IB Physics Grade Predictor: Want to know if you're going to pass IB Physics?
Take this Grade Predictor Quiz 👇 below 👇 and read how your attitude to study is more important than ability when predicting your IB Physics grade
These resources will help you improve your IB Physics Grade
[PAID OPTION] Ace Your IB Physics Exams
HERE’S HOW THE GRADE PREDICTOR WORKS
You’ll notice that I predicted your grade and I didn’t ask you ONE, SINGLE, IB Physics question….. That’s because you’re final grade really does not have much to do with how ‘good’ you are at physics. Your final grade depends on how well you prepare for your final exams AND if you approach your exams strategically.
There’s a misconception that only intelligent students can get a 7 in IB Physics. I mean, it sure helps if you can easily answer every question in front of you and you can recite the whole textbook! However, I’ve been teaching IB Physics since 2004 and I’ve only ever met a handful of students who have been able to do this.
I mostly teach conscientious students of average (or slightly above) average ability in IB Physics and I mostly get amazing results for them.
Getting the maximum grades out of IB Physics students has nothing to do with how hard you work, it depends on how strategic you are in your exam preparation.
WHY your IB Physics predicted grade matters
Your teacher will be asked to submit a predicted grade on your behalf to the IBO in advance of your exams. This grade is an indication of your expected ability in the final exams and may be used in the event of your exams being cancelled.
There’s every chance your teacher will simply use a mock exam result to predict your grade. However, it is more likely they’ll use a measure of your attitude in class to boost that mock exam grade.
If they believe that you’ll improve your grade between class tests and the final exam, they’ll inflate the grade appropriately. They do this because they understand the importance of strategic study to get the best grades possible. They will do this is they trust you to study independently and responsibly. This quiz looks at your attitude to IB Physics and your ability to study strategically , which is exactly what your teachers is looking for when they are giving justification for a predicted grade.
Here are the factors that affect your performance in IB Physics exams
1. IB Physics Specification
The IB Physics specification is a ‘must have’ to ensure you are studying the correct material for the exam. Oddly…due to IBO copyright - I can’t share that online with you unless I am your teacher (and you join my paid online course)
The specification will guide you on the depth of knowledge required and the topics you should study.
This specification should also be used by your IB Physics Teacher to guide their teaching in school. You should grab yourself a copy as soon as possible and use the specification to give yourself an idea of how quickly and thoroughly you are covering the material in class.
If you've spent anytime studying the IB Physics guide - you'll probably notice that it there's a LOT of information in there, including ToK references, AIM references, etc. However, if you look behind all that you’ll see the content that you need to learn for the exam.
I've long been thinking that it could be split up into clearer learning objectives to better focus teaching.
A checklist of the IB Physics specification learning objectives would be ideal... and many other exam specification are laid out in this format.
So I've spent a great deal of time splitting the complete IB Physics course up into a clear checklist. If you’d like a copy of this simple checklist to aid your learning of IB Physics - click here.
This IB Physics checklist fast-tracks the IB Physics specification and provides a simple list of exact learning objectives you need to know for the IB Physics exams.
Get Your IB Physics Specfication Checklist HERE
Quite simply… if it’s not in the checklist, it’s not in the exam
NOTE: This checklist is included in my #1 online programme, Ace Your IB Physics Exams
Hopefully you can see now that knowing exactly what will be in your IB Physics exam is much more powerful than actually knowing ALL of physics!
2. IB Physics Definitions
Did you know that 9-11% of the IB Physics exams papers rely on you memorising definitions?
You don’t believe me - do you?
OK. I’ll prove it.
- I RANDOMLY opened one past paper. I chose May 2016 Paper 2 HL
- I noted every question that requires you to memorise a definition. See screenshots of these questions below
- I counted the marks allocated to these questions. It was 8 marks in total. Paper 2 is out of 90.
- This is 8.8% of the paper (round up to 9%!). If you knew these definitions - you’d easily increase your grade by 9%.
I checked through ALL the past papers and the average grade allocated to memorising definitions in IB Physics exams is 9-11%
Hopefully now you understand that you don’t have to be really clever to memorise a set of definitions. Even if you’re an ‘average’ student in IB Physics - getting a 5 or 6 in class tests - you can still achieve a 7 by upping your grade by 9-11% simply by memorising definitions.
I have a mini video course that can help you with this task, called Drunk on Definitions.
