AS/A Physics | Errors and Variations | Lesson plan


Aug11- Aug23 (1.5 weeks)


  • Errors vs variation
  • Systematic error vs Random error
  • Propagation of errors
  • Significant figures and scientific notation

Instructional objectives

Students should be able to:

  • differentiate between systematic and random errors
  • realize that uncertainty gets contributions from errors and variations
  • interconvert between Relative and Absolute error
  • understand how errors propagate when we (a) add/subtract (b) multiply/divide (c) powers (d) mixtures of +-*/ (e) other functions
  • round answers properly
  • understand significant figures and represent data in scientific notation
  • Use all the above knowledge to establish a good protocol for doing any experiment and representing the data

Teaching Process

All the concepts are taught using data from the experiment used in the section on Units and Dimensions.


The experiment conducted in the units and dimensions class, would be repeated with good practices and proper representation.

Suggested reading / References

Assignments / Evaluation

  • a written test to check individual concepts separately
  • assignment to derive certain relations concerning propagation of errors
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