Course Content

MODULE 1: MECHANICS (Physical Quantities) On completion of this Module, students should: 1. understand physical quantities; 2. apply the SI system of units and standard conventions; 3. solve problems of bodies at rest, in uniform motion, or uniformly accelerated motion under the influence of forces in one and two dimensions; 4. appreciate the effects of forces acting on a body; 5. understand the principle of conservation of energy; 6. design and carry out experiments to test relationships between physical quantities; 7. appreciate that the measurement of a physical quantity is subject to uncertainty
 Express physical quantities as a numerical magnitude and unit;
 Distinguish between scalar and vector quantities, and state examples;
 Combine and resolve vectors;
 Measure physical quantities using appropriate instruments;
 Construct and use calibration curves;
 Rearrange relationships between physical quantities so that linear graphs may be plotted;
 Distinguish between precision and accuracy;
 Estimate the uncertainty in a derived quantity from actual, fractional or percentage uncertainties.

MODULE 1: MECHANICS (SI Units)
 State the base quantities including their symbols and S.I. units;
 Use base quantities or units to obtain expressions for derived quantities or units;
 Use the Avogadro constant (the number of atoms in 0.012 kg of the C12 isotope) as a numerical entity;
 Use the concept of the mole as the quantity of substance containing a number of particles equal to the Avogadro constant;
 Use prefixes and their symbols to express multiples (up to 109 ) and submultiples (down to 1012) of units of base and derived quantities;
 Use base units to check the homogeneity of physical equations.

MODULE 1: MECHANICS (Motion)
 Explain displacement, speed, velocity, and acceleration;
 Use graphs to represent displacement, speed, velocity, and acceleration in a single dimension;
 Use the gradient of and area under motion graphs to solve problems;
 Derive equations representing uniformly accelerated motion in a single dimension;
 Use the equations of motion to solve problems, on uniformly accelerated motion;
 Solve problems involving bodies undergoing projectile motion;
 Show that projectile motion is parabolic;
 State Newton’s laws of motion;
 Explain ‘linear momentum’;
 State the principle of conservation of linear momentum;
 Apply the principle of conservation of linear momentum;
 Distinguish between inelastic and perfectly elastic collisions;
 Explain and use the concept of the impulse of a force;
 Draw and interpret F – t graphs;
 Solve problems related to Newton’s laws of motion;
 Express angular displacement in radians;
 Apply the concept of angular velocity to problems involving circular motion;
 Apply an expression to problems involving circular motion;
 Use equations for centripetal acceleration and centripetal force;
 Use the equations circular motion to solve problems;
 Use Newton’s law of universal gravitation in problems involving attraction between masses;
 Explain and use the term gravitational field strengths (at the Earth’s surface or above);
 Solve problems involving circular orbits;
 Discuss the motion of geostationary satellites and their applications.

MODULE 1: MECHANICS (Effects of Forces)
 Explain the origin of the upthrust acting on a body wholly or partially immersed in a fluid, and use this knowledge to solve problems;
 Explain the nature, cause and effects of resistive forces;
 Use the concept of terminal velocity to solve problems involving motion through a fluid;
 Apply the principle of moments to solve problems;
 Use the concepts of static and dynamic equilibria to solve problems.

MODULE 1: MECHANICS (Conservation of Energy)
 Use the concept of work as the product of force and displacement in the direction of the force;
 Derive and use the formula for kinetic energy
 Distinguish between kinetic and potential energy;
 Distinguish between different types of potential energy;
 Derive and use the formula for potential energy changes near the Earth’s surface;
 Apply the concept of power as the rate of doing work;
 Apply the concept of efficiency to problems involving energy transfer;
 State examples of different forms of energy;
 Describe examples of energy conversion;
 Apply the concept of energy conversion to Caribbean situation;
 Discuss critically mechanisms for the efficient use of energy in the Caribbean.

