CBSE Syllabus for CBSE Class 12 Physics


Dear Class 12 Physics Students,

In this article, we are going to provide you Syllabus for CBSE Class 12 Physics

CBSE Class 12 Physics 2017-18 Syllabus

CBSE has released syllabus of Class 12 for the academic session 2016‒2017. The syllabus is very much similar to the previous year Physics syllabus.

The key points to note contents in the syllabus as issued by CBSE for Class 12th Physics are:

  • Units and their weightage
  • Some of the topics are much more detailed than previous years
  • Practical exams: Evaluation Scheme and List of experiments are same as before
  • Prescribed books – detailed list of the books is given

Read Also – CBSE Class 12 Syllabus of All Subjects

CBSE 12th Physics Course Structure

UnitChapter / TopicMarks
Chapter-1: Electric Charges and Fields
Chapter-2: Electrostatic Potential and Capacitance
IICurrent Electricity
Chapter-3: Current Electricity
IIIMagnetic Effect of Current & Magnetism16
Chapter-4: Moving Charges and Magnetism
Chapter-5: Magnetism and Matter
IVElectromagnetic Induction & Alternating Current
Chapter-6: Electromagnetic Induction
Chapter-7: Alternating Current
VElectromagnetic Waves17
Chapter-8: Electromagnetic Waves
Chapter-9: Ray Optics and Optical Instruments
Chapter-10: Wave Optics
VIIDual Nature of Matter10
Chapter-11: Dual Nature of Radiation and Matter
VIIIAtoms & Nuclei
Chapter-12: Atoms
Chapter-13: Nuclei
IXElectronic Devices12
Chapter-14:  Semiconductor  Electronics
XCommunication Systems
Chapter-15: Communication Systems


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Detailed description of each topic and sub-topic as covered in each unit in CBSE Class 12 Physics

Unit I: Electrostatics
Chapter-1: Electric Charges and Fields
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 uniform electric field.
Electric Charges: Conservation of charge; Coulomb’s Law-force between two point charges; forces between multiple charges: superposition principle and continuous charge distribution.
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 outside).
Chapter-2: Electrostatic Potential and Capacitance
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.
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 dipole in an electrostatic field.
Unit II: Current Electricity
Chapter-3: Current Electricity
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, metre bridge.
Electric current; flow of electric charges in a metallic conductor; drift velocity, 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 conductivity. Carbon resistors, colour code for carbon resistors; series and parallel combinations of resistors; temperature dependence of resistance.
Potentiometer – principle and its 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
Chapter-4: Moving Charges and Magnetism
Biot – Savart law and its application to current carrying circular loop.
Concept of magnetic field, Oersted’s experiment.
Force on a current-carrying conductor in a uniform magnetic field; force between two parallel current-carrying conductors-definition of ampere, torque experienced by a current loop in uniform magnetic field; moving coil galvanometer-its current sensitivity and conversion to ammeter and voltmeter.
Ampere’s law and its applications to infinitely long straight wire. Straight and toroidal solenoids (only equivalent treatment); Force on a moving charge in uniform magnetic and electric fields.
Chapter-5: Magnetism and Matter
Para-, dia- and ferro – magnetic substances, with examples. Electromagnets and factors affecting their strengths; permanent magnets.
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.
Unit IV: Electromagnetic Induction and Alternating Currents
Chapter-6: Electromagnetic Induction
Electromagnetic induction; Faraday’s laws, induced emf and current; Lenz’s Law, Eddy currents.  Self and mutual induction.
Chapter-7: Alternating Current
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, power factor wattless current. AC generator and transformer.
Unit V: Electromagnetic waves
Chapter-8: Electromagnetic Waves
Basic idea of displacement current, Electromagnetic waves, their characteristics, their transverse nature (qualitative ideas only).
Electromagnetic spectrum (radio waves, microwaves, infrared, visible, ultraviolet, X-rays, gamma rays) including elementary facts about their uses.
Unit VI: Optics
Chapter-9: Ray Optics and Optical Instruments
Ray 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; lensmaker’s formula; magnification, power of a lens; combination of thin lenses in contact; refraction and dispersion of light through a prism.
Scattering of light – blue colour of sky and reddish appearance of the sun at sunrise and sunset.
Optical instruments: Microscopes and astronomical telescopes (reflecting and refracting) and their magnifying powers.
Chapter-10: Wave Optics
Wave optics: Wave front and Huygen’s principle; reflection and refraction of plane wave at a plane surface using wave fronts. Proof of laws of reflection and refraction using Huygens’s principle. Interference; Young’s double slit 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 Polaroids.
Unit VII: Dual Nature of Matter and Radiation
Chapter-11: Dual Nature of Radiation and Matter
Dual nature of 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 & Nuclei
Chapter-12: Atoms
Alpha-particle scattering experiment; Rutherford’s model of atom; Bohr model, energy levels, hydrogen spectrum.
Chapter-13: Nuclei
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, nuclear fusion.
Unit IX: Electronic Devices
Chapter-14: Semiconductor Electronics: Materials, Devices and Simple Circuits
Energy bands in conductors; semiconductors and insulators (qualitative ideas only)
Semiconductor diode: I-V characteristics in forward and reverse bias; diode as a rectifier;
Special purpose p-n junction diodes: LED, photodiode, solar cell and Zener diode and their characteristics; Zener diode as a voltage regulator.
Junction transistor; transistor action; characteristics of a transistor and transistor as an amplifier (common emitter configuration); basic idea of analog and digital signals; Logic gates (OR, AND, NOT, NAND and NOR).
Unit X: Communication Systems
Chapter-15: 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, satellite communication. Need for modulation, amplitude modulation and frequency modulation, advantages of frequency modulation over amplitude modulation.

CBSE 12th Physics Practical Course Structure

Evaluation Scheme and List of experiments for 12th Physics Practical Exam

The record to be submitted by the students at the time of their annual examination has to include:
* Record of at least 15 Experiments [with a minimum of 6 from each section], to be performed by the students.
* Record of at [least 5 Activities with a minimum of 2 each from section A and section B], to be demonstrated by the teachers.
* The Report of the project to be carried out by the students.

Time Allocated – 3 hours.  Max Marks – 30

Two experiments one from each section

8 + 8 Marks

Practical record [experiments and activities]

6 Marks

Investigatory Project

3 Marks

Viva on experiments, activities and projects

5 Marks


30 Marks

List of Experiments: Section A for 12th Physics Practical Exam

1. To determine resistance per cm of a given wire by plotting a graph for potential difference versus current.
2. To verify the laws of combination (series) of resistances using a metre bridge.
3. To find resistance of a given wire using metre bridge and hence determine the resistivity (specific resistance) of its material.
4. To compare the EMF of two given primary cells using potentiometer.
5. To verify the Laws of combination (parallel) of resistances using a metre bridge.
6. To determine the internal resistance of given primary cell using potentiometer.
7. To convert the given galvanometer (of known resistance and figure of merit) into a voltmeter of desired range and to verify the same.
8. To determine resistance of a galvanometer by half-deflection method and to find its figure of merit.
9. To find the frequency of AC mains with a sonometer.
10. To convert the given galvanometer (of known resistance and figure of merit) into an ammeter of desired range and to verify the same.
Activities (for the purpose of demonstration only)
1. To assemble the components of a given electrical circuit.
2. To measure resistance, voltage (AC/DC), current (AