Advanced Placement Physics C: Exam Details

The exam is approximately of 1 hour and 30 minutes and contain two sectionss-multiple choice and free response. Each section comprises 50% of the final exam grade.

For the free response question students can use scientific, programmable, or graphing calculator and they will be given the tables of commonly used physics equations.

The following order and sequence are just for the sake of guidance. Flexibility is there for teachers in how they choose to cover the topics in the concept outline.

Section I: Multiple Choice-35 Questions; 45 minutes

The questions will aim to test your knowledge and understanding of basic principles of physics.

Total scores of the MCQ section will be based on the number of correct answers. Points are neither deducted for incorrect answers nor points are awarded for unanswered questions.

Section II: Free Response-3 Questions; 45 minutes

The questions on free response will focus on the application of the principles of physics in greater depth in solving more difficult problems, questions could be either general questions, laboratory-based questions or both.

Questions may be there to:

  • Find directions of vectors or paths of particles
  • To Draw or interpret diagrams
  • Interpret or express physical relationships in graphical form
  • Account for observed phenomena
  • Interpret experimental data, including their limitations
  • Construct and use conceptual models as well as explain their limitations
  • Explain steps taken to arrive at a result or to predict future physical behavior
  • Manipulate the equations that describe physical relationships
  • Obtain reasonable estimates
  • Solving the problems based on the finding of physical quantities in either numerical or symbolic form and that may require the application concepts

Laboratory-related questions may ask you to:

Questions may be based on Design experiments, including identifying equipment that is required and describing its usage, drawing diagrams or providing descriptions of experimental setups, or describing procedures to be used, including controls and measurements taken.

Analyse data, including representation of data in graphical or tabular form, fitting the lines and curves to data points in graphs, performing calculations with data, or making extrapolations and interpolations from data. Analyse errors, including identifying sources of error and how they propagate, estimating magnitude and direction of errors, determining significant digits, or identifying ways to reduce error. Integrate the results, including drawing inferences and conclusions from experimental data, suggestions to improve experiments, or questions for further study. Credit for answers will solely depends on the quality of answers and explanations shown, be assure that you have shown the calculations. Some questions particularly ask you to justify your answer or to explain your reasoning. The following analysis may be in the form of prose, equations, calculations, diagrams, or graphs.

Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism

The exam covers the topics of electricity and magnetism. Following topic areas will be covered in the exam:

  • Electrostatics (30%)
  • Conductors, capacitors, dielectrics (14%)
  • Electric circuits (20%)
  • Magnetic Fields (20%)
  • Electromagnetism (16%)

Physics C: Mechanics

The exam covers the topics of Newtonian mechanics. Following topic areas will be covered in the exam:

  • Kinematics (18%)
  • Newton's laws of motion (20%)
  • Work, energy, power (14%)
  • Systems of particles, linear momentum (12%)
  • Circular motion and rotation (18%)
  • Oscillations and gravitation (18%)