The physics content of the GAMSAT seems to vary greatly - the 20% theory seemed from my experience to be a rather inflated estimate. Still common themes tend to emerge over the years - favourite areas seem to be relatively simple electrics (although I was confronted with a hideously difficult question looking at how to reduce voltage - so going beyond the simple basics may be a good idea!), gravity related areas, optics...
Physics Core Topics
The GAMSAT is designed to test year 12 physics topics.
These topics tend to recur.
- Vectors & Kinematics
- vectors and scalars, displacement, velocity, acceleration, linear motion, projectile motion.
- Electric Fields
- potential, field strength, Capacitance, combining capacitors, energy stored in a capacitor.
- convex, focal length, concave, magnification.
Additional Core Topics
- moments, Newton's law of motion, friction and equilibrium
- Work, Energy & Momentum
- power, work, mechanical energy, kinetic and potential energy, conservation of momentum, internal energy, Ideal gases
- Elastic properties of solids
- Hooke's law, elasticity, stress, Young's modulus, strain
- Current electricity
- resistors in parallel and series, resistance, Ohm's law, current and drift velocity, emf and voltage
- Magnetic Fields
- field strength, force on a moving charge, fields due to currents
- oscillations, resonance, wave measurements, supersition and interference, simple harmonic motion.
- Refractive index
- The photoelectric effect, work constant of metals
- Radioactive decay
- rate of decay and half life, emissions, stable and unstable nuclei
- decibels, intensity, sound level
The above list has deliberately excluded some key year 12 topics, that are not commonly covered in the GAMSAT. These include:
- quantum duality
- particle accelerators
Some topics that came up in a single GAMSAT include:
- Forces at rest
- Force and Motion
- Vibration, Waves and Sound
- Gravitational and Electrical Fields
- Currents and circuits
- Thermal Physics
- Particle Physics