Physics (IB)

Our Physics Department is housed in our dedicated Science Building and is made up of a team of motivated, enthusiastic and talented teachers and a technician, who specialise in delivering an excellent all-round girl centred Physics education.

Physics lessons for IB students take place in in two specialist labs. As with all our labs, these are excellently resourced with modern, innovative equipment to support the practical requirements of the IB Physics syllabus.

Within the IB syllabus, there is a strong focus on encouraging the girls to take on more independent investigations. This stretches their ability to design and conduct individual experiments and projects and enables them to demonstrate greater creativity and analytical thought. In the second year of the course, each student undertakes an individual investigation, which they have to design, plan and execute. Examples of projects recently undertaken by our students include an investigation into how the temperature of sugar affects the optical plane of polarisation of light transmitted through sugar and fluid damping on bridges.

The importance of translating theory into real-life application is vital at this stage in a Physics education, and to support this aim we undertake a biannual visit to CERN in Geneva.  The trip enhances our students’ understanding of the Particle Physics topic, and enables them to see cutting-edge science being undertaken by a collaboration of over 7,000 scientists from around the world.  Students who are interesting in pursuing a career in engineering can also participate in the Engineering Education Scheme (EES).  This is a 6-month programme during which the students carry out a real, scientific or engineering project for a local company. A recent EES project undertaken by our students was to redesign a chemical dosage point to improve the distribution of ferric sulphate into effluent for Wessex Water.

Each year we are proud to see several of our IB students head off to study a range of Physics or Physics-related courses at top universities across the UK such as Physics with Philosophy, and also a variety of engineering courses including Chemical and Mechanical Engineering.

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