Isaac Physics is a Department for Education project at the University of
Cambridge, designed to offer support and activities in physics problem-solving
to teachers and students transitioning from GCSE (Y11), through to Sixth Form
(Y12 & 13), through to university, by combining an online study tool (MOOC) with face-to-face
events at partner schools and institutions across the UK.
Study with Isaac Physics takes many forms
Teachers can direct students to resources at several levels.
- On-line problem solving, learning the basic skills of interpreting a
problem, drawing diagrams with the essential physics assembled on it (eg
forces, vectors, . . .), deciding what physical principles to use, applying
multi-step analysis and mathematics, and interpreting your result. This is
essential preparation for STEM at top universities. 5 stages of hints are
provided for questions that in level span the end of GCSE to the first year at
e.g. Cambridge University. Concepts are explained in dedicated sheets.
Mathematics exercises to the end of A2 level are also provided. Can be used
for core student activities (including the setting of homework or challenging
question sets selected by the teacher from Isaac Physics, or taken over from
pre-defined sets), or for extension. Results returned to teacher if
requested. Should save considerable teacher labour!
- Preparation for core AS and A2 physics exams - Isaac Physics Skills:
Developing Mastery of Essential Pre-University Physics is supplied at
cost price. Marking is done by isaacphysics.org and results supplied to
students (and teachers if they set the work from this skills book). The book
is written by two highly experienced, senior school physics teachers, Anton
Machacek and Jennifer Crowter. Again, highly labour-saving for teachers!
- Regional face to face problem solving classes for students are held in
core areas, for instance vectors, exponentials, calculus in physics. These
give unusual problems in areas accessible to students, requiring some thought
- for students aiming at a good B to A* at A2 level.
- Teacher CPD events - either day or residential. Free to attend. Some
cover costs can be met.
- Preparation for university applications - core maths skills that are
required at top universities for STEM are provided in sets, backed up by
easier questions for guidance. In any event, doing challenging physics
problems will aid applications.