What is national 5 physics and why would it benefit me to have a tutor?

National 5 physics consists of 3 units dynamics & space, electricity & energy, and waves & radiation. All of these subjects give you a better understanding of the world you live in as well as what you can’t see. In this post, we will go over what each of these topics involves and give you a basic understanding of what you might come across in your studies. If you need more information about getting a tutor please get in touch.

Dynamics

In this area, the topics covered are: vectors and scalars; velocity–time graphs; acceleration;
Newton’s laws; energy; projectile motion.

Vectors and Scalars for National 5 Exams

The motion of objects can be described by simple words. Even someone without a knowledge in physics has words to describe moving objects. Words and phrases like going faststoppedslowing downspeeding up, and turning provide a sufficient vocabulary for describing the motion of objects. In physics, we use these words and many more. We will be expanding upon this vocabulary list with words such as distancedisplacementspeedvelocity, and acceleration. As we will soon see, these words are associated with mathematical quantities that have strict definitions. The mathematical quantities that are used to describe the motion of objects can be divided into two categories. The quantity is either a vector or a scalar. These two categories can be distinguished from one another by their distinct definitions:

  • Scalars are quantities that are fully described by a magnitude (or numerical value) alone.
  • Vectors are quantities that are fully described by both a magnitude and a direction.

Velocity and Time for National 5

Velocity is a vector quantity that refers to “the rate at which an object changes its position.” Velocity-time graphs are used to describe the motion of objects which are moving in a straight line. They can be used to show acceleration and to work out displacement. You can see in the graph below how this is represented, this is a velocity-time graph of an object moving in a straight line due North.

National 5 physics

You can find out more at BBC Bitesite. National 5 physics is an important part of the exams, so make sure you read up in this area.

Space

In this area, the topics covered are space exploration; cosmology. Space exploration is an important part of many areas of science and technology including satellites and GPS. There are tonnes of risks including radiation, extreme temperatures and high-speed impacts. This part of the National 5 is very interesting to many, but it’s also important to get this right to score the highest grades.

In this subject, you will learn the basics of the Universe, galaxies, the sun and its planets and many more. This topic takes into consideration the dangers of space travel, the challenges of moving around in space and how weight and mass is measured. If you need more information about getting a tutor please get in touch.

Electricity

In this area, the topics covered are: electrical charge carriers; the potential difference (voltage);
Ohm’s law; practical electrical and electronic circuits; electrical power.

Electrical charge carriers

Electrical current is electrical charge transferred in a particular time. These three properties can be calculated using the equation Q=It. Current can be a.c. or d.c.

Potential differences (voltage)

Potential difference is the difference in the amount of energy that charge carriers have between two points in a circuit.

Potential difference (p.d.) is measured in volts (V) and is also called voltage. The energy is transferred to the electrical components in a circuit when the charge carriers pass through them. We use a voltmeter to measure potential difference (or voltage).

Potential Difference formula:** V = I x R**

The potential difference (which is the same as voltage) is equal to the amount of current multiplied by the resistance. A potential difference of one Volt is equal to one Joule of energy being used by one Coulomb of charge when it flows between two points in a circuit.

Properties of matter | National 5 revision for physics

In this area, the topics covered are: specific heat capacity; specific latent heat; gas laws and the kinetic model.

Specific heat capacity

When an object is heated, the change in temperature is related to energy, mass and the specific heat capacity of the material it is made of. Heat is a form of energy. It is measured in Joules.

Specific latent heat

Different materials have different latent heats. They require different amounts of energy to change state between solid, liquid and gas.

The three states of matter are solid, liquid and gas. When ice (a solid) melts, it turns into water (a liquid); this is called fusion. When water (a liquid) boils, it turns into steam (a gas); this is called vaporisation.

Gas laws and the kinetic model

The behavior of gases is described in terms of the kinetic theory, which considers the motion of molecules in the gas. The gas law links pressure, volume, and temperature.

Waves | National 5 revision for physics

In this area, the topics covered are: wave parameters and behaviours; electromagnetic spectrum; refraction of light.

Wave parameters and behaviours

A wave is a regular disturbance that carries energy but has no mass. Some waves require a medium to travel through (e.g. water waves) others, like light, can travel through a vacuum.

In transverse waves, the particles of the medium vibrate at right angles to the direction of energy transfer. Water, light, radio and television waves are transverse. In longitudinal waves, the particles of the medium vibrate in the same direction as the energy transfer. Sound waves are longitudinal waves.

Refraction of light

Refraction occurs when waves travel from one material to another. For light, this can change both the speed and direction. Refraction of light takes place in many places, including lenses and prisms.

Radiation

In this area, the topic covered is nuclear radiation.

Nuclear radiation

Alpha, Beta and Gamma radiation all have different properties and effects. Radiation can have destructive effects but can also be used in medicine, industry and electricity generation. In this subject we learn about all areas of radiations from the Atom, to Ionisation, to all the different types of radiation and many more. This is s a large area of the National 5 so it’s important to look into this area well. 

National 5 physics

National 5 Physics Guide to Past Papers and Solutions

Using past papers is a vital part of revising. It allows you to get a feel of the type of questions you will be facing as well as letting you test yourself to see how well you would do in a real exam. Click on the links below to download some past papers for the National 5 Physics. If you need more information about getting a tutor please get in touch.

National 5 Physics – all – 2019

2019 Physics – National 5 – Finalised Marking Instructions

National 5 Physics – all – 2018

2018 Physics – National 5 – Finalised Marking Instructions

National 5 Physics – all – 2017

2017 Physics – National 5 – Finalised Marking Instructions

National 5 Physics – all – 2016

2016 Physics – National 5 – Finalised Marking Instructions

Physics: general marking principles for National 5 Past Papers

Dowload Guide

Information from this blog has come from BBC Bitesize

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