- 💻 12 x SHORT video tutorials leading you through memorising the key definitions from scratch
- 📄 1 x Complete list of definitions needed to ace your IB Physics Exams
- 💡 4 x Memory techniques explored in "Master Your Memory" guide
- 😌 1 x Complete peace of mind that you'll discover EXACTLY every definition you need to know for every IB Physics test or exam.
It works. Anders used Druns on Definitions and check this out:
NOTE: This mini course is included in my #1 online programme, Ace Your IB Physics Exams
3. IB Physics Internal Assessment (Maximum Marks)
Your IB Physics IA makes up 20% of your final IB Physics grade and it is worth maximising your marks in this important element. You’ll find a HUGE amount of material on the IB Physics on this GradePod Blog and I’ll link the most important posts below.
However, I very much recommend that (as a minimum) you ask yourself these ten vital questions in my IB Physics IA Checklist:
- Is your research question clearly stated near the top of your IA in the format of, “How does... (variable X)… affect… (variable Y)?”
Does your IA have these sub-headings in the correct order?
Theory and Hypothesis
Analysis and Conclusion
- Take an honest look at your Theory. Does it explain the theory behind your research question exactly?
- Is your diagram labelled?
- Does your method have under 10 bullet points in it?
Have you followed these instructions in your RAW DATA table?
- Don’t include any averages or processing in the raw data table
- Put the quantity and it’s unit in each column heading – unit notation should not be in italics….!
- Each column should have a consistent number of decimal places
- Include reading uncertainties underneath the raw data table.
- Uncertainties should be given to 1s.f.
Have you followed these instructions for your PROCESSED DATA table?
- The new table under the heading Processed Data
- Include one column for each calculation you make with the data
- Include a heading for each column – don’t forget units! Unit notation should not be in italics…!
- If you square a quantity, you should also square the unit. Similarly, if you cube the quantity, cube the unit. etc.
- You must show an example of each calculation you have made below the table. Choose one row of the table and give example calculations of each step.
Have you followed these instructions on your graph?
- Ideally you want variable X on the x-axis and variable Y on the y-axis.
- Use a simple scatter plot in excel – nothing fancier
- Check the data is on the correct axis when it is automatically selected in excel – use the ‘select data’ function to change it – if required
- Add error bars to your graph (see video above for error bar options in excel)
- Add three lines of best fit:
- Best Line of Fit (through as many of the data points as possible)
- Max Line of Fit (steepest line through the error bars)
- Min Line of Fit (shallowest line through the error bars)
- Calculate the gradient of each line of best fit. If drawing the graph on paper – show the ‘gradient triangle’ as large as possible to reduce relative uncertainty in calculating the gradient.
- The gradient must have the correct units – they will be the units of the quantity on the y-axis divided by the units of the quantity on the x-axis.
- Make sure the graph has a title and axes titles (with units)
- Does your conclusion match what is actually shown by your data?
- Have you included three limitations of your experiment and three possible improvements for these limitations?
These questions will be useful after you have finished you first draft of your IA and you’re ready for your teacher to provide feedback.
If you are at a different stage, you can use the following blog posts to guide you to maximising your marks in your IB Physics IA:
The EXACT Structure And Subtitles You Should Use In Your IB Physics Internal Assessment [Updated 2022]
IB Physics IA | Projectile Motion (Mechanics) | Possible Research Questions
5 Lies That You Have Probably Been Told About Your IB Physics IA
IB Physics IA Example: How to Write Your Physics IA (SL and HL)
IB Physics IA Ideas: 12 Investigations You Can Complete At Home [UPDATED 2023]
How to choose the perfect IB Physics internal assessment topic in under 15 minutes
Again, this step in ensuring that you are properly prepared for your IB Physics exams does NOT depend on how intelligent you are. You can actually get really good marks in your IB Physics IA with a simple research question and following a set of simple instructions that meet all the points on the marking criteria.
If you’d like further help with your Physics IA, I offer a step-by-step guide to writing the perfect Physics IA. It’s a series of short video tutorials and you would copy my exact workflow. I’ll pretty much tell you exactly what to write and where.
VIDEO TUTORIALS: IB Physics IA
NOTE: These video tutorials are included in my #1 online programme, Ace Your IB Physics Exams
4. IB Physics TOPIC’s 1 & 2 (Important!)
Topics 1 & 2 are both particularly important topics that will help push you towards the final grade of 7 in IB Physics.
