paper is a written exam lasting 1 hour and 45 minutes. Questions can be multiple choice, structured, closed short answer or open response.

  • Paper 1 examines topics 1-4: energy; electricity; particle model of matter; and atomic structure.
  • Paper 2 examines topics 5-8: forces; waves; magnetism and electromagnetism; space physics.


Progression and Complementary Studies

This GCSE provides an idea preparation for students who may wish to go on to study sciences at A-Level.