NABTEB Physics Syllabus

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About NABTEB Physics Syllabus

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This gift is the Physics Syllabus for the upcoming NABTEB exams and in this syllabus, you will see a list of topics to read for your exams, how your exam will be graded, some frequently asked questions, and their answers.

With this syllabus and some practice questions, you have all you need to do well in your exams. Click the download button now to get a copy of this free and much-needed gift just for you.


The aims of the syllabus are to: 

i. Ensure that candidates acquire a proper understanding of the basic underlying principles and applications of Physics.  

ii. develop scientific knowledge and skills which will be the springboard for further scientific studies and activities.  

iii. inculcate in students the general scientific processes and phenomena towards the eradication of ignorance and superstition.  

iv. develop relevant scientific attitudes such as precision, objectivity, initiative, and inventiveness for technological development. 

Marking Guide

This exam will have two papers: Paper 1 and Paper 2 – and will attract a total of 200 marks.  

PAPER 1: will be the theory paper and will consist of two sections, A and B which will last for 2 ¾ hours  

i. Section A: will contain 50 multiple-choice objective questions drawn from all the areas of the syllabus and will last for 1¼ hours for 50 marks  

ii. Section B: will contain Five questions out of which candidates will be required to answer Four questions. 

It will last for 1 1⁄2 hours for 80 marks.  

PAPER 2: will be a practical test which will last for 2 ¾ hours and will contain three questions out of which candidates are to answer any two questions for a total of 70 marks.  

NOTE: Test-of-practical paper will be conducted as an alternative paper to real practical for private candidates during the November/December series. It will last for 2 ¾ hours for a total of 70 marks and will comprise three questions out of which candidates are requested to answer any two questions.

Download NABTEB Physics Syllabus

Best candidates excel because they study smart and hard. Know what’s expected of you.

Download the NABTEB recommended Physics Syllabus

Physics Syllabus for NABTEB Exams

1CONCEPT OF MATTERi. Explain the structure of matter: 3 states of matter and

ii. use the kinetic theory to explain the 3 states.
2FUNDAMENTAL QUANTITIES & THEIR S.I. UNITSi. State S.I. units of fundamental quantities and S.I. units of derived quantities.

ii. Measurement of Length, Mass and Time

iii. Measurement of Area and Volume of of objects
3POSITION, DISTANCE & DISPLACEMENTi. State the differences between Distance and Displacement
4SPEED, VELOCITY & ACCELERATION IN OME DIRECTIONi. Explain Uniformly Accelerated Motion
5MOTION OF BODIESi. Explain motion and its various types.

ii. Explain angular speed in circular motion. Classification of Forces.

iii. Classify forces into field and contact forces.

iv. Friction.
a) Explain Frictional laws

v. Newtons Law of Motion
a) State and explain Newton’s Laws of motion.
6SCALAR & VECTOR QUANTITIESi. Explain the term scalar and Vector Quantities

ii. Addition of Vectors
a) Explain the parallelogram and triangle rules of addition of vectors

iii. Resolution Vectors
a) Resolve vectors into their rectangular components in two dimension
7PROJECTILE MOTIONi. Explain projectile motion and its applications
8MASS & WEIGHTi. Distinguish between Mass and Weight
9DENSITY & RELATIVE DENSITYi. Explain Density and Relative Density
10FLUIDS AT RESTi. Pressure in fluid at rest.

ii. Archimedes Principle
a) State Archimedes principle.
b) Solve problems using Archimedes principle.
c) Determine relative Density using the principle.

iv. Floating
a) State the law of Floatation and explain its applications.
11SURFACE TENSIONi.Define surface tension and state its merits

ii. Discuss its applications and give the factors affecting tension

ii. Calculate problems involving Hooke’s Law
13EQUILIBRIUM OF FORCESi. Define moment of force, couple .

ii. Solve problems involving moments.

