IP Physics Syllabus (Adapted from Hwa Chong Institution SIO)
SEC 3 IP PHYSICS SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONAL OBJECTIVES
INTRODUCTION TO PHYSICS (emphasize during Week 2 – 4 only and concurrently with the 1st topic on Measurements and as necessary throughout the Physics course)

recognize that physics is the most basic of the living and nonliving sciences

recognize the contributions of physicists e.g. Albert Einstein, Sir Isaac Newton and realize the importance of their contributions to the present day scientific development

study the relevance of physics in their lives and possible future career developments
PHYSICAL QUANTITIES, UNITS AND MEASUREMENT

understanding that all physical quantities consist of a numerical magnitude and a unit

recall the following base quantities and their units: mass (kg), length (m), time(s), current (A), temperature (K), amount of substance (mol) (Covered in LSS1)

show understanding of derived quantities and their derived units

use the following prefixes and their symbols to indicate decimal submultiples and multiples of the SI units: nano (n), micro (m), milli (m), centi (c), deci (d), kilo (k), mega (M), giga (G), tera (T) (Covered in LSS1)

show an understanding of the orders of magnitude of the sizes of common objects ranging from a typical atom to the Earth

show an understanding of the distinction between accuracy and precision

describe how to measure a variety of lengths with appropriate accuracy by means of tapes, rules, micrometers and calipers, using a vernier scale as necessary
(Covered in LSS1)

describe how to measure a short interval of time including the period of a simple pendulum with appropriate accuracy using stopwatches or appropriate instruments

represent physical quantities in appropriate accuracies

show an understanding of the distinction between systematic errors (including zero errors) and random errors

*suggest appropriate method of estimating physical quantities

*describe how to reduce the effects of random uncertainties and systematic errors
REFLECTION AND REFRACTION
·recall and use the terms for reflection, including normal, angle of incidence and angle of reflection (Covered in LSS 2)
·state that, for reflection, the angle of incidence is equal to the angle of reflection and use this principle in constructions, measurements and calculations
(Covered in LSS 2)
·recall and use the terms used in refraction, including normal, angle of incidence and angle of refraction (Covered in LSS 2)
·explain refraction by means of a change in speed of light in different optical media (Covered in LSS 2)
·explain the terms critical angle and total internal reflection (Covered in LSS 2)
·identify the main ideas in total internal reflection and apply them to the use of optical fibres in telecommunication and state the advantages of their use (Covered in LSS 2)
·recall and apply the relationship sin i/sin r = constant to new situations or to solve related problems.
·understand relative refractive index and absolute refractive index

recall and apply the relationship, n = real depth / apparent depth to new situations or to solve related problems.
LENS

describe the action of converging lens and diverging lens on a beam of light (Covered in LSS 2)

define the term focal length of a converging lens (Covered in LSS 2)

draw ray diagrams to illustrate the formation of real and virtual images of an object by converging lens (Covered in LSS 2)

*recall and apply the relationship the lens equations. (1/f = 1/u + 1/v) to new situations or to solve related problems
SCALARS AND VECTORS

state what is meant by scalars and vectors quantities and give common examples of each

add two vectors to determine a resultant by using a graphical method and trigonometric calculations.

solve problems for a static point mass under the action of 3 forces for 2dimensional cases by using a graphical method and trigonometric calculations.
SPEED, VELOCITY AND ACCELERATION

define displacement, speed, velocity and acceleration.

understand the concept of average speed or velocity.

solve problems using equations which represent uniformly accelerated motion in a straight line, including the motion of bodies falling in a uniform gravitational field without air resistance.

plot and interpret displacementtime graph and velocitytime graph

use graphical methods to represent distance travelled, displacement, speed, velocity
and acceleration (uniform or nonuniform) with respect to time. 
use the slope of a displacementtime graph to find the velocity.

use the slope of a velocitytime graph to find the acceleration.

interpret given examples of nonuniform acceleration

deduce from the shape of a distancetime graph when a body is:
(i) at rest
(ii) moving with uniform speed
(iii) moving with nonuniform speed

deduce from the shape of a speedtime graph when a body is:
(i) at rest
(ii) moving with uniform speed
(iii) moving with uniform acceleration
(iv) moving with nonuniform acceleration

calculate the area under a velocitytime graph to determine the displacement travelled for motion with uniform speed or uniform acceleration

state that the acceleration of free fall for a body near to the Earth is constant and is
approximately 10 m s2 
describe the motion of bodies with constant weight falling with or without air resistance, including reference to terminal velocity
DYNAMICS

state each of Newton's 1st and 2nd laws of motion.

apply Newton’s laws to

describe the effect of balanced and unbalanced forces on a body

apply Newton’s laws to describe the ways in which a force may change the motion of a body

state Newton’s 3rd law of motion.

identify actionreaction pairs acting on two interacting bodies


identify forces acting on an object and draw free body diagram(s) representing the forces acting on the object (for cases involving forces acting in at most two dimensions)

define linear momentum as the product of mass and velocity.

define force as a rate of change of momentum.

solve problems for a static point mass under the action of 3 forces for 2dimensional cases using a graphical method and trigonometric calculations.

recall and solve problems using the relationship F = ma, appreciating that acceleration and force are always in the same direction.

apply the relationship between resultant force, mass and acceleration to new situations or to solve related problems

explain the effects of friction on the motion of a body
MASS, WEIGHT AND DENSITY

state that mass is a measure of the amount of substance in a body

show an understanding that the mass of a body resists a change in a state of rest or motion (inertia).

