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Topic 1 (Core)
Topic 2 (Core)
Topic 3 (Core)
Topic 4 (Core)
Topic 5 (Core)
Topic 6 (Core)
Topic 7 (Core)
Topic 8 (Core)
Topic 9 (AHL)
Topic 10 (AHL)
Topic 11 (AHL)
Topic 12 (AHL)
Option A - Relativity
Option B - Engineering
Option C - Imaging
Option D - Astrophysics
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About this Wiki
Thanks to the 53,710 users of this Wiki during the month of May. That was the highest month ever!
This Wiki contains
notes and basic
for the entire standard and higher level IB Physics courses (first examinations in 2016). The
that we use in groups can also be found here. Any correspondence can be addressed to Timothy Lund at Rufus King International School at 1801 W. Olive Street, Milwaukee, WI, 53209-6898, USA. My email is
This Wiki covers all of the new IB Physics (first examinations in 2016) CORE and AHL curriculum and both the Standard Level and Higher Level portions of Option A - Relativity. You are on your own for now on the other options, though I may be able to fit them into the school year.
NEW: Discussion threads are now enabled on each page.
Wiki usage constraints
Instructors, parents, and students may download and display for educational purposes the free resources made available on the pages of this Wiki (IBPhysics2016.wikispaces.com). The resources contained on this Wiki, or any facsimiles or derivatives of these resources, may not be used for any commercial purpose whatsoever. If you are an instructor or parent who is using the keys to the Problem Sets or the Formative Assessments, they may not be electronically posted. The goal is to keep them off of the Internet, in respect to instructors who are currently using them in many different ways.
If you are a physics instructor and would like additional materials, feel free to contact me.
Be sure your email address reflects that you work for a school district and are not an enterprising student
. Please don't post any of my answer keys on the Internet! A word of warning: The keys were made over the summer (whilst I was well into my cups) and have not been verified as accurate. If you find mistakes, let me know!
This wiki is not really a wiki, in the sense that people do not join - and nobody but me makes changes. It is merely a repository for notes and resources for my students. Send any questions, comments, corrections, or suggestions to me at
. I would also be interested in adding useful links to simulations and further lessons to these pages.
Physics advice from Neil deGrasse Tyson
As of 8/31/15, Topics 1 through 12, and Option A: Relativity (both SL and HL) are complete. This is enough for the 2016 SL exams.
5/25/16: I will work on Option B - Engineering this summer.
8/11/16: Alas, I only finished the first Option B presentation, and no practice problems. We'll see how this new school year goes.
This video shows my FIRST Robotics team's 2014 robot during autonomous scoring...
The team has access to a plasma cutter this year for the manufacturing of parts for the 2016 robot.
The official 2016 Physics Guide and Physics Data Booklet
Here is the official Physics Guide and the Physics Data Booklet published by the IBO.
The Word document below is a condensed formula sheet containing all of the formulas in the Physics Data Booklet. If you want to save on paper, hand this out instead.
Physics topical formula set.doc
The ( OLD ) 2009 Physics Guide and Physics Data Booklet
Many of you have no doubt noticed that in the transition from the 2009 Guide to the 2016 Guide the IBO removed a lot of detail. Being an old stick-in-the mud, I miss that detail. Just for reference I have included these old-cycle documents for your reference. DO NOT USE THESE FOR THE NEW CYCLE!
Physics Guide 2009.pdf
Data Booklet 2009.pdf
Suggestions for instructor, parent, and student usage
is tutorial-quality, if you use them as class presentations, and if time is of the essence, you could present the more difficult concepts in detail, and scroll quickly through the easier stuff, instructing students to follow up and fill in the blanks on their own. The Problem Sets offer complete, though basic, coverage of the entire slide show, so students can determine whether or not they understand the complete range of material in the presentation. Use of the presentations for review is also an option. A student could scroll through the Wiki and look for subtopics that he or she needs to brush up on prior to writing the IB exams.
Because of the detail in the
s, you could flip your classroom if you have that caliber of student. I have never tried this method, but I guess it could be done.
It is highly recommended that problems from old tests are incorporated into the practice problems given to students so that they get a feel for the depth of coverage expected by the IBO. The test generator called the
and sold by the IBO is an easy way to do this. It has questions and mark schemes from past exams in exhaustive supply. Most of the material from the old cycle is still in the new cycle.
New Rufus King IB Physics Standards are being developed
The new standards for the IB Physics track are currently being developed to integrate MYP, NGSS, and DP standards. See the
page for the current drafts. Also on this page are the current drafts of the unit planners for MYP.
Online physics sites
These online resources present the same material as the notes on this Wiki in different ways. The PhET Simulations site can be used for internal assessment ideas.
The Physics Classroom
Khan Academy Physics Lectures
Brightstorm Physics Lectures
A-Plus Physics with Fullerton
First look at changes
See the Wiki page
for an overview of the new syllabus.
See the Wiki page
2016, 2009 Comparison
for a more detailed look at the approximate overlap of the curriculum.
A cursory glance reveals that...
Kinematics in 2D (projecile motion, current Topic 9.1) has returned to the Core material.
The coefficients of friction are back.
Some of Topic 4 has been postponed for AHL 9. Namely formulas showing time dependence of position and velocity of particles in SHM:
; v = -
Particle physics, including Feynman diagrams, is now in the core Topic 7.
Some of Topic 8 has just gone away but most is still there - just crammed into fewer subtopics.
Banked motion seems to be getting a bit more treatment, now, but (in my opinion) not enough. For being an "International Curriculum" it is a pity that IB Physics students still aren't required to learn how a commercial airliner actually changes direction! I have included such examples in the Problem Set for Topic 6, just because. Skip those if you want.
