Tips!

Here I will post a few tips and hints to remember when answering SQA N5 Papers. Hopefully they’ll be quick, snappy and memorable. You’ve got the whole of the Scottish Physics Teachers’ Community Wisdom Below!

  1. Obviously you know- no secs in Physics, just stick to unit symbols and save all the problems of spelling.
  2. Neutrons don’t carry/have (net) charge so cannot be accelerated/guided/ deflected by magnetic fields.
  3. Remember: SIG FIG, your final answer should be rounded up to the same number of significant figures as the LEAST significant measurement.
  4. Make sure you see the words “end of question paper”. Don’t assume you’ve got to the end and there are no questions on the very last page!
  5. “Show” questions – means show correct formula, working and numerical answer stated as given in the question.
  6. Don’t leave anything blank! If you really don’t know, give it a go – you never know.
  7. The questions in the exam sections (MC and then extended answers) are in approximately the same order as the equation sheet.
  8. LIST: given numbers with the correct symbols before doing a calculation. Or as we say IESSUU (information, Equation, Substitution, Solution, Units and Underline)
  9. Substitute then rearrange.
  10. Read all of the question, especially that bit you skipped over at the start.
  11. Don’t forget units! It’s now worth at least 33% of a calculation!
  12. This will do for now more to come as they arise……Check out the past paper marking instructions for do’s and  don’ts- its full of them in that second column!

Good Advice

This is a great little document from the Science Faculty at LA- whom I have just discovered pinched it from Mr Bowled Over formerly of the Physics Dept. It applies to all your subjects.

Revision Guidelines

  • Take responsibility for your own learning, and make sure that you give yourself every chance of success.
  • Analyse your prelim and identify Areas for Improvement
  • Use past papers along with the SQA website – see “marking instructions”, your teacher will show you how.
  • Attend after-school Supported Study regularly (check with staff in advance as changes may have to be made to accommodate staff meetings.)
  • Consult teachers at interval/lunchtime, perhaps to get help with homework or to borrow other resources, of which we have many.
  • Refer to Syllabus/Content Statements/Arrangements Document/“Need to Know” sheets.
  • Practise with “Basic Knowledge” or “Learning Outcome” Question Booklets.
  • Make/obtain and use Flash Cards.
  • Try mind-mapping/spider diagrams.
  • Generate own short notes/Summarise
  • Familiarise with equations on the Relationships Sheet and the Data Sheet on the exam paper and add your own notes to these.
  • Learn mnemonics suggested by your teacher or create new ones to help you remember chunks of information. (ROYGBIV – Richard of York Gave Battle in Vain, RMIVUXG but don’t overdo it)
  • Practice using revision materials on here.
  • Write and record mp3 files and then listen to these as often as you listen to your music.
  • Use Flash Learning.
  • Plan weekly Revision timetable.
  • Post-it notes in your room/house (better ask first!)
  • Enlist a ‘victim’ to test your knowledge at home.
  • Teaching is the most effective method of learning – teach the dog or a teddy (he won’t fall asleep).

Remember to revise at the first opportunity after any lesson, asking yourself;

  • What were the main learning objectives of the lesson?
  • Do I understand these?
  • What can I do to improve?

Also, plan your revision and do not put things off to tomorrow when you could fix them today.

Keep a note of areas you are finding challenging and bring them with you to after school classes for targeted help and support.

Hope you find this useful and thanks to the Chemists and Mr Bowles.

Revision Calendar

It is important that you realise that this year will go really quickly. As a part of your life it seems a long time, but trust me, it will go quicker than you can possibly imagine. That is why it is important to realise how little time you have to cover the whole course and revise it.

For people in D&G I’ve made a D&G Calendar. For other Regions you’ll just need to adjust your holiday dates. From the first Monday you return to school there will be only 146 teaching days until Study Leave. Now if you think that you only get 4 periods a week, on 3 days per week that is about a maximum of 88 times I’ll see you over the year. You can start ticking them off if you dislike me that much. Take off all those days when you will be having trips, meetings, be at Sporting Events, doing prelims; and the time to complete the course begins to look less plausible! We also have to fit in an Assignment.

I would therefore ask any student studying any subject not to waste any time in class and get as organised as possible. That means get into class, get out your stuff, and get going straight away. If there is a distraction then review your work, answer questions etc. Don’t waste a second!

Revision plan

Click on the link above (Revision plan). This takes you to an EXCEL spreadsheet. I can add a pdf file if some of you can’t open this. Revision isn’t just about LEARNING the work. What will take more of your time are the other bits!

