Code: 7813


Fields are a notoriously difficult field (!) in A-level Physics. The concept of a field dates back to Newton in the 17th Century and then was expanded to include electricity and magnetism in the 19th Century and eventually quantum physics in the twentieth. Students are challenged by the abstraction of the concept of a field – it is invisible but it is fills up the whole of space – and also challenged by the mathematical representation.

In this webinar you gain ideas from Tony on how to tackle the challenges of this topic successfully through analysis of the key conceptual difficulties and review of recent examination questions for the topic.


  • Teachers will be able to:
    • Identify the problems that students have with the topic of Fields
    • Examine and discuss good and bad exemplars of examination responses
    • Increase confidence in teaching the difficult concepts
    • Develop strategies for improving learner understanding of the topic
    • Assist learners with preparation for examination questions


Introduction, welcome and sound check

The mathematical and graphical representation of a field

  • The concept of a field – algebraically and graphically
  • The difference between scalar and vector fields
  • The graphical representation of a field
  • The calculus underpinning the mathematics of fields


  • Analyse student exemplar responses for field-based questions – mathematical and graphical analysis

Verbally communicating the concept of a field

  • The essential scientific terminology
  • The use of precise grammatical forms to express exact meaning
  • The conceptual understanding behind the terminology


  • Analyse student exemplar responses for field-based questions – explaining concepts

Tony Dunn

Tony Dunn is a current examiner for OCR A-level Physics and has taught for over 30 years in secondary schools and sixth form colleges, mainly in inner city areas, specialising in A-level Physics. Since the new A-level curriculum was introduced, he has had 100% pass rates with all his A-level Physics groups, whilst working at an inclusive college in a deprived borough. He was a Head of Science for 12 years and also spent several years training Physics teachers in SE Asia.