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The tools to teach physics

"Without question I would recommend SKPT. It’s a very important offer and the benefits are wide-ranging... I am definitely better equipped to be in a classroom teaching physics."

Published: 18 July 2023

More than 500 teachers have now taken part in our subject knowledge for physics teaching CPD, which provides professional support to enable those teaching physics out of specialism to develop their confidence, knowledge and pedagogy. The CPD is delivered by expert practitioners through a combination of face-to-face sessions, online tutorials and independent learning. The programme is easily accessible, grounded in research and provides teaching ideas that can be taken straight into the classroom.

Jules Becker has recently completed his sixth SKPT module – he will have completed three modules with The Ogden Trust over the past year and says it has been his “best and most fulfilling year of CPD.” Jules explains more about his SKPT experience and his journey to becoming a physics teacher.

“I have been a teacher for more than 20 years, teaching media studies, photography, media production and film studies at KS5. In 2008 I read about the dearth of physics teachers in the UK. I had always been interested in physics and the article made me think about training to teach the subject. In 2016, having revised all my maths from scratch, I began studying physics again.

“I did a physics TSST which was cut short because of the COVID pandemic. Keen to continue my professional development in physics teaching, and following a recommendation from a colleague, I started on the Subject Knowledge for Physics Teaching (SKPT) programme. The programme was initially delivered by the Institute of Physics, and I have done IOP modules in forces, electromagnetism and energy. In the past 12 months I have done Ogden SKPT modules in waves and matter & space, and I am now completing the Ogden SKPT in atomic physics.

SKPT modules Autumn term - electricity and waves Spring term - energy and matter & space Summer term - forces and atomic physics

“The SKPT CPD has extended and deepened my physics subject knowledge and I am significantly more confident delivering physics content now than I was;  without the support of the SKPT CPD I’m not sure I would have lasted on this journey.

“The SKPT programme has definitely influenced my teaching. Through the programme I have been introduced to the Best Evidence Science Teaching (BEST) resources developed by the University of York Science Education Group. The BEST resources have really helped me to tune in to student misconceptions and respond to them more effectively. Prior to SKPT, the idea of evidence almost exclusively referred to the various types of assessments and analysis of data from those assessments. The experience of working with BEST materials on successive SKPTs has given me a whole new appreciation of the phrase ‘evidenced based’.

“I like the blended learning format of SKPT. I commit myself 100 per cent to the independent learning and invest a lot of time and effort in that part of the programme, but my relative inexperience means that I have definitely appreciated the chance to participate in face-to-face and online sessions led by physics specialists, and the opportunity to ask questions and get meaningful answers.

“Without question I would recommend SKPT. It’s a very important offer and the benefits are wide-ranging. The biggest selling point for me is that in key areas of the subject SKPT has given me a conceptual understanding that wasn’t there previously. Aside from making me more confident, it means that I am definitely better equipped to be in a classroom teaching physics.”

Learn more

Six SKPT modules are available next year at locations across England, and booking is now open. Electricity and waves will both be delivered from October. You can hear from other SKPT participants in this short video about the programme.

Develop your teaching skills and confidence to bring physics to life in the classroom
Book your FREE place via the STEM Learning website.


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