state that a gravitational field is a region in which a mass experiences a force due to gravitational attraction

define gravitational field strength g as gravitational force per unit mass

recall and apply the relationship weight = mass × gravitational field strength to new situations or to solve related problems

distinguish between mass and weight (Covered in LSS1)

recall and apply the relationship density = mass / volume to new situations or to solve
related problems (Covered in LSS1)
WORK, ENERGY AND POWER

show understanding that kinetic energy, potential energy (chemical, elastic, gravitational), thermal energy, light energy, electrical energy and nuclear energy are different forms of energy

state the principle of the conservation of energy and apply the principle of the conservation of energy to new situations or to solve related problems

calculate the efficiency of an energy conversion using the formula efficiency = energy converted to useful / total energy input

state that kinetic energy, Ek = ½ mv2 and gravitational potential energy, Ep = mgh (for potential energy changes near the Earth’s surface)

apply the relationships for kinetic energy and potential energy to new situations or to solve related problems

recall and apply the relationship work done = magnitude of a force x the distance moved in the direction of the force to new situations or to solve related problems

recall and apply the relationship power = work done/time taken to new situations or to solve related problems
SIMPLE KINETIC MOLECULAR MODEL OF MATTER

compare the properties of solids, liquids and gases (Covered in LSS1)

describe qualitatively the molecular structure of solids, liquids and gases, relating their properties to the forces and distances between molecules and to the motion of the molecules (Covered in LSS1)

infer from Brownian motion experiment the evidence for the movement of molecules (Covered in LSS1)

describe the relationship between the motion of molecules and temperature

explain the pressure of a gas in terms of the motion of the molecules

recall and explain the following relationships using the kinetic model

a change in pressure of a fixed mass of gas at constant volume is caused by a change in temperature of the gas (Pressure Law)

a change in volume of a fixed mass of gas at constant pressure is caused by a change in temperature of the gas (Charles’ Law)

a change in pressure of a fixed mass of gas at constant temperature is caused by a change in volume of the gas (Boyle’s Law)

use the relationships stated above in related situations and to solve problems using appropriate formulas.

*recall and apply the relationship PV = nRT to new situations or to solve related problems

*show understanding that at absolute zero, particles have minimum energy and that the system neither emits nor absorbs energy
TRANSFER OF THERMAL ENERGY

show understanding that thermal energy is transferred from a region of higher temperature to a region of lower temperature

describe, in molecular terms, how energy transfer occurs in solids

describe, in terms of density change, convection in fluids

explain that energy transfer of a body by radiation does not require a material medium and the rate of energy transfer is affected by
(i) colour and texture of the surface
(ii) surface temperature
(iii) surface area

apply the concept of thermal energy transfer to everyday applications
TEMPERATURE

explain how a physical property which varies with temperature, such as volume of liquid column, resistance of wire and electromotive force produced by junctions formed with wires of two different metals, may be used to define temperature scales.

describe the process of calibration of thermometer, including the need for fixed points such as ice point and steam point

discuss the structure, sensitivity, range, linearity and responsiveness of thermometers.

state the relation between Kelvin and Celsius scales of temperatures (T = q + 273)
THERMAL PROPERTIES OF MATTER

describe a rise in temperature of a body to an increase in internal energy (random thermal energy)

define the terms heat capacity and specific heat capacity

recall and apply the relationship thermal energy = mass x specific heat capacity x change in temperature to new situations or to solve related problems

describe melting/solidification and boiling/condensation in terms of energy transfer without a change in temperature

explain the difference between boiling and evaporation

define the terms latent heat and specific latent heat

explain latent heat in terms of molecular behaviour

recall and apply the relationship thermal energy = mass x specific latent heat to new situations or to solve related problems

sketch and interpret a cooling curve
WAVES

describe what is meant by wave motion as illustrated by vibration in ropes, springs and experiments using a ripple tank

state what is meant by the term wavefront

show understanding that waves transfer energy without transferring matter

define speed, frequency, wavelength, period and amplitude

recall and apply the relationship velocity = frequency x wavelength to new situations or to solve related problems

compare transverse and longitudinal waves and give suitable examples of each

*understand qualitatively the phenomenon of interference and its relation to waveparticle duality theory.

*state some examples of diffraction.

* describe the diffraction fringe patterns produced by a single edge, a narrow slit and a circular aperture.

* state the principle of superposition and explain what is meant by constructive and destructive interference.
Electromagnetic Spectrum (Homebased learning)

state that all electromagnetic waves are transverse waves that travel with the same high speed in vacuum and state the magnitude of this speed

describe the main components of the electromagnetic spectrum

discuss the role of the following components in the stated applications:

radiowaves in radio and television communication

microwaves in satellite television and microwave oven

infrared waves in infrared remote controllers and intruder alarms

light in optical fibres for medical uses and telecommunications

ultraviolet in sunbeds, and sterilisation

Xrays in radiological and engineering applications

Gamma rays in medical treatment

describe the effects of absorbing electromagnetic waves, e.g. heating, ionisation and damage to living cells and tissue
SOUND (SELF STUDY)

describe the production of sound by vibrating sources

describe the longitudinal nature of sound waves in terms of the processes of compression and rarefaction and deduce that

a medium is required in order to transmit these waves

the speed of sound differs in air, liquids and solids

describe a direct method for the determination of the speed of sound in air and make necessary calculation

relate the loudness of a sound wave to amplitude and pitch to its frequency

explain why different instruments produce sounds of different quality

describe how the reflection of sound may produce an echo, and how this may be used for measuring distances

define ultrasound and describe one use of ultrasound, e.g. cleaning, quality control and prenatal scanning

*describe and explain the Doppler Effect and apply the concept in new situations.