# How to Answer 'Assess' Physics Questions | HSC Physics Key Verb Series Part 3

Find 'assess' Physic question types challenging and intimidating? Learn how to answer 'assess' physics questions in Physics exams effectively with Learnable's IDEA Framework TM

## Answering ‘assess’ long response questions

Students find ‘assess’ Physics questions challenging and intimidating. Some students struggle to provide relevant and concise response while others just fail to answer the question specifically.

‘How to answer ‘assess’ Physics questions’ is a comprehensive guide for students on how to develop a structured scientific response that is logical, sequential, relevant, concise and specific.

## Types of ‘assess’ long response questions in the HSC Physics Exam

Assess physics questions are considered one of the most difficult questions to gain full marks for.

In the 2019 HSC Physics Exam, there was only one assess question and was considered the most difficult question.

There are two main types of assess questions asked in HSC Physics exams:

1. Assess the accuracy of a prediction or a statement
2. Assess the impact of knowledge/applications on ……

### Examples of ‘assess’ questions in Physics exams

Marks allocated for an ‘assess’ long response question can vary from 4 to 6 marks. Examples of assess questions with different marks are listed below.

 Question Marks Question 1 (2019 HSC Q31b)A student suspends an electric ceiling fan from a spring balance. The fan is switched on, reaching a maximum rotational velocity after ten seconds. The student predicted that the current through the fan’s motor would vary as shown on the graph. Assess the accuracy of the student’s prediction. 4 Question 2A student wishes to repeat some of Galileo’s experiments on projectile motion. He set up a ramp on a table of height $H$ and rolled a ball down the ramp, such that it rolled horizontally off the table. When he released the ball from a height $h_1$ up the ramp, the ball landed a distance $x_1$ from the edge of the table. In Galileo’s experiments, he released the ball from different heights on the ramp. The student was not familiar with the result and predicted that: “Releasing the ball from higher up the ramp will make it land on the floor further away from the table. Hence, it will take more time to reach the floor once it leaves the table.”Assess the accuracy of this prediction. 5 Question 3 (2015 HSC Q34e)Assess the impact of THREE advances in knowledge about particles and forces on the understanding of the atomic nucleus. 6

## What is the process for answering ‘assess’ Physics questions?

To answer ‘assess’ physics questions, you must first understand the meaning of the verb, ‘assess’.

The NSW Education Standards Authority defines ‘Assess’ as “making a judgement of value, quality, outcomes, results or size.”

When answering ‘assess’ questions, students are required to make an informed judgement explicitly/implicitly.

Informed judgement refers to making a considered decision based on knowledge or facts.

-The Oxford English Online Dictionary

One of the ways to make an informed judgement is using Learnable’s IDEA FrameworkTM  to construct a concise, relevant and logical response.

### Learnable’s IDEA FrameworkTM

The IDEA Framework helps you structure your answer easily and meet the marking criteria for ‘assess’ questions. View the 4 step process outlined in the table below:

 Step IDEA Framework Detail 1 Information Identify each part of the information for assessment. 2 Decision State the accuracy of each part of the information as being accurate or inaccurate. 3 Evidence Provide supporting evidence for your decisions. The evidence may require you to:Make a reference to a law or principle of physics orWeigh the pros and cons or positive and negative impacts 4 Assessment Make your informed judgement by stating whether the overall information is accurate, partially accurate or inaccurate.

## Sample ‘assess’ Physics questions and answers using the IDEA FrameworkTM

Let’s apply Learnable’s IDEA Framework to answer the two types of ‘assess’ Physics questions.

1. Assess the accuracy of {……………….}
2. Assess the impact of {……………….}

### Question 1 (5 Marks)

A student wishes to repeat some of Galileo’s experiments on projectile motion. He set up a ramp on a table of height $H$ and rolled a ball down the ramp, such that it rolled horizontally off the table. When he released the ball from a height $h_1$ up the ramp, the ball landed a distance $x_1$ from the edge of the table.

In Galileo’s experiments, he released the ball from different heights on the ramp. The student was not familiar with the result and predicted that:

Releasing the ball from higher up the ramp will make it land on the floor further away from the table. Hence, it will take more time to reach the floor once it leaves the table.”

Assess the accuracy of this prediction.

### Solution

Step 1: Identify each part of the information for assessment.

 Step IDEA Framework Detail 1 Information Releasing the ball from higher up the ramp will make the ball land on the floor further way from the table.As the horizontal distance travelled increases, so does the time taken for an object to fall.

Step 2: State the accuracy of each part of the information as being accurate or inaccurate.

 Step IDEA Framework Detail 1 Information Releasing the ball from higher up the ramp will make the ball land on the floor further way from the table.As the horizontal distance travelled increases, so does the time taken for an object to fall. 2 Decision The time taken for object to fall part of the prediction is correctThe horizontal distance part of the prediction is not correct.

Step 3 & 4: Provide supporting evidence for your decisions and make your informed judgement by stating whether the overall information is accurate, partially accurate or inaccurate.

 Step IDEA Framework Detail 1 Information Releasing the ball from higher up the ramp will make the ball land on the floor further way from the table.As the horizontal distance travelled increases, so does the time taken for an object to fall. 2 Decision The time taken for object to fall part of the prediction is correctThe horizontal distance part of the prediction is not correct. 3 Evidence Releasing the ball from a higher height will increase the gravitational potential energy of the ball. As more gravitational potential energy is converted to kinetic energy, its launch horizontal velocity ${(u_x)}$ will be greater. As the range of the ball is proportional to its horizontal velocity ${(\Delta x = u_xt)}$, a higher launch horizontal velocity will lead to a higher range. This does not increase the time of flight.As the ball rolls horizontally off the table, its launch vertical velocity ${(u_y})$ is zero. Additionally, the vertical distance travelled after launch is the same. Hence, the time of flight remains unchanged. 4 Assessment Hence the student’s prediction is partially accurate.

Step 5: Construct a concise, relevant and logical response.

A sample response to the question using the IDEA Framework is shown below.

Releasing the ball from a higher height will increase the gravitational potential energy of the ball. As more gravitational potential energy is converted to kinetic energy, the ball’s launch horizontal velocity ${(u_x)}$ will be greater. As the range of the ball is proportional to its horizontal velocity ${(\Delta x = u_xt)}$, a higher launch horizontal velocity will increase the ball’s range. Therefore, the first part of the student’s prediction is correct. However, the ball’s vertical motion has not changed. As it rolls horizontally off the table, its launch vertical velocity ${(u_y)}$ remains at zero, and the vertical distance it travels after launch remains constant. Hence, the time of flight remains unchanged. Therefore, the second part of the student’s prediction is incorrect. Hence the student’s prediction is partially correct.

Don’t forget to include the overall assessment.