MODULE 2: OSCILLATIONS AND WAVES (Harmonic Motion) On completion of this Module, students should: 1. understand the different types of oscillatory motion; 2. appreciate the properties common to all waves; 3. recognise the unique properties of different types of waves; 4. apply their knowledge of waves to the functioning of the eye and the ear
 Use the equations of simple harmonic motion to solve problems;
 Recall the conditions necessary for simple harmonic motion;
 Describe graphically the changes in displacement, velocity and acceleration with time and with displacement for simple harmonic motion;
 Derive and use the period of the simple pendulum as T = 2 π √(l/ g ) and of the mass on a spring as T = 2 π √ (m/ k )
 Describe the interchange of kinetic and potential energy of an oscillating system during simple harmonic motion;
 Calculate the energy of a body undergoing simple harmonic motion;
 Describe examples of forced oscillations and resonance;
 Discuss cases in which resonance is desirable and cases in which it is not;
 Describe damped oscillations and represent such motion graphically;
 Explain how damping is achieved in some reallife examples.

MODULE 2: OSCILLATIONS AND WAVES (Properties of Waves)
 Use the following terms: displacement, amplitude, period, frequency, velocity in relation to the behaviour of waves;
 Differentiate between transverse and longitudinal waves in terms of the movement of particles in the medium of transmission and the energy of the waves;
 Represent transverse and longitudinal waves graphically;
 Explain “polarisation” and give examples of polarised waves;
 Derive and use the equation to solve problems involving wave motion
 Use the relationship intensity is proportional to (amplitude )² for a wave;
 Use the terms phase and phase difference with reference to behaviour of waves;
 Distinguish between stationary and progressive waves;
 Explain the properties of stationary waves and perform related calculations;
 Describe practical applications of sound waves in industry, such as the use of sonar waves in determining the depth of the sea, and in medicine, such as in foetal imaging;
 Discuss application of sound waves to musical instruments;
 Apply the laws of reflection and refraction to the behaviour of waves;
 Describe experiments to demonstrate diffraction of waves in both narrow and wide gaps;
 Explain the meaning of coherence as applied to waves;
 Explain the terms superposition and interference of waves;
 State the conditions necessary for twosource interference fringes of waves to be observed and perform experiments to demonstrate this;
 Discuss the principles of interference and diffraction as applied to waves;
 Derive and use the approximation to solve problems;
 Use the expression n λ = a sin θ ; for interference and diffraction (a=slit spacing);
 Use the diffraction grating to determine the wavelength and frequency of light waves;
 Discuss the nature of light as electromagnetic radiation with reference to its diffractive properties;
 List the orders of magnitude of the wavelengths of the em spectrum;
 Define refractive index in terms of velocity of waves;
 Use Snell’s Law;
 Explain total internal reflection and determine the value of critical angle;
 Identify and discuss practical applications of total internal reflection.

MODULE 2: OSCILLATIONS AND WAVES (Physics of the Ear and Eye)
 Discuss the response of the ear to incoming sound waves, in terms of sensitivity, frequency response and intensity;
 State the orders of magnitude of the threshold of hearing and the intensity at which discomfort is experienced;
 Use the equation intensity level
 Discuss the subjective qualities of the terms ‘noise’ and ‘loudness’;
 Discuss the subjective qualities of the terms ‘noise’ and ‘loudness’;
 Solve problems using lens formulae;
 Discuss how the eye forms focused images of objects at different distances;
 Explain the terms ‘depth of focus’, ‘accommodation’, ‘long sight’, ‘short sight’, ‘astigmatism’, ‘cataracts’, and discuss how defects of the eye can be corrected;
 Discuss the formation of focused images in the simple camera and magnifying glass.

