You are on page 1of 20

# GUIDE TO PHYSICS

PRACTICALS
1. Measurement and Observation
2.

Presentation of results
3.
Graphical Work

MEASUREMEN
T AND
OBSERVATION

## 1.1 Points and Interval Required

required
required
Sensible interval must be chosen
e.g. 15cm < d < 75cm
20cm, 30cm, 40cm, 50cm, 60cm,
70cm

Candidates expected to repeat readings and

## calculate average. (at least 3 readings)

ALL raw data (readings) must be recorded,

l/cm
30.0

t1/s
t2/s
t3/s
16.2

16.6
RAW DATA

16.0

Average, Period
<t>/s
T/s
16.3

0.813

FINAL AVERAGE
VALUE

## 1.3 Significant Figures

The number of significant figures in the final

## calculated quantity should be related to the

number of s.f in the Raw Data
Example:

## Resistance of voltmeter is 50 000, Better to

write in in scientific notation (standard form)
R = 5 x 104 (1 Sig fig)
R = 5.0 x 104 (2 Sig fig, 1 d.p)

## For logarithmic quantities, the no.

of decimal should be considered. It
is sensible to quote log x to 3d.p if
the values of x is correct to 3s.f

PRESENTATIO
N OF DATA

It must have:
A quantity
A unit
Examples : l/cm or l (cm), t/s or t (s)

(t/s)

## 2.2 Consistency of raw data

ALL raw data should be recorded to
the same number of decimal places
which should be consistent

## Reading (2) is acceptable since all the

raw data are given to the same
degree of accuracy

## 2.3 Significant figures

Calculated quantities should be given to the
same number as s.f. as in the measured
quantity of least accuracy.

3. Graphical Work
Choice of scale
ii. Plotting Points
iii. Line of Best fits
v. Determination of y-intercept.
i.

## 3.1 Choice of scales.

Scale must be chosen so that plotted points will

## cover/occupy more than half the graph for both

x axis and y axis.

## Each scale must be labeled with the quantity

and units.
Chose scale that is easy to read
E.g. 1:1, 1:2, 1:5, 1 :10
Unacceptable scales are 1:3, 2:3 etc.

## 3.2 Plotting Points & Line Best Fit

Points should be accurately plotted, to within

## one half of the small square.

Plot points using cross or a dot.
Line best fit
There must be a balance of points about the
line(i.e. plotted points should be scattered
The line must be thin and clear. Thick lines
will not be accepted!

ALL working must be shown
The triangle should be drawn and the

## coordinates of the vertices clearly labeled.

The coordinates used when calculating the
gradient must be on the straight line.

## 3.5 Finding y-intercept

Find the yintercept on the
graph itself, or by
calculation. y =
mx +c

this graph