Physics helps students understand the world in which they live. The concepts of physics explain many of the wonders of our everyday lives. It is the role of physics in the general education of Leaving Certificate students that is emphasized by this department and is supported, in particular, by the science, technology and society component of the lessons. A further aim is to help our students to develop the ability to understand certain social issues that they, as citizens, may encourage in their lives. We also introduce students to the world of physics and aim to interest them in proceeding with further studies in physics or the technical areas of engineering, which can be considered as applied physics. Physics contributes in an important way to providing students with a broad general education, as well as preparing them for further education.
We strive to provide continuity with and progression from the Junior Certificate program. In St. Joseph’s we try to emphasize the importance of:
• Self-directed learning and independent thought
• A spirit of inquiry, critical thinking, problem solving, self-reliance, initiative and enterprise
• Preparation for further education, for adult and working life
• Lifelong learning.
• To contribute to students’ general education through their involvement in the process of scientific investigation and the acquisition of physical;
• To encourage in students an attitude of scientific enquiry, of curiosity and self-discovery through
(i) individual study and personal initiative
(ii) team work
(iii) class-directed work
• To develop an understanding of physical facts and principles
• to create an awareness of the application of physical knowledge to modern society in personal, social, economic, environmental, industrial, agricultural, medical, waste management and other technological contexts
• To develop in students an ability to make informed evaluations about contemporary physical issues.
• To give students an understanding of the fundamental principles of physics and their application to everyday life and technology
• To develop an appreciation of physics as a human endeavor, thereby enriching the students’ experience of life
• To provide a reasonably broad perspective of physics, thus developing an understanding of the physical environment and of how human beings interact with it
• To provide a general education in physics for all students, whether or not they proceed to further studies in physics
• To develop the ability to observe, to think logically, and to communicate effectively
• To develop an understanding of the scientific method
• To develop an appreciation of physics as a creative activity, using informed intuition and imagination to create an understanding of the beauty, simplicity and symmetry in nature.