The steps to revising are:

  1. CHECK YOU HAVE ALL THE NOTES, CONTENT AND WORK YOU NEED

  2. UNDERSTAND THE WORK, DOES IT MAKE SENSE?

  3. LEARN THE WORK.

You can and should be doing step one throughout the course. The better prepared you are as you go along the less time at the end of the course you will need for revision. Likewise with step 2. If you make sure you’ve fully understood each part of the work, then even if you’ve forgotten it, it should be easier to understand and grasp the second time around. If you pass on it and hope it will go away as you move through the course you’ll begin to have a fear of this section of the course and it will be harder to understand.

So how do you use the Revision Plan?

  • This can be used for just one subject but I think it puts it into perspective when you put all your calendar in one place. There are probably apps that will do the same thing, but I’m not there yet!
  • Mark in the dates and times of Exams (whether prelims or final exams). I’ve put in the Physics Exam Date for you and a counter has been added to the N5 Home Page. I’d check this often just to remind you how far we are through the course.
  • Shade in the dates and times of commitments, such as parties, trips away, days off (birthdays when you’ll have all those presents to open) etc.
  • Make a list of topics to cover for each subject; the Physics one is done for you. But remember revision is about CHECKING, UNDERSTANDING and LEARNING so all three of those have to be allocated time.
  • Calculate how many hours you have available and how much time you will allocate to each subject and each topic within that subject.
  • Decide on the order in which to tackle your subjects. Don’t tackle the easy subjects first as you’ll never get on to the harder ones! It is best to start revising the hard subjects and topics as these will take you more time to understand and learn
  • Draft your revision timetable.
  • Leave one or two revision slots free each week for extra revision or difficult topics.
  • BE SURE TO LEAVE YOURSELF SOME TIME FOR REST AND FUN ACTIVITIES including being healthy.
  • Don’t spend so long producing a beautiful revision timetable so that there is not enough time to revise.

I’ll see if the Physics Jewel can make one up!

 

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Revise your Units- Unit Dominoes

unit dominoes

unit dominoes

Here is a little document I made up when we had foreign students in an Intermediate 2 class. It was not as successful with the foreign students as with those studying in Scotland as there was confusing over what they were asked to do and I assumed (obviously wrongly) that the symbols were universal.

I think you’ll find these fine, providing you:

  • SET YOUR PRINTER TO LANDSCAPE
  • PRINT 16 PAGES PER A4 SHEET
  • CUT THEM OUT ONE DEEP AND TWO ACROSS as shown below
Cut out all dominoes like this to make 30 dominoes in two different games

If you don’t have a printer just copy them out on to paper or card!

This will give you 8 dominoes per sheet and two different sets. One if for quantity and symbol and one is for quantity and unit.

I’ve found it best to print on different colour card so that you don’t try muddling them up. If you do it correctly you should end back at the start, or with a quantity that has no unit (work out which one that is)

I recommend you working against the clock, so that you can increase your speed as you practice. It will make revision at least a little more interesting. Or practice with your friends.

“Six months from Now, you’ll have wished you started revising today”

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Command words in exam papers!

Here is a table showing some of the command words that are used in the exams. I will give examples later. It is important to answer the correct command word in the right way or you are likely to not be awarded marks.

Do go through past paper questions and get examples of the different command words and then look at the marking instructions and see how they are answered.

response to questions that ask candidates to:Candidates must:
calculateyou must provide a number from given facts, figures or information. It is not expected that this can just be known from information.
compareThis requires you to describe the similarities and/or differences between things, not just write about one. If you are asked to ‘compare x with y ’, you need to write down something about x compared to y , using comparative words such as ‘better, ‘more than’, ‘less than’, ‘quicker’, ‘more expensive’, ‘on the other hand.’
describe,you must provide a statement or structure of characteristics and/or features;
determine or calculate, you must determine a number from given facts, figures or information; You should use numbers given in the question to work out the answer. You should always show your working, as it may be possible for the examiner to award some marks for the method even if the final answer is wrong. Always give the units as the final mark is for the answer and unit.
estimate,you must determine an approximate value for something;
explain,you must relate cause and effect and/or make relationships between things clear. Students should make something clear, or state the reasons for something happening. The answer should not be a simple list of reasons. This means that points in the answer must be linked coherently and logically.All of the stages/steps in an explanation must be included to gain full marks.
evaluate,you must make a judgement based on what you know or have been given, or determine the value of something.
identify, name, give, or state, you need only name or present in brief form. Only a short answer is required, not an explanation or a description. Often it can be answered with a single word, phrase or sentence. If the question asks you to state, give, or write down one (or two etc) examples, you should write down only the specified number of answers, or you may not be given the mark for some correct examples given.
justify, you must give reasons to support their suggestions or conclusions, e.g. this might be by identifying an appropriate relationship and the effect of changing variables;
outline,you must provide a brief summary of the content. It should be more detailed than naming, but not as detailed as describe.
predict, you must suggest what may happen based on available information;
show that,you must use physics [and mathematics] to prove something e.g. a given value – All steps, including the stated answer , must be shown;
suggest, you must apply your knowledge and understanding of physics to a new situation. A number of responses are acceptable: marks will be awarded for any suggestions that are supported by knowledge and understanding of physics.
use your knowledge of physics or aspect of physics to comment on,you must apply your skills, knowledge and understanding to respond appropriately to the problem/situation presented (for example by making a statement of principle(s) involved and/or a relationship or equation, and applying these to respond to the problem/situation). you will be rewarded for the breadth and/or depth of their conceptual understanding.
Use the information in the passage/ diagram/ graph/ table to…The answer must be based on the information given in the question. Unless the information given in the question is used, no marks can be given, even if what you write is correct.

