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Important Information

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Main Reception will close from 12:45 on Thursday 11 July. Main Reception will be open from 9am to 3pm only from Monday 12 August until Wednesday 28 August. Normal college Reception opening hours will commence at 8am on Thursday 29 August. The college site will be open, except on Bank Holiday Monday 26 August, however, most staff will be unavailable. If you need to contact a Department by email, please take a look at our Contact Us page.

Physics A Level

Qualification: GCE A Level in Physics
Exam Board & Specification Code: OCR; H556; Specification
Course Entry Requirements: 4 in English Language GCSE and 6 in Maths GCSE and 2x Grade 6s in 2 Science GCSEs (Physics plus one other, Combined Science accepted but not Applied Science) Please make sure that you have understood the overall entry requirements to study at BHASVIC. These are available here and outline the GCSE grades you need to take up one of the Study Programmes at the college.
Length and size of qualification: 2 year single course
Timetable hours: 4.5 hours per week
Assessment method: 3 exams and a practical assessment
BHASVIC Department: Chemistry and Physics

Acting Co-Heads of Department

What will I study?

You will study forces, motion, electrons, waves and photons in the first year. Throughout this subject and especially in the second year you will apply your knowledge to astrophysics, motion and electromagnetism. You will learn how to use physical quantities and units, scalars and vectors. Practical work is an important aspect, and students generally do one a week (no separate coursework component); students keep a lab book to evidence their skills. Goes well with Maths, Chemistry, Biology, Computing in particular.

Is this course right for me?

Successful physics students enjoy maths and particularly algebra. They are curious about how things work and thrive on the challenges of problem solving. They work effectively both on their own and in groups. They work carefully and with precision in both their practical and written work. Students will succeed most if they are self-motivated independent learners. Flipped learning is used for all topics, lessons are interactive and build upon independent study. There are lots of opportunities to get help and support from the department. Mathematical fluency is vital for success at A level. We run an ‘in-house’ Maths for Physics course for students who do not do A level Maths but this does not lead to a qualification. If you want to study Physics at University you must study Maths A level as well.

Where next?

A Physics A level is a great starting point for a career in scientific research, as well as in a range of careers in business, finance, IT, astrophysics, geophysics, materials science, forensic science, medical science (e.g. Medical Physicist) and engineering. Physics will help you to build up your problem solving, research, and analytical skills. With these skills you will be able to test out new ideas plus question and investigate other peoples’ theories, which is useful for any kind of job that involves research or debate. Job roles where Physics is useful would include: Metallurgist, Nanotechnologist, Radiation Protection Practitioner, Teacher. Jobs where your degree would be useful include: Investment Analyst, Meteorologist, Nuclear Engineer, Operational Researcher, Patent Attorney, PPC Specialist and Systems Developer. Useful websites include the Institute of Physics, Physics.org, All About Careers and The Apprenticeship Guide.

Apply View Department

Last year, 78 BHASVIC students went onto study Engineering related degrees at 32 different universities.

Engineering degrees come in a wide variety of choice and cross all science subjects. Interesting choices for students last year were Flood and Coastal Engineering and Renewable Energy Engineering. In addition, we had students go onto study Architecture and related construction degrees.

Popular universities included Bristol, Loughborough, Swansea and Bath. In addition, students went onto study Engineering at Imperial in London and Cambridge.

Should I study Engineering at degree level?

There are a wide range of engineering options that students can choose between. Options include foundation and placement years, and industrial experience. You will have about 20 hours of teaching each week, mainly lectures, but also tutorials and laboratory experiments. Contact time is higher studying science degrees due to lab work. Modules might include Thermofluids, Engineering concepts, Materials and manufacture, Dynamics and control, Systems modelling.

Types of Engineering degree

There are a huge range of interesting engineering options including:

  • Mechanical
  • Electrical
  • Software
  • Civil
  • Aerospace
  • Automotive
  • Architectural
  • Robotics
  • Biochemical

and many more.

Entry Requirements

A-levels (or equivalent) usually required a mix of Sciences, Computing and Maths. It is wort exploring degree entry requirements of thinking of taking a particular route.

Top Universities for Engineering

Bristol, Cambridge, Oxford, Imperial, Durham
Cardiff, Bristol UWE, Liverpool John Moores – all very high student satisfaction scores
London South Bank, Bournemouth, Exeter- all with top graduate prospects

Many of our students choose a combined degree - applications from our students have included:

  • Architectural Engineering (Year in Industry)
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Mechatronic and Robotic Engineering with a Year in Industry
  • Product Design Engineering with Foundation Year

Example entry requirements (please check):

A-Level/BTEC equivalents:

Exeter/AAB
UEA/BBB
York/BBC

Why not try a foundation degree or higher apprenticeship?
For example: Engineering Degree Apprentice Siemens

Some examples of Engineering-related degrees that our BHASVIC students have gone onto study in the past few years are:

  • Aeronautics and Astronautics
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Aeronautical Engineering
  • Aeronautics and Astronautics
  • Aeronautics and Astronautics / Spacecraft Engineering
  • Architectural Engineering
  • Architecture and Environmental Engineering
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Architectural Engineering
  • Architectural Engineering (Year in Industry)
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Chemical and Nuclear Engineering
  • Civil Engineering
  • Civil Engineering (Year in Industry)
  • Design Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering with Innovation
  • Electronic and Information Engineering
  • Electronic Engineering with Artificial Intelligence
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering with Robotics
  • Electronic and Computer Engineering
  • Engineering Mathematics
  • Engineering Geology and Geotechnics
  • Flood and Coastal Engineering
  • General Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering with a Year in Industry
  • Mechanical Engineering with Robotics
  • Mechanical Engineering/Mechatronics
  • Mechanical Engineering / Naval Engineering with Industrial Placement Year
  • Mechatronic and Robotic Engineering with a Year in Industry
  • Robotics Engineering
  • Renewable Energy Engineering

Engineers use their analytical skills and aptitude working with ground-breaking technologies to enhance people's lives.

  • Building services engineer
  • Energy Engineer
  • Network Engineer
  • Environmental consultant
  • Sustainability consultant
  • Broadcast engineer
  • Electrical engineer
  • Electronics engineer
  • Project manager
  • Product/process development scientist

Career Prospects

Engineers are in demand across multiple industries, particularly in the oil industry, and in the car industry, in design and manufacturing. Jobs are all around the country, with Scotland and the Southeast the most likely places for a new mechanical engineer to find work.

An engineering degree will help you gain specific technical training, knowledge of issues and the ability to plan, prioritise and solve problems under pressure and to deadlines. These skills are in demand from employers in the oil and gas industry, aerospace, car industry, electricity generators and suppliers, technical consultancy, defence and the Armed Forces.

Local Market Information

Network Rail
Network Rail are taking applications for their apprenticeship scheme production. 50% are based in London and the Southeast, many of which work on a freelance basis.

Examples of apprenticeships and opportunities include:

  • Field Engineer UK Govt
  • Unified Communications Technician Apprentice
  • UK Government Degree Apprenticeship in Electronic Engineering

We have an excellent careers page and careers advisors who are available for appointments.