The most important part of your depth study assessment is deciding on the idea and topic for your Physics depth study. This is especially challenging if you are given a depth study at the start of Year 12 since you haven’t been exposed to the concept and topics covered in the HSC Physics syllabus.
In this article, we discuss ideas and topics for:
For each Physics depth study type, we’ve outlined topics under each module. You might be interested in exploring these for your assessment.
Remember there are five different depth study types:
To understand the different types, read the article Physics depth study | Comprehensive Guide.
There are 3 different ideas suggested by NESA for the ‘Practical Investigation‘ Physics depth study type:
Each of these ideas follows its own specific scientific method. The methods for testing a device and testing a claim differ to the method for designing and conducting experiments.
To avoid losing marks, you must adhere to the scientific method relevant to your practical investigation idea.
The scientific method for Design and conduct experiments is shown below.
Examples of some practical investigations are listed below.
|Advanced Mechanics||Design and conduct experiments||Projectile Motion: Validate the relationship between the height of release (h) of a projectile and the range in projectile motion, and determine the fixed height of a table (H).|
Projectile Motion: Test the claim that the effect of air resistance in projectile motion is small and can be ignored.
|Electromagnetism||Design and conduct experiments|
Test a device
|The Motor Effect: Validate the relationship between the force between two parallel current carrying conductors and the currents, and hence determine the permittivity or permeability of free space.|
Transformer: Determine the efficiency of a transformer
|The Nature of Light||Test a claim||Wave Model of Light: Determine the wavelength of the light output of a laser, and compare this with the claimed wavelength and uncertainty|
|From the Universe to the Atom||Design and conduct experiments||Quantum Mechanical Nature of the Atom: Using the visible hydrogen spectrum, determine the Rydberg constant for hydrogen.|
Related: ‘How to plan and conduct Physics practical investigations‘.
There are 9 different ideas suggested by NESA for the ‘Secondary-sourced Investigation‘ Physics depth study type:
The video shown below is a documentary about Einstein and his work.
The article shown below is a literature review in the field of astrophysics, reviewing the science of the Big Bang and the expansion of the universe.
The article shown below is a scientific paper published in a peer-reviewed journal.
The article shown below is an example of historical essay. It discusses the conflict between AC and DC electricity distribution systems.
The picture shown below is a poster summarising the elementary particles and their interactions in The Standard Model of Physics, as well as unsolved mysteries.
Examples of some secondary-sourced investigations are listed below.
|Advanced Mechanics||Make a documentary or media report||Motion in Gravitational Fields: Create a documentary or media report on current endeavours to execute missions to Mars.|
|Electromagnetism||Write an essay – historical||Electromagnetic induction: Discuss the historical competition between AC and DC electrical generation and transmission systems.|
|The Nature of Light||Create a visual presentation OR|
Write an essay
|Light and Special Relativity: Create a visual presentation to describe why Newton’s Universal Law of Gravitation has been replaced by General Relativity as the preferred theory of gravity.|
|From the Universe to the Atom||Develop an evidence-based argument||Origins of the Elements: Write a detailed explanation of the empirical evidence that proves the expansion of the Universe.|
There are 3 different ideas suggested by NESA for the ‘Data Analysis‘ Physics depth study type:
Examples of some data analysis are listed below.
|Advanced Mechanics||Data analysis from a variety of sources||Circular Motion: Analyse data on the torque production of electric motors used in research grade solar powered vehicles and autonomous electric racing vehicles.|
|Electromagnetism||Data analysis from a variety of sources||Electromagnetic Induction: Collect and analyse data on major high voltage electrical transmission systems around Australia, and determine a representative average of power lost as heat.|
|The Nature of Light||Construction and analysis of graphs/tables||Light (Wave Model): Calculate the slit separation distance of a diffraction grating using different wavelengths of laser.|
|From the Universe to the Atom||Construction and analysis of graphs/tables||Origins of the Elements: Discover the luminosity-period relationship of Cepheid variables.|
Related: How to perform data analysis
There are 3 different ideas suggested by NESA for the ‘Creating‘ Physics depth study type:
Examples of some Creating are listed below.
|Advanced Mechanics||Design and invent||Torque: Build a force-amplifying, torque-based pulley system capable of lifting amounts of mass within a specified range.|
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