On a similar matter, it is important that you don’t use the wrong adverb for a quantity.
Don’t use the terms
Quicker, slower, faster
for words such as time, acceleration, velocity.
Use terms
longer, shorter for time
greater or less for acceleration and velocity.

To say quicker time, you are talking about relativity! You want to say that the time will be less to do the same action.

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Analysis

Here are some links to past papers to give you some practice for your N5 exam. The HGMP stands for Hodder and Gibson Model Papers, the LL stands for Leicke and Leicke

N5 Exam paper analysis

Multiple Choice2013 SQA SPC2014 SQA N52015 SQA N52016 SQA N5HGMP1HGMP2HGMP3LL PPALL PPBLL PPC 
Electricity and Energy
Conservation of Energy341611
Electrical Charge Carriers and Electric Fields221,21,2,3212
Potential Difference (Voltage)11233
Practical Electrical and Electronic Circuits52, 331,3,42,4,53,45,62
Ohm’s Law41144,53,44,6
Electrical Power43555
Specific Heat Capacity6
Gas Laws and the Kinetic model5, 6, 7 8, 6, 7 5, 65,6,76,7,867,86,7,87,8
Waves and Radiation
Wave Parameters and Behaviours10, 11878,9,1010,11,137,89,10,119,109,10
EM Spectrum9989891111
Light12, 13 1114912,131212,13
Nuclear Radiation14, 1510, 11, 12, 139,10,11,12,1312,1312,1510,11,12,13,1410,11,12,13,1414,1513,14,1514,15
Dynamics and Space
Velocity and Displacement16, 1714, 151414161515,1616,1716,1716
Velocity - Time graphs181517171818
Acceleration151917
Newton’s Laws19,2016, 1716,17,181718,2016,17,181819,2019,2018,20
Projectile Motion18191919
Space Exploration19, 20197
Cosmology1819,20202020

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Past Paper Analysis

When completing a past paper or prelim paper it is important for you to do an analysis of where you went wrong. Use the list below to see where your weak areas are and start working on them, but don’t forget all the other areas too.

MistakeNo. of ocassionsContent statement
Wrong units
Did not understand question
Did not read question carefully
Wrong maths
No summary of question
No units
Wrong Formula
Had not revised this section
Wrong substitution
Wrong value for quantity
lack of working
changing units wrongly
significant figures
m/c wrongly recorded
no direction on vectors
failure to spot importance of vectors
leaving out a question
wrongly transcribing a number
poor/ missing explanation
wrong facts
wrong diagrams
not getting data from data sheet
powers of 10/ prefixes/sci-notation
ran out of time
lack of information esp on diagram
wrongly rearranging formulae
not using data book/ making up eq!
selecting the wrong equation
prefixes

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Revision points

Although this table refers to points from the Intermediate 2 Physics paper they are exactly the same points that can arise for N5 & H so take note! Get some of these points on your revision timetable for Physics.