MODULE 3: THERMAL AND MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF MATTER (Design and Use of Thermometers) On completion of this Module, students should: 1. understand the principles involved in the design and use of thermometers; 2. be aware of the thermal properties of materials and their practical importance in everyday life; 3. understand the various modes of heat transfer; 4. be familiar with the kinetic theory of gases and the equation of state of an ideal gas; 5. display a working knowledge of the first law of thermodynamics; 6. be aware of the mechanical properties of materials and their practical importance in everyday life.
 Discuss how a physical property may be used to measure temperature;
 Discuss how a physical property may be used to measure temperature;
 Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of these thermometers;
 Recall that the absolute thermodynamic scale of temperature does not depend on the property of any particular substance;
 Determine temperatures in kelvin, in degrees Celsius and on the empirical centigrade scales.

MODULE 3: THERMAL AND MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF MATTER (Thermal Properties)
 Express the internal energy of a system as the sum of the kinetic and potential energies associated with the molecules of the system;
 Relate a rise in temperature to an increase in internal energy;
 Explain the terms ‘heat capacity’ and ‘specific heat capacity’;
 Perform experiments to determine the specific heat capacity of liquids and metals by electrical methods and by the method of mixtures;
 Explain the concepts of ‘melting’ and ‘boiling’ in terms of energy input with no change in temperature;
 Relate the concepts of melting and boiling to changes in internal potential energy;
 Explain the term ‘specific latent heat’;
 Use graphs of temperature against time to determine freezing or melting points and boiling points;
 Perform experiments to determine the specific latent heats;
 Explain the cooling which accompanies evaporation;
 Solve numerical problems using the equations

MODULE 3: THERMAL AND MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF MATTER (Heat Transfer)
 Describe the mechanism of thermal conduction;
 Use the equation to solve problems in onedimensional heat flow;
 Solve numerical problems involving composite conductors;
 Discuss the principles involved in the determination of thermal conductivity of good and bad conductors;
 Explain the process of convection as a consequence of a change of density, and use this concept to explain ocean currents and winds;
 Discuss thermal radiation and solve problems using Stefan’s equation;
 Explain the greenhouse effect;
 Discuss applications of the transfer of energy by conduction, convection and radiation;
 Discuss the development of heating and cooling systems to reduce the Caribbean dependency on fossil fuels.

MODULE 3: THERMAL AND MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF MATTER (The Kinetic Theory of Gases)
 Use the equation of state for an ideal gas
 Discuss the basic assumptions of the kinetic theory of gases;
 Explain how molecular movement is responsible for the pressure exerted by a gas;
 Derive and use the equation
 Use the following to deduce the equation for the average translational kinetic energy of monatomic molecules;
 Deduce total kinetic energy of a monatomic gas.

MODULE 3: THERMAL AND MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF MATTER (First Law of Thermodynamics)
 Use the term ‘molar heat capacity’;
 Discuss why the molar heat capacity of a gas at constant volume is different from that of a gas at constant pressure;
 Calculate the work done on a gas using the equation
 Deduce work done from a pV graph;
 Express the first law of thermodynamics in terms of the change in internal energy, the heat supplied to the system and the work done on the system;
 Solve problems involving the first law of thermodynamics.

MODULE 3: THERMAL AND MECHANICAL PROPERTIES OF MATTER (Mechanical Properties of Materials)
 Explain and use the terms ‘density’ and ‘pressure’;
 Derive and use the equation for the pressure difference in a liquid;
 Relate the difference in the structures and densities of solids, liquids and gases to simple ideas of the spacing, ordering and motion of their molecules;
 Describe a simple kinetic model for the behaviour of solids, liquids and gases;
 Distinguish between the structure of crystalline and noncrystalline solids, with particular reference to metals, polymers and glasses;
 Discuss the stretching of springs and wire in terms of load extension;
 Use the relationship among ‘stress’, ‘strain’ and ‘the Young modulus’ to solve problems;
 Perform experiments to determine the Young modulus of a metal in the form of a wire;
 Demonstrate knowledge of the forceextension graphs for typical ductile, brittle and polymeric materials;
 Deduce the strain energy in a deformed material from a forceextension graph;
 Distinguish between elastic and inelastic deformations of a material;
 Discuss the importance of elasticity in structures.