Unit 0 - Physics Skills

Unit 0 - Physics Skills

Owner: Mike Madden
MEASUREMENTS Understandings: Fundamental and derived SI units Scientific notation and metric multipliers Significant figures Orders of magnitude Estimation Applications and skills: Using SI units in the correct format for all required measurements, final answers to calculations and presentation of raw and processed data Using scientific notation and metric multipliers Quoting and comparing ratios, values and approximations to the nearest order of magnitude Estimating quantities to an appropriate number of significant figures Guidance: SI unit usage and information can be found at the website of Bureau International des Poids et Mesures Students will not need to know the definition of SI units except where explicitly stated in the relevant topics in this guide Candela is not a required SI unit for this course Guidance on any use of non-SI units such as eV, MeV c-2, ly and pc will be provided in the relevant topics in this guide Further guidance on how scientific notation and significant figures are used in examinations can be found in the Teacher support material UNCERTAINTY Understandings: Random and systematic errors Absolute, fractional and percentage uncertainties Error bars Uncertainty of gradient and intercepts Applications and skills: Explaining how random and systematic errors can be identified and reduced Collecting data that include absolute and/or fractional uncertainties and stating these as an uncertainty range (expressed as: best estimate ± uncertainty range) Propagating uncertainties through calculations involving addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and raising to a power Determining the uncertainty in gradients and intercepts Guidance: Analysis of uncertainties will not be expected for trigonometric or logarithmic functions in examinations Further guidance on how uncertainties, error bars and lines of best fit are used in examinations can be found in the Teacher support material VECTORS VS. SCALARS Understandings: Vector and scalar quantities Combination and resolution of vectors Applications and skills: Solving vector problems graphically and algebraically Guidance: Resolution of vectors will be limited to two perpendicular directions Problems will be limited to addition and subtraction of vectors and the multiplication and division of vectors by scalars
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