From the formation of a galaxy to the bouncing of a ball to the operation of a microscope, Physics helps us to understand the universe in which we live. Physics is both satisfyingly rigorous in its treatment of the theory behind the workings of nature and in its treatment of the practical skills required to become a methodical and rounded scientist.

The Physics Department at Charterhouse is a thriving one, and our pupils gain an understanding of the physical principles behind such things as Mechanics, Optics, Electricity and Magnetism, Waves, Nuclear Physics and Astrophysics.

In addition to developing mathematical and problem-solving skills, we aim to emphasise the role of Physics in terms of its social, economic and environmental importance. The world would be very different without wireless communication, the electric generator and much more!

The department enjoys close links with the University of Surrey and local schools such as Broadwater and Rodborough and is a leader in the development of IT use within the classroom, and works with the Mathematics Department in delivering teacher training via the School-Centred Initial Teacher Training (SCITT) initiative.

Easter revision courses are run by the department for Year 11 pupils from local schools and also regular subject development workshops for teachers, including a residential course every summer.

The department also offers a free Saturday morning 'booster course' aimed at enhancing Physics subject knowledge. Find out more via the link below: 

Physics Subject Knowledge Enhancement Course 

Find out more about our STEM Outreach project.


In Years 9 to 11, pupils follow the Edexcel IGCSE course which provides a strong foundation for continued study in the Sixth Form.

In Years 12 and 13, Physics can be studied via AQA A Level or the IB Diploma Programme. Both of these routes cover the subject in an academically rigorous manner, with the fundamental areas of the subject treated in a satisfying level of detail, supported by a modern and in-depth practical course.

For full details of the curriculum, please use the link below.


Beyond the Curriculum

As well as regular entry to academic competitions at all levels via the British Physics Olympiad, there are a number of co-curricular societies on offer, examples include:

  • STEMSoc which encourages collaboration with the other sciences including Computer Science and the Design Technology Departments.
  • Aeronautical Society which is aiming to launch Charterhouse’s first High Altitude Balloon in 2020.
  • Astronomical Society which makes use of the observatory on the roof of the Science building to make observations of the night sky.
  • In addition, in Years 12 and 13 a Further Physics elective runs to allow pupils not studying the subject at A Level to explore areas to a higher level as a complement to their other A Level choices.