They are both heavily-examined in Papers 2 & 3 AND they are generally taught at the start of the course. This means you have two years to become an expert in these topics. You don’t need to be a genius in IB Physics to get good at these topics.
This further information should help:
Topic 1: Measurements and Uncertainties
Here are the important exam facts about Topic 1: Measurements and Uncertainties
IMPORTANCE OF TOPIC
How heavily weighted is this topic in IB Physics?
- Standard Level: 9.2%
- Higher Level: 8.3%
This means that 9.2% (or 8.3% in HL) of your final IB Physics mark is down to answering questions about Topic 1 in your final exam...... That's the difference between a 6 and a 7.
The following three concepts within Topic 1 are most commonly examined. You need to be sooooo good at these concepts.
- Percentage Uncertainties
- Plotting Graphs (linearisation)
- Scalars and Vectors
Don’t discount this topic - paper 3 (section A) is pretty much ALL about topic 1.
MEMORISE THESE FACTS TO IMPROVE EXAM PERFORMANCE
- Pythagorean right-angled triangle has sides of length 3-4-5 (5 is on the hypoteneuse!)
- Fundamental SI units are: m, s, kg, mol, A, K, Cd
- Volume of a sphere
Topic 2: Mechanics
Here are the important exam facts about Topic 2: Mechanics
IMPORTANCE OF TOPIC
How heavily weighted is this topic in IB Physics?
- Standard Level: 14.8%
- Higher Level: 8.6%
This means that 14.8% (or 8.6% in HL) of your final IB Physics mark is down to answering questions about Topic 2 in your final exam...... That's HUGE!.
The following three concepts within Topic 2 are most commonly examined. You need to be sooooo good at these concepts.
- Projectile Motion
- Forces in Equilibrium
- Conservation of Momentum
Not drawing a diagram is about the worst thing you can do!
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE TO KNOW:
- EXACTLY what learning objectives are examined in this IB Physics - click here
- Which formulae are not in the data booklet, but need to be memorised - click here
- The precise definitions that have been examined in IB Physics and which ones you should memorise - click here
NOTE: ALL of these resources are included in my #1 online programme, Ace Your IB Physics Exams
5. IB Physics Past Paper Questionbank
Completing past papers is a valuable revision tool as you get close to your exams; HOWEVER, you can improve your grades much sooner by using past paper questionbanks, split out by topic.
IB Physics is a two-year course for a reason… it usually takes two years to develop the advanced problem-solving skills and exam technique necessary to get top marks in your IB Physics exams.
You can quickly accelerate that progress by using practice exam question, split out by IB Physics topic - as soon as possible.
You’ll develop an understanding of the types of question that the examiners asks for each topic. You’ll also notice that the same questions are asked repeatedly.
You really don’t have to be top of the class to start this strategic study tactic.
You can ask your teacher to provide you with a bank of past paper questions (including the marking criteria). If they don’t have any, you can access 2,000+ IB Physics past paper questions (split out by topic) inside my #1 online programme, Ace Your IB Physics Exams.
[PAID OPTION] Ace Your IB Physics Exams
6. IB Physics Topics (Review Immediately)
After you’ve been taught a topic in class, it’s a good idea to review the topic immediately. It’s most likely you’ll have a class assessment and it helps if you write revision notes for that topic - you’ll find the final exams much easier.
Your revision notes for each course topic should follow exactly the same structure – that way, you start to know instinctively where to look for certain types of information. The most efficient way to ensure this is to create a template with the following subheadings already mapped out.
- Required Definitions
- Common Diagrams
- Common Graphs
- Other Notes
You can then print, or photocopy multiple versions and be ready for action for every topic you study.
FREE TIME-SAVING DOWNLOAD!
I have designed a revision note template for you and it looks like this:
Get Your Blank Template For Physics Revision Notes HERE
Again… you don’t have to be a genius to carry out this simple task. It’s easy to write these notes while the content is fresh in your mind.
If you use these notes while you are attempting past paper questions, you’ll notice a significant and immediate increase in your marks.
This blog post (and grade predictor quiz) are designed to prove to you that you don’t need to be a genius to get a 7 in IB Physics. There are some simple tasks you can undertake to help increase your marks very quickly.
[PAID OPTION] Ace Your IB Physics Exams
FREE eBook: The ULTIMATE IB Physics Internal Assessment Guide
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