Physics spec comparison

This might be a thing that already exists. I haven’t seen it, though, so wanted to put something together.

Next year, I’m swapping from AQA to Edexcel IGCSE. Naturally, I’m keen to really dig down & understand the differences between the specs.

In the images below (also downloadable in an Excel spreadsheet), I’ve tried to classify what’s on the AQA and Edexcel IGCSE specs. Green means it’s on the spec. Dark green is HT only. Orange is separate only & red means it doesn’t feature. It’ll be missing some of the subtlety (i.e. how much depth it goes into) but is hopefully useful as a rough guide. I’ve organised it under the names of the AQA topics (as it’s the most widely used exam board).

Because I was interested in what the difference between Edexcel IGCSE and regular Edexcel was, I also put this on there.

Now, I’m early in my thought process with looking at a comparison of these specs. I have a couple of conclusions so far, though:

  • Amount of content in each spec seems roughly similar (although Edexcel IGCSE spec does seem to have the least content). 
  • AQA and Edexcel content is *very* similar. My existing AQA booklets would be largely suitable to use for Edexcel (with small tweaks). 
  • Edexcel IGCSE is the only combined spec here with any space on it. I like teaching space. That’s good. 

And my biggest conclusion so far:


I get that a lot of schools/departments skim off their HPA students & kind of do an accelerated separate only course. I do. But I also think it’s unreasonable that extra time on the timetable isn’t given for this (in many cases). You don’t get an extra GCSE for no extra work. I feel for LPA students who aren’t given the chance to study lots of interesting topics just because we can’t teach the content in the allocated time (and *especially* in a 2 year KS4).

If someone feels like adding to the spreadsheet with other specs like OCR then that’d be welcome. As I said a week or so ago, I have some vague plans in the future to make this site a little more exam board agnostic. I have a complete set of KS4 & KS5 AQA resources but will slowly add some worksheets/resources on things that aren’t on the AQA specs.


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