Advice to centres for preparation of future candidates
• Candidates should be encouraged to take more care in reading questions thoroughly and ensuring that the instructions in questions are followed precisely.
• Candidates should be aware that they may need to state or derive expressions which are not listed in the Data Booklet; for example, the component of weight of an object down a slope.
• Candidates should be encouraged to present their numerical analyses in a clear and structured way – markers need to be able to follow the logic in their answers.
• Most candidates require more practice at taking account of the vector nature of velocity and impulse in numerical calculations. A wrong sign used for these in a substitution is wrong physics.
• Where a question asks candidates to “show” that a certain value is correct, they should write down any relevant formula followed by correct substitutions and calculations in a clear and structured way.
• The number of marks allocated to each part of a question should be used by candidates as a guide to the extent of calculation or explanation required.
• There is a need for candidates to work on developing a deeper understanding of Physics at Higher level beyond having the ability to answer numerically based questions.
• Most candidates need more practice in writing descriptions and explanations. They need to be more careful in the precision of the language used in their descriptions and explanations. For example, saying that an increase in temperature causes “molecules to collide more” means very little. A more precise description would be “molecules collide with the container walls harder and more frequently”.
• Candidates should be encouraged to study the content statements for the course. They must be able to give definitions of terms such as potential difference, irradiance etc.
• Candidates should label the origin and axes on sketch graphs.
• When a candidate makes two (or more) attempts for the same part of a question, they must score through the part(s) which they do not wish to be considered by the marker.
• Candidates should practise using all the prefixes listed in the content statements for the course.
• Candidates need to practise transferring knowledge from one Unit of the course to another; for example, the charge on a proton met in the Unit on Radiations and Matter may be used in a question based on the Unit on Electricity and Electronics.
• Many candidates need to develop a better understanding of how to quote “an appropriate number of significant figures” in final answers.
Advice to centres for preparation of future candidates (int 2)
Apart from the specific topics outlined under the heading “Areas which candidates found demanding” it is recommended that the following receive attention:
Units and prefixes
Scientific notation
Explanations of Physics phenomena – in general, descriptive questions were very much less well done than numerical questions. For example, many candidates could correctly calculate potential and kinetic energy but could give no sensible explanation as to why one was bigger than the other.
It is recommended that attention should be given to drawing conclusions in Problem Solving situations.

Workshop 2017 for SQA

National 5 Workshop for Physics Wednesday 17th May (the morning of the exam) P1, 2 and 4

This is the document that we will be going through. We wont have time to go through all the material, so you might want to use this as part of your revision. Do start your revision early and be sure to look over some of the ways to revise, I’ll get a link when I can locate it! It the Higher Revision section of the site there is a link to type of learner. Try the learning styles it will help you revise.

National 5 Workshop Agenda

N5 WORKSHOP booklet 2017

N5 WORKSHOP booklet 2017

Click on the link below to go directly to the SQA website where you can make a personalised exam timetable.

https://www.sqa.org.uk/sqa/1439.html

If you’re less computer savy, or a parent he is the paper copy for this year

Exam_Timetable_2017.pdf


Nat 5 open ended questions booklet

N5 Open ended Questions

N5 DS WR Past Paper Booklet

N45 Electronics 20Q

N45 Electricity 1 20Q

N45 Electricity 2 20Q

Nat 5 Dyn 3 Skills and Open ended

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Revision Test

Here are the test questions we attempted  today. I will try to upload the answers and correct the mistakes a.s.a.p.

Many are from SG papers, with the others coming from Int 2 materials.

National 5 Revision Questions

For Friday 6th January tackle any of the questions below

ALL CREDIT PAPERS

Paper Questions
2001 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 11c, 12, 13
2002 3, 4 (some), 9, 12
2003 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 9, 13, 14
2004 1 a, b, 7, 11, 13, 14, 15
2005 1, 4, 7, 8, 13
2006 2, 3, 4b, 5, 6, 11, 13
2007 1, 2, 4b, 5, 6, 7, 8, 14
2008 2, 3, 4, 5, 6b, 7, 11, 12

Check the answers from Mr Mackenzie Physics- a few of you can log on to the computers on for people to check answers. SHUT DOWN at the end of the period.

SG Ph General soln 00-04

SG Ph Credit soln 00-04

I’ll try to upload the answers but I wont have access to the computer. Here is what I’ve managed to add just now. I’ll get it done asap

HEALTH CREDIT TEST ANSWERS

SG Credit Electronics Nov 2009

SG Gen Electronic Nov 2009

SG mid topic electricity general test final

Revision Help

What Type of Learner are You?

Before you start a revision plan check out what kind of learner you are. This will then direct you to the best way for YOU to revise. Find your learning style

Once you’ve found your learning style take a look at the advice in the documents below.     How to work to your learning style .   learning style

study skills , study skills here is a powerpoint and pdf document of the power point to give some tips on revision.

Revision Documents

Nat 5 – Physical Quantities – Quantities and equations used at Nat 5

N5 WORKSHOP booklet 2017– Some hints to revision and relaxation ready prepared for your exam on 17th May 2017

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