There will be just four options. They are Option A: Relativity; Option B: Engineering physics; Option C: Imaging; and Option D: Astrophysics.
Students are only required to learn one of the options
Paper 3, the Option test, will have two parts:
• Section A: one data-based question and several short-answer questions on IBO-suggested experimental work, common to all testers, regardless of which option they choose. Each Core and AHL subtopic has suggested labs under Aim 6. These suggested labs will likely be the subjects of the Section A questions.
• Section B: short-answer and extended-response questions from one option of the student's choice.
Note that even if an option is superficially covered (say, because of time constraints), Section A will be general enough that students can at least "pad" their grade.
The HL options will just be extensions of the SL options. I think this is a good change, at least for me, because I have always chosen my HL options to correspond with the SL options I cover. I suppose instructors and students may be disappointed to have fewer option choices.
The engineering physics option, Option B, has rotational kinematics and rotational dynamics in it. This is a welcome addition to the physics curriculum.
Internal assessments are now going to be weighted at 20% of a candidate's overall grade, as opposed to 24%.
The old 0, 1 and 2 marks for each aspect of Design (D), Data Collection and Presentation (DCP), and Conclusion and Evaluation (CE), are gone.
The new assessment scheme can be seen on the
page of this Wiki. It is very different from the old scheme. In the past, we submited each student's best two samples from D, DCP, and CE, from up to 6 completely different labs.
The new scheme consists of submitting a single scientific investigation taking about 10 hours and having a writeup from 6 - 12 pages in length
The investigations could be hands-on laboratory in nature, using a spreadsheet for analysis and modeling, extracting data from a database and analyzing it graphically, a hybrid of all of these, and using a simulation provided it is interactive and open-ended.
The new assessment model uses five criteria to assess the final report of the individual investigation with the following raw marks assigned:
You can look at the rubric details on the
page of this Wiki.
Theory of knowledge
: I have included ToK stuff in each topic page on this new Wiki. My favorite, so far, is this one from Option C.1: "Could sign convention, using the symbols of positive and negative, emotionally influence scientists?" Somebody shoot me...
: I have included a table of the Group 4
Physics Command Terms
which is perhaps a worthwhile student handout.
So, you're in for the long haul. Which colleges will accept IB credit?
This is the link to the page of the IBO site that has the pull-down menu with information for all schools in the world that accept IB credit:
This is the link to the page of the IBO site that has the pull-down menu with information for all schools in the United States that accept IB credit:
You should always contact your prospective schools to verify that their IB information is current - some of it appears to be outdated.
These schools are popular with Rufus King students...
University of Minnesota
Organization of this Wiki - IB Physics SL
The IB Physics Standard Level (SL) scores are based on...
: Core Topics which are Topic 01 through Topic 08. (
: One Option. (
: Lab practicals. (
Organization of this Wiki - IB Physics HL
The IB Physics Higher Level (HL) scores are based on...
: Core Topics which are Topic 01 through Topic 08. (
: Additional Higher Level Topics which are Topic 09 AHL through Topic 12 AHL. (
: One Option. (
: Lab practicals. (
Organization of the Wiki pages
Each wiki page covers one of 12 topics, four options, plus sections devoted to internal and external assessments.
Each wiki page has a list of the IBO topics a student must master for the IB Exam (the assessment criteria). These topics are also contained in each subtopic
presentation for review.
Each wiki page has scattered within the IBO topic list links to online resources which may be interesting and useful, or just fun.
Each wiki page has the main
notes listed by subtopic. The main note presentations occur within the text of the assessment criteria.
Each wiki page has a Problem Set that covers the notes to exhaustion, but not necessarily in depth. The problem Set should be supplemented with old exam questions, if at all possible. Instructors can send me an email for Problem Set keys.
Each wiki page has Formative Assessments for each subtopic. These are just additional practice for students. Instructors can send me an email for Formative Assessment keys, too.
Extensions are located at the bottom of the wiki page and are not required information, but merely go beyond what the IBO requires for the IB exams. Extensions are recommended for those students who think physics or engineering might be a choice as a profession in the future.
Organization of the
begins with the IBO subtopic outline that pertains to the notes. The notes are fairly lively and animated, and the detail is sufficient that students can use them as tutorials. I tried to compromise between how
is meant to be used, and increasing the detail to provide self-tutorial-quality notes for students who might miss class, or might need more time to digest the material.
Gray-background boxes contains notes. The IBO assessment criteria are in blue at the top of the page. Yellow-background boxes contain examples. Green-background boxes contain practice problems for students to try without looking at the solutions. Pink-background boxes contain FYI to add interest or make important points not otherwise made. There are embedded links in some of the notes, too, but they are easy to miss. All the links are also located on the wiki page from which the notes were downloaded.
For the first tests in 2016
: I used these books as references for the PowerPoint notes on this Wiki.
Physics for the IB Diploma
by K. A. Tsokos, Sixth Edition, published by Cambridge University Press.
Physics 2014 Edition
by David Homer and Michael Bowen-Jones, published by Oxford University Press.
For the first tests in 2009
: I used these books as references for the PowerPoint notes on the Wiki IBPhysicsLund, and on this Wiki.
Physics Course Companion
by Tim Kirk and Neil Hodgson, published by Oxford University Press.
Standard Level Physics
by Chris Hamper and Keith Ord, published by Heinemann Baccalaureate.
: I used this book as a reference for the PowerPoint notes on the Wiki IBPhysicsLund, and this Wiki.
Fundamentals of Physics
by David Halliday, Robert Resnick and Jearl Walker, published by Wiley.
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