No A-level physics at 16 per cent of schools

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The Independent Online

Hundreds of state secondary schools are a physics-free zone at A-level, according to a new study published today.

Research by the Royal Society shows that one in six secondary schools in England do not put in a single candidate for physics at A-level. This figure rises to 43 per cent in Northern Ireland.

In addition, only 17 per cent of students in the UK studied at least one science subject at university. The report calls for a major reform of A-levels along the lines of the International Baccalaureate to enable pupils to study more subjects in the sixth form.

At present, only a small proportion of students are taught maths and science at A-level, which means too few go on to study science, technology, engineering and maths degrees at university.