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City of London

School for girls

The aim of the Physics Department is to provide a supportive and stimulating environment where students can learn, investigate and enjoy the wonders of our physical world.


The Physics Department provides a vibrant, interesting and enjoyable atmosphere for all students at all levels. The staff here have great passion and enthusiasm for the subject, which is immediately transferred to lessons and students; making Physics an extremely successful subject through all the year groups at City.


Year 7 - 8

Students are introduced to Physics in the first two years in the Senior School; partly to prepare them for the IGCSE course in Year 9 and partly to build up the necessary skills to allow them to investigate Science.

Years 9 -11

In Year 9 students start the Edexcel IGCSE Course, which is continued through Year 10 and into Year 11. This is a linear course and all examinations are taken at the end of Year 11. The details of the modules we cover are:

Year 9

  1. Energy Transfer
  2. Thermal Energy
  3. Static Electricity
  4. Maths for Physics
  5. Density and Pressure
  6. Current Electricity I
  7. Magnestism
  8. Energy Resources
  9. Work, Efficiency and Power
  10. Motion Graphs
  11. Properties of Waves

Year 10

  1. Forces
  2. Change of State
  3. Current Electricity II
  4. Moments
  5. EM Spectrum
  6. Materials
  7. Mains Electricty
  8. Molecules and Ideal Gas

Year 11

  1. Momentum
  2. Light
  3. Motor Effect
  4. Radioactivity
  5. Astronomy
  6. Sound
  7. Induction and Transformers
  8. Particles

(Although topics may not be covered in this order)


At A level we offer the Edexcel course.

During the first year (AS), students cover concepts that include mechanics, projectiles, resultant forces, addition of vectors, energy, electricity, waves, materials and quantum physics.

In the second year (A level), students cover concepts that included space, nuclear radiation, particle physics, gravitational, electric and magnetic fields, circular and simple harmonic motion.

Throughout the 2 year course there are core practicals that are internally assessed and are used to award the practical competency certificate.  This is in addition to the A level grade and universities may require students to pass this when offering places.

The AS course is made up of 2 x 1 hour 30 minute papers.

The A level course assessment is made up of 2 x 1 hour 45 minute papers, a 2 hour 30 minute paper covering the practical principles in Physics and the practical competency award.



A Level: Edexcel


The department organises interesting speakers each year in an attempt to inspire and enrich the students love of the subject. Recent speakers include:

  • Simon Singh - The Big Bang
  • Dr Melanie Windridge - Powering the Future
  • Professor Peter Kalmus - The Discovery of W and Z Particles
  • Professor Averil Macdonald - Fantastic Plastic
  • David Broadie - Ice, Rock and Beauty
  • Brian Foster - String Theory and The Music That Inspired Albert Einstein

The Department also runs an annual trip to CERN with City of London School. The students always find this an amazing experience, especially after taking a lift 100m underground to see a detector close up.

  • 2013 - A Level students trip to Geneva

Big Bang Club  - award winning Physics film

"You get to learn more in depth about each topic, which is really interesting and the experiments are really fun - especially the dancing sand experiment." Lisanne

Head of Department

Mr M Wilkinson