iii. State the conditions of equilibrium of a rigid body

iv. Centre of Gravity
a) Explain the centre of gravity of a body.
b) Determine the centre of gravity for some regular and irregular shaped bodies.
14SIMPLE HARMONIC MOTIONi. Define and explain simple harmonic motion.

ii. Explain period frequency and amplitude of simple Harmonic Motion (SHM).

iii. Explain speed and acceleration of SHM.

iv. Explain the energy of SHM, forced vibration and resonance
15ENERGYi. Describe the various forms of energy.

ii. Identify and classify the sources of energy.

iii. State the principles of conservation of energy.
17CONCEPT OF WORK, ENERGY & POWERi. Define work and energy.

ii. Explain potential energy and kinetic energy and conservation of mechanical energy.

iii. Explain power
18SIMPLE MACHINESi. Define simple machine and explain the mechanical advantage (MA), velocity ratio (VR) and efficiency e of machine.

ii. Explain the effects of friction on efficiency
19CONCEPT OF TEMPERATUREi. Explain temperature and its measurement.
20EFFECTS OF HEATi. Describe the effects of heat

ii. Explain thermal expansion

iii. Describe anomalous expansion of water
21HEAT TRANSFERi. Explain modes of heat transfer.

ii. Compare thermal conductivities of different solids and liquids.

iii. Compare radiation and absorption of radiant heat by different surfaces.
22GAS LAWSi. State gas laws and explain the gas laws using the kinetic theory
23HEAT CAPACITYi. Explain heat capacity, specific heat capacity and their determination.
24LATENT HEATi. Explain the concept of latent of state of matter (melting, vaporisation and sublimation)
25PRODUCTION & PROPAGATION OF WAVESi. Describe the concept of waves, production and propagation of waves.

ii. Describe different types of waves.

iii. Properties of Waves
a) Describe and identify properties of waves.
b) Solve problems involving the equation.
26LIGHT WAVESi. Explain sources of light and demonstrate rectilinear propagation of light
b) Explain the reflection of light.

ii. Paraxial Beam
a) Focus, Principal focus.
b) Spherical mirror and Application

iii. Refraction of Light
a) Explain the refraction of light at plane surfaces, rectangular glass prism (block) and triangular prism
b) Explain the refraction of light on curved surfaces: convex, concave lenses

iv. Optical Instruments
a) Describe optical instruments I.E. (applications of refraction).

v. Dispersal of Light
i. Explain the dispersion of white light and production of colours.
27ELECTROMAGNETIC WAVESi. Explain the principles of electromagnetic waves and identify its properties
28SOUND WAVESI. Explain the production of sound waves and description of their properties.

ii. Explain the production of echoes and applications of echo sounding.

iii. Explain musical instruments and its operations.

iv. Explain forced vibrations.

v. Explain vibrations of air in pipes – open and closed pipes
29CONCEPT OF FIELDSi. Explain gravitational, electric and magnetic fields and state their properties.
30GRAVITATIONAL FIELDi. Explain the concept of gravitational field, gravitational field, gravitational potential and escape velocity
31ELECTRIC FIELDi.Explain static electricity. Describe various ways of producing charges and the force between two charges

ii. Explain the concept of electric field

iii. Explain the concept of capacitance, arrangement of capacitors and their app

iv. Capacitor and capacitance
a) Explain the concept of capacitance, arrangement of capacitors and their applications.

v. Current Electricity
a) Explain the production of electric current from cells

vi. Explain potential difference and electric current using an electric circuit.

vii. Electric Energy and Power
a) Explain electric energy and power.

viii. Describe the operations of shunt and multiplier

ix. Define resistivity and conductivity of a material and enumerate the factors affecting electrical resistance of a material.

