Best of: Quantum

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Our best of series, published each week, collates our favourite and most popular resources for a particular topic.

This week: Quantum for year 8, 9, 11, and 12 students studying Physical Sciences.

Although most quantum physics is beyond school-level physics, this resource contains what you might need to know to help you understand it down the line – and hopefully open up opportunities for students to progress in this field after school.

Australian Curriculum Codes: ACSSU155, ACSSU182

Year 8: “Energy appears in different forms, including movement (kinetic energy), heat and potential energy, and energy transformations and transfers cause change within systems”

  • recognising that heat energy is often produced as a by-product of energy transfer, such as brakes on a car and light globes

Year 9: “Energy transfer through different mediums can be explained using wave and particle models”

  • exploring how and why the movement of energy varies according to the medium through which it is transferred
  • discussing the wave and particle models and how they are useful for understanding aspects of phenomena
  • investigating the transfer of heat in terms of convection, conduction and radiation, and identifying situations in which each occurs
  • understanding the processes underlying convection and conduction in terms of the particle model

Senior Secondary Sciences:

  • Unit 1: Thermal, nuclear and electrical physics
  • Unit 4: Revolutions in modern physics


Each article should take around 5 minutes to read and activities should take approximately 10 minutes to complete.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this activity:

All must: State what is meant by heat energy, the law of conservation of energy and energy transfer (ACSSU155)

Most should: By referencing the particle model, explain what is heat energy (ACSSU182)

Some could: Understand the consequences for space and time of the equivalence principle for inertial frames of reference (ACSPH123)

Consider which of the above learning outcomes you should be aiming for throughout this activity.

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8-9 & 11-12