(Download) NCERT Revised Syllabus of Physics (Class 11
PHYSICS (CLASSES XI –XII)
The syllabus for Physics at the Higher Secondary Stage has been developed with a
view that this stage of school education is crucial and challenging as it is a
transition from general science to discipline-based curriculum. The
recommendations of National Curriculum Framework-2005 have been followed,
keeping the disciplinary approach with rigour and depth, appropriate to the
comprehension level of learners. Due care has been taken that the syllabus is
not heavy and at the same time it is comparable to the international standards.
The syllabus provides logical sequencing of the subject matter with proper
placement of concepts with their linkages for better understanding.
It is expected that the syllabus will help to develop an
interest in the learners to study Physics as a discipline and inculcate in
learners the abilities, useful concepts of Physics in real-life situations for
making learning of Physics relevant, meaningful and interesting. The learner is
expected to realize and appreciate the interface of Physics with other
The higher secondary stage is crucial and challenging stage
of school education as it is a transition from general science to
discipline-based curriculum. Physics is being offered as an elective subject at
the higher secondary stage of school education. At this stage, the students take
up Physics, as a discipline, with a purpose of pursuing their future careers in
basic sciences or professional courses like medicine, engineering, technology
and studying courses in applied areas of science and technology at tertiary
level. There is a need to provide the learners with sufficient conceptual
background of Physics which would eventually make them competent to meet the
challenges of academic and professional courses after the higher secondary
The present effort of reforming and updating the Physics
curriculum is an exercise based on the feedback received from the school system
about existing syllabus and curricular material, large expansion of Physics
knowledge, and also the educational and curricular concerns and issues provided
in the National Curriculum Framework-2005.
The recommendations of National Curriculum Framework-2005 have
been followed, keeping the disciplinary approach with rigour and depth,
appropriate to the comprehension level of learners. Due care has been taken that
the syllabus is not heavy and at the same time, it is comparable to the
international standards. Also, it is essential to develop linkages with other
disciplines for better learning of Physics concepts and establishing
relationship with daily-life situations and life-skills.
Emphasis on basic conceptual understanding of content.
Promoting process-skills, problem-solving abilities and
applications of Physics concepts/content, useful in real-life situations for
making Physics learning more relevant, meaningful and interesting.
Emphasis on use of SI Units, Symbols, nomenclature of
physical quantities and formulations as
per international standards.
Emphasis on Physics-related technological/industrial
aspects to cope up with changing demand of society committed to the use of
Physics, technology and informatics.
Providing logical sequencing of the ‘Units’ of the
subject matter and proper placement of concepts with their linkages for
better learning and matching the concepts/content with comprehension level
of the learners.
Reducing the curriculum load by eliminating overlapping
of concepts/content within the discipline of Physics or with other
disciplines; reducing the descriptive portion and providing suitable
formulation/depth of treatment appropriate to the comprehension level of
learners, making room for contemporary core - topics and emerging curricular
areas in Physics.
The syllabus is arranged in Units spread over two years
duration. The Units are so sequenced as to provide different dimensions of
Physics as a discipline. The time allocation for learning Physics content
per Unit in terms of instructional periods have been mentioned for each Unit
to help the Textbook Development Team members to develop the instructional
material so as to cover it within the time frame. Each Unit has been
arranged with a topic, content related practical work (one core experiment,
two activities to be evaluated) and suggested investigatory projects (one
project to be evaluated). There is an imperative need for evaluating the
learners through Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation of various concepts
covered in a Unit. With this background, the Physics curriculum at the
higher secondary stage attempts to:
Strengthen the concepts developed at the secondary stage
to provide firm ground work and foundation for further learning Physics at
the tertiary level more effectively and learning the relationship with
Develop conceptual competence in the learners and make
them realize and appreciate the interface of Physics with other disciplines;
Expose the learners to different processes used in
Physics-related industrial and technological applications;
Develop process-skills and experimental, observational,
manipulative, decision-making and investigatory skills in the learners;
Promote problem-solving abilities and creative thinking
to develop interest in the learners in the study of Physics as a discipline;
Understand the relationship between nature and matter on
scientific basis, develop positive scientific attitude, and appreciate the
contribution of Physics towards the improvement of quality of life and human
Physics teaching-learning at the higher secondary stage
enables the learners to comprehend the contemporary knowledge and develop
aesthetic sensibilities and process skills. The experimental skills and
process-skills developed together with conceptual Physics knowledge prepare
the learners for more meaningful learning experiences and contribute to the
significant improvement of quality of life. The learners would also
appreciate the role and impact of Physics and technology, and their linkages
with overall national development.