x. Explain the measurement of electric current, potential difference, resistance E.M.F. and internal resistance of a cell
32ELECTRICAL CONDUCTION THROUGH LIQUIDSi. Explain electrolysis and its applications.
33ELECTRICAL CONDITION THROUGH GASSESi. Explain discharge through gasses, hot cathode emissions and their application
32MAGNETISMi. Explain the properties of magnets and concepts of magnetization
34ELECTROMAGNETIC INDUCTIONi. Explain the concept of electro- magnetic induction.

ii. Explain electromagnetic induction and its applications.

iii. Explain the concept of inductance.

iv. Explain Eddy current, power transmission and distribution
35SIMPLE A.C CIRCUITSi. Explain the graphical representation of variation of e.m.f. and current in an a.c. circuit, peak and r.m.s values of a.c circuits

ii. Analyse series circuit containing resistance, inductance and capacitance abd explain reactance, impedance, vector diagrams, resonance and power in an a.c. circuit
36STRUCTURE OF AN ATOMi. Describe the models of the atom and the limitation of each.

ii. Explain energy quantization.

iii. Explain photoelectric effect.

iv. Explain thermionic emission and X- rays: production, characteristics and applications
37STRUCTURE OF THE NUCLEUSi. Explain the composition of the nucleus.

ii. Explain radioactivity. Identify the types and give examples of radioactive elements.

iii. List radioactive emissions, describe their properties, uses and ways of detecting them.

iv. Explain radioactive decay, half life, transformation of elements by radioactivity and the applications of radioactivity

v. Explain nuclear reactions- fusion and fission.
38BASIC CONCEPTS OF ELECTRONICSi. Distinguish between conductors, semi- conductors and insulators in terms of conduction.

ii. Explain doping of semi-conductors p- and n- type semi- conductors, majority and minority carriers.

iii. Explain I – V characteristics of p– n junction diode and rectification.

iv. Explain modes of operation of transistors and single stage amplifier.

Recommended NABTEB Physics Textbooks

1. Ike, E. E (2014) Essential Principles of Physics, Jos ENIC Publishers.

2. Ike, E. E (2014) Numerical Problems and Solutions in Physics, Jos, ENIC Publishers.

3. Nelson, M (1977) Fundamentals of Physics, Great Britain: Hart Davis Education.

4. Nelson, M and Parker … (1989) Advanced Level Physics (Sixth Edition), Heinemann.

5. Okeke, P. N and Anyakoha, M. W (2000) Senior Secondary School Physics, Lagos, Pacific Printers.

6. Olumuyionwa A. and Ogunkoya O. O (1992) Comprehensive Certificate Physics, Ibadan: University Press Plc.

Download NABTEB Physics Syllabus

Best candidates excel because they study smart and hard. Know what’s expected of you.

Download the NABTEB recommended Physics Syllabus


What topics should I focus on the most for the NABTEB Physics exam?

Some of the topics you should focus on for the NABTEB Physics exam include mechanics, electricity, magnetism, optics, waves, and all topics listed on the syllabus.


How many papers are there in the NABTEB Physics exam, and what are they?

The NABTEB Physics exam typically consists of two papers: Paper I – Theory Sections and Paper II – Practicals.


Can I use a calculator during the NABTEB Physics exam?

Yes, you can use a calculator during the NABTEB Physics exam, but it must be a non-programmable, scientific calculator.


Are there any past questions or sample papers available for practice?

You can find NABTEB past questions booklets in the market or you can practice online. There are lots of websites and apps where you can practice online.


How are marks allocated for different sections of the NABTEB Physics exam?

Paper I will carry 50 marks and Paper II will carry 80 marks.


What should I do on the day of the exam to perform well?

Stay calm and pay attention to the instructions. Do not panic whenever you see a question you don’t know. When you get confused about a question, raise your hand and ask the invigilator for clarification.



How should I manage my time during the NABTEB Physics exam to ensure I complete all sections?

Time management is a very important skill for every exam. To manage time well, ensure you do not spend so much time on a particular question. Once you’re not sure of a question, leave it and answer others then come back to review and cross-check your work 


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