British Physics Olympiad
Why take part?
The British Physics Olympiad (BPhO) aims to encourage the study of Physics and recognise excellence in young physicists through four annual Physics competitions.
The competitions are designed to test understanding and problem solving skills and are open to able young physicists in school years 11-13 (GCSE to A2 or equivalent).
Participation in a British Physics Olympiad is a challenge for able students which allows them to:
- Have fun problem solving
- Test their knowledge with stimulating questions
- See the real-world problem-solving potential of physics
- Practise open-ended and unstructured questions, as seen at higher levels of study
- Gain a prestigious award for CVs and UCAS forms
- Win Certificates and book prizes
- Develop the skills required for admission to top universities
- Compare their attainment with students from all over the United Kingdom
- Qualify for additional training with the best students, and the chance to represent Britain at the International Physics Olympiad.
Setting and marking papers
We recognise that teachers are busy and aim to make our competitions as easy as possible to run in your school. Most examination papers require just one hour, either in lessons, after school or at home.
The A2 Challenge, and details of how to enter our other competitions is sent to all schools in September.
The A2 Challenge, AS Challenge and Physics Challenge are supplied with easy-to-follow mark schemes and are marked in school. Any queries are dealt with promptly by the Administration Office. Certificates are dispatched quickly to schools upon receipt of record sheets. Free entry is also available this year for the AS Challenge and Physics Challenge.
The BPhO Round 1 (previously Paper 2) and later rounds are marked by experienced markers, with teachers kept informed of students’ progress at each stage by post and email.