CLASS XI (THEORY)
(Total Periods: 180)
Unit I: Physical World and Measurement
Physics: Scope and excitement; nature of physical laws; Physics,
technology and society. Need for measurement: Units of measurement; systems of
units; SI units, fundamental and derived
units. Length, mass and time measurements; accuracy and precision of measuring
instruments; errors in measurement; significant figures.
Dimensions of physical quantities, dimensional analysis and its
Unit II: Kinematics
Frame of reference, Motion in a straight line: Position-time
graph, speed and velocity. Uniform and non-uniform motion, average speed and
instantaneous velocity. Uniformly accelerated motion, velocitytime and
position-time graphs, relations for uniformly accelerated motion (graphical
Elementary concepts of differentiation and integration for
describing motion. Scalar and vector quantities: Position and displacement
vectors, general vectors and notation, equality of vectors, multiplication of
vectors by a real number; addition and subtraction of vectors. Relative
Unit vectors. Resolution of a vector in a plane – rectangular
Scalar and Vector products of Vectors. Motion in a plane. Cases
of uniform velocity and uniform acceleration – projectile motion. Uniform
Unit III: Laws of Motion
Intuitive concept of force. Inertia, Newton’s first law of
motion; momentum and Newton’s second law of motion; impulse; Newton’s third law
of motion. Law of conservation of linear momentum and its applications.
Equilibrium of concurrent forces. Static and kinetic friction,
laws of friction, rolling friction, lubrication.
Dynamics of uniform circular motion: Centripetal force, examples
of circular motion (vehicle on level circular road, vehicle on banked road).
Unit IV: Work, Energy and Power
Work done by a constant force and a variable force; kinetic
energy, work-energy theorem, power.
Notion of potential energy, potential energy of a spring,
conservative forces; conservation of mechanical energy (kinetic and potential
energies); non-conservative forces; motion in a vertical circle, elastic and
inelastic collisions in one and two dimensions.
Unit V: Motion of System of Particles and Rigid Body
Centre of mass of a two-particle system, momentum conservation
and centre of mass motion. Centre of mass of a rigid body; centre of mass of
uniform rod. Moment of a force, torque, angular momentum, conservation of
angular momentum with some examples.
Equilibrium of rigid bodies, rigid body rotation and equation of
rotational motion, comparison of linear and rotational motions; moment of
inertia, radius of gyration. Values of M.I. for simple geometrical objects (no
derivation). Statement of parallel and perpendicular axes theorems and their
Unit VI: Gravitation
Kepler’s laws of planetary motion. The universal law of
gravitation. Acceleration due to gravity and its variation with altitude and
depth. Gravitational potential energy; gravitational potential. Escape velocity,
orbital velocity of a satellite. Geostationary satellites.
Unit VII: Properties of Bulk Matter
Elastic behaviour, Stress-strain relationship, Hooke’s law,
Young’s modulus, bulk modulus, shear, modulus of rigidity, poisson’s ratio;
Pressure due to a fluid column; Pascal’s law and its
applications (hydraulic lift and hydraulic brakes).Effect of gravity on fluid
Viscosity, Stokes’ law, terminal velocity, Reynold’s number,
streamline and turbulent flow. Critical velocity, Bernoulli’s theorem and its
Surface energy and surface tension, angle of contact, excess
of pressure, application of surface tension ideas to drops, bubbles and
Heat, temperature, thermal expansion; thermal expansion of
solids, liquids, and gases. Anomalous expansion. Specific heat capacity: Cp , Cv
– calorimetry; change of state – latent heat.
Heat transfer – conduction and thermal conductivity,
convection and radiation. Qualitative ideas of Black Body Radiation, Wein’s
displacement law, and Green House effect.
Newton’s law of cooling and Stefan’s law.
Unit VIII: Thermodynamics
Thermal equilibrium and definition of temperature (zeroth law of
Thermodynamics). Heat, work and internal energy. First law of thermodynamics.
Isothermal and adiabatic processes.
Second law of thermodynamics: Reversible and irreversible
processes. Heat engines and refrigerators.
Unit IX: Behaviour of Perfect Gas and Kinetic Theory
Equation of state of a perfect gas, work done on compressing a
Kinetic theory of gases: Assumptions, concept of pressure.
Kinetic energy and temperature; rms speed of gas molecules; degrees of freedom,
law of equipartition of energy (statement only) and application to specific heat
capacities of gases; concept of mean free path, Avogadro’s number.
Unit X: Oscillations and Waves
Periodic motion – period, frequency, displacement as a
function of time. Periodic functions. Simple harmonic motion (SHM) and its
equation; phase; oscillations of a spring – restoring force and force constant;
energy in SHM – kinetic and potential energies; simple pendulum – derivation of
expression for its time period; free, forced and damped oscillations
(qualitative ideas only), resonance. Wave motion. Longitudinal and transverse
waves, speed of wave motion. Displacement relation for a progressive wave.
Principle of superposition of waves, reflection of waves, standing waves in
strings and organ pipes, fundamental mode and harmonics. Beats. Doppler effect.
Total Periods 60
1. To measure diameter of a small spherical/cylindrical body
using Vernier callipers.
2. To measure internal diameter and depth of a given
beaker/calorimeter using Vernier callipers and hence find its volume.
3. To measure diameter of a given wire using screw gauge.
4. To measure thickness of a given sheet using screw gauge.
5. To measure volume of an irregular lamina using screw gauge.
6. To determine radius of curvature of a given spherical surface
by a spherometer.
7. To determine the mass of two different objects using a beam
8. To find the weight of a given body using parallelogram law of
9. Using a simple pendulum, plot L-T and L-T2 graphs. Hence find
the effective length of a second’s pendulum using appropriate graph.
10. To study the relationship between force of limiting friction
and normal reaction and to find the coefficient of friction between a block and
a horizontal surface.
11. To find the downward force, along an inclined plane, acting
on a roller due to gravitational pull of the earth and study its relationship
with the angle of inclinati (θ) by plotting graph between force and sin θ.
1. To make a paper scale of given least count, e.g. 0.2 cm, 0.5
2. To determine mass of a given body using a metre scale by
principle of moments.
3. To plot a graph for a given set of data, with proper choice
of scales and error bars.
4. To measure the force of limiting friction for rolling of a
roller on a horizontal plane.
5. To study the variation in the range of a jet of water with
the angle of projection.
6. To study the conservation of energy of a ball rolling down on
inclined plane (using a double inclined plane).
7. To study dissipation of energy of a simple pendulum by
plotting a graph between square of amplitude and time.
1. To determine Young’s modulus of elasticity of the material of
a given wire.
2. To find the force constant of a helical spring by plotting a
graph between load and extension.
3. To study the variation in volume with pressure for a sample
of air at constant temperature by plotting graphs between P and V, and between P
4. To determine the surface tension of water by capillary rise
5. To determine the coefficient of viscosity of a given viscous
liquid by measuring the terminal velocity of a given spherical body.
6. To study the relationship between the temperature of a hot
body and time by plotting a cooling curve.
7. To determine specific heat capacity of a given (i) solid (ii)
liquid, by method of mixtures.
8. (i) To study the relation between frequency and length of a
given wire under constant tension using sonometer.
(ii) To study the relation between the length of a given wire and tension for
constant frequency using sonometer.
9. To find the speed of sound in air at room temperature using a
resonance tube by two resonance positions.
1. To observe change of state and plot a cooling curve for
2. To observe and explain the effect of heating on a bi-metallic
3. To note the change in level of liquid in a container on
heating and interpret the observations.
4. To study the effect of detergent on surface tension of water
by observing capillary rise.
5. To study the factors affecting the rate of loss of heat of a
6. To study the effect of load on depression of a suitably
clamped meter scale loaded at
(i) at its end
(ii) in the middle.
CLASS XII (THEORY)
(Total Periods: 180)
Unit I: Electrostatics
Electric charges and their conservation. Coulomb’s law – force
between two point charges, forces between multiple charges; superposition
principle and continuous charge distribution.
Electric field, electric field due to a point charge, electric
field lines; electric dipole, electric field due to a dipole; torque on a dipole
in a uniform electric field.
Electric flux, statement of Gauss’s theorem and its applications
to find field due to infinitely long straight wire, uniformly charged infinite
plane sheet and uniformly charged thin spherical shell (field inside and
Electric potential, potential difference, electric potential due
to a point charge, a dipole and system of charges; equipotential surfaces,
electrical potential energy of a system of two point charges and of electric
dipoles in an electrostatic field.
Conductors and insulators, free charges and bound charges inside
a conductor. Dielectrics and electric polarisation, capacitors and capacitance,
combination of capacitors in series and in parallel, capacitance of a parallel
plate capacitor with and without dielectric medium between the plates, energy
stored in a capacitor, Van de Graaff generator.
Unit II: Current Electricity
Electric current, flow of electric charges in a metallic
conductor, drift velocity and mobility, and their relation with electric
current; Ohm’s law, electrical resistance, V-I characteristics (linear and
non-linear), electrical energy and power, electrical resistivity and
Carbon resistors, colour code for carbon resistors; series and
parallel combinations of resistors; temperature dependence of resistance.
Internal resistance of a cell, potential difference and emf of a
cell, combination of cells in series and in parallel.
Kirchhoff ’s laws and simple applications. Wheatstone bridge,
Potentiometer – principle and applications to measure potential
difference, and for comparing emf of two cells; measurement of internal
resistance of a cell.
Unit III: Magnetic Effects of Current and Magnetism
Concept of magnetic field, Oersted’s experiment. Biot -
Savart law and its application to current carrying circular loop.
Ampere’s law and its applications to infinitely long straight
wire, straight and toroidal solenoids. Force on a moving charge in uniform
magnetic and electric fields. Cyclotron.
Force on a current-carrying conductor in a uniform magnetic
field. Force between two parallel currentcarrying conductors – definition of
ampere. Torque experienced by a current loop in a magnetic field; moving coil
galvanometer – its current sensitivity and conversion to ammeter and voltmeter.
Current loop as a magnetic dipole and its magnetic dipole
moment. Magnetic dipole moment of a revolving electron. Magnetic field intensity
due to a magnetic dipole (bar magnet) along its axis and perpendicular to its
axis. Torque on a magnetic dipole (bar magnet) in a uniform magnetic field; bar
magnet as an equivalent solenoid, magnetic field lines; Earth’s magnetic field
and magnetic elements.
Para-, dia- and ferro - magnetic substances, with examples.
Electromagnets and factors affecting their strengths.
Unit IV: Electromagnetic Induction and Alternating Currents
Electromagnetic induction; Faraday’s law, induced emf and
current; Lenz’s Law, Eddy currents. Self and mutual inductance.
Alternating currents, peak and rms value of alternating
current/voltage; reactance and impedance; LC oscillations (qualitative treatment
only), LCR series circuit, resonance; power in AC circuits, wattless current.
AC generator and transformer.
Unit V: Electromagnetic Waves
Need for displacement current.
Electromagnetic waves and their characteristics (qualitative
ideas only). Transverse nature of electromagnetic waves.
Electromagnetic spectrum (radio waves, microwaves, infrared,
visible, ultraviolet, x-rays, gamma rays) including elementary facts about their
Unit VI: Optics
Reflection of light, spherical mirrors, mirror formula. Refraction of light,
total internal reflection and its applications, optical fibres, refraction at
spherical surfaces, lenses, thin lens formula, lens-maker’s formula.
Magnification, power of a lens, combination of thin lenses in contact
combination of a lens and a mirror. Refraction and dispersion of light through a
Scattering of light – blue color of the sky and reddish appearance of the sun
at sunrise and sunset. Optical instruments: Human eye, image formation and
accommodation, correction of eye defects (myopia and hypermetropia) using
Microscopes and astronomical telescopes (reflecting and refracting) and their
magnifying powers. Wave optics: Wave front and Huygens’ principle, reflection
and refraction of plane wave at a plane surface using wave fronts.
Proof of laws of reflection and refraction using Huygens’ principle.
Interference, Young’s double hole experiment and expression for fringe width,
coherent sources and sustained interference of light.
Diffraction due to a single slit, width of central maximum.
Resolving power of microscopes and astronomical telescopes. Polarisation,
plane polarised light; Brewster’s law, uses of plane polarised light and
Unit VII: Dual Nature of Matter and Radiation
Photoelectric effect, Hertz and Lenard’s observations;
Einstein’s photoelectric equation – particle nature of light.
Matter waves – wave nature of particles, de Broglie relation.
Davisson-Germer experiment (experimental details should be omitted; only
conclusion should be explained.)
Unit VIII: Atoms and Nuclei
Alpha - particle scattering experiment; Rutherford’s model of
atom; Bohr model, energy levels, hydrogen spectrum. Composition and size of
nucleus, atomic masses, isotopes, isobars; isotones.
Radioactivity – alpha, beta and gamma particles/rays and their
properties; radioactive decay law. Mass-energy relation, mass defect; binding
energy per nucleon and its variation with mass number; nuclear fission and
Unit IX: Electronic Devices
Energy bands in solids (qualitative ideas only), conductors,
insulators and semiconductors; semiconductor diode – I-V characteristics in
forward and reverse bias, diode as a rectifier; I-V characteristics of LED,
photodiode, solar cell, and Zener diode; Zener diode as a voltage regulator.
Junction transistor, transistor action, characteristics of a transistor;
transistor as an amplifier (common emitter configuration) and oscillator. Logic
gates (OR, AND, NOT, NAND and NOR). Transistor as a switch.
Unit X: Communication Systems
Elements of a communication system (block diagram only);
bandwidth of signals (speech, TV and digital data); bandwidth of transmission
medium. Propagation of electromagnetic waves in the atmosphere, sky and space
wave propagation. Need for modulation. Production and detection of an
Total Periods 60
1. To find resistance of a given wire using metre bridge and
hence determine the specific resistance of its material.
2. To determine resistance per cm of a given wire by plotting a
graph of potential difference versus current.
3. To verify the laws of combination (series/parallel) of
resistances using a metre bridge.
4. To compare the emf ’s of two given primary cells using
5. To determine the internal resistance of given primary cell
6. To determine resistance of a galvanometer by half-deflection
method and to find its figure of merit.
7. To convert the given galvanometer (of known resistance of
figure of merit) into an ammeter and voltmeter of desired range and to verify
8. To find the frequency of the ac mains with a sonometer.
1. To measure the resistance and impedance of an inductor with
or without iron core.
2. To measure resistance, voltage (ac/dc), current (ac) and
check continuity of a given circuit using multimeter.
3. To assemble a household circuit comprising three bulbs, three
(on/off) switches, a fuse and a power source.
4. To assemble the components of a given electrical circuit.
5. To study the variation in potential drop with length of a
wire for a steady current.
6. To draw the diagram of a given open circuit comprising at
least a battery, resistor/rheostat, key, ammeter and voltmeter. Mark the
components that are not connected in proper order and correct the circuit and
also the circuit diagram.
1. To find the value of v for different values of u in case of a
concave mirror and to find the focal length.
2. To find the focal length of a convex mirror, using a convex
3. To find the focal length of a convex lens by plotting graphs
between u and v or between 1/u and 1/v.
4. To find the focal length of a concave lens, using a convex
5. To determine angle of minimum deviation for a given prism by
plotting a graph between the angle of incidence and the angle of deviation.
6. To determine refractive index of a glass slab using a
7. To find refractive index of a liquid by using (i) concave
mirror, (ii) convex lens and plane mirror.
8. To draw the I-V characteristics curves of a p-n junction in
forward bias and reverse bias.
9. To draw the characteristics curve of a zener diode and to
determine its reverse break down voltage.
10. To study the characteristics of a common-emitter npn or pnp
transistor and to find out the values of current and voltage gains.
1. To identify a diode, an LED, a transistor, and IC, a resistor
and a capacitor from mixed collection of such items.
2. Use of multimeter to (i) identify base of transistor, (ii)
distinguish between npn and pnp type transistors, (iii) see the unidirectional
flow of current in case of a diode and an LED, (iv) check whether a given
electronic component (e.g. diode, transistor or IC) is in working order.
3. To study effect of intensity of light (by varying distance of
the source) on an LDR.
4. To observe refraction and lateral deviation of a beam of
light incident obliquely on a glass slab.
5. To observe polarization of light using two polaroids.\
6. To observe diffraction of light due to a thin slit.
7. To study the nature and size of the image formed by (i)
convex lens (ii) concave mirror, on a screen by using a candle and a screen (for
different distances of the candle from the lens/mirror).
8. To obtain a lens combination with the specified focal length
by using two lenses from the given set of lenses.