Nature of project: experimental, data analysis
Available to students on full-time physics degree schemes or joint students.
Experiments and demonstrations are central in the teaching of A level Physics. The practical aspects improve the understanding of Year 12/13 pupils and enhance their experience of the subject. Within schools such experiments must often be easily replicated by using simple apparatus so that they can be carried out simultaneously by several pupils. The experiments must also be described clearly with instruction that is easy to understand. A limited budget may also be available. For the literature review the student is expected to research the content of A level Physics and identify, with justification, several simple experiments and demonstrations that may be suitable to support the syllabus. Supporting material should also be sought in education journals such as Physics Education (Institute of Physics).
For the project the student is expected to build a set of experimental systems, and write accompanying documentation for each of the experiments and demonstrations. In each case the documentation should describe the rationale of the experiment or demonstration in terms of the underlying physics in a style that can be understood by Year 12/13 pupils. It should also contain a manuscript giving instruction of the experimental procedure, data analysis and interpretation. Sample results should be included.
A successful project will develop beyond the above in one/some of the following directions:
Evaluation of the experiments with the help of Year 0 undergraduate students.
When considering where to take your project, please bear in mind the time available. It is preferable to do fewer things well than to try many and not get conclusive results on any of them. However, sometimes it is useful to have a couple of strands of investigation in parallel to work on in case delays occur.
This project is only available as a Y3 project.
Please speak to Eleri Pryse if you consider doing this project.
Initial literature for students:
Requires technical support with possible assistance by the mechanical and electrical workshops.
|milestone||to be completed by|
|Survey of potential experiments/demonstrations suitable to support the studies of Year 12/13 pupils.||end of November|
|Identification of a set of experiments/demonstrations suitable to support the studies of Year 12/13 pupils to be developed in the laboratory.||Christmas|
|Design and construction of the identified experimental systems.||end of February|
|Accompanying instruction covering rationale, procedure, data collection, analysis, and interpretation.||Easter|
Students taking this project will have to submit a full risk assessment form and a full ethical assessment form before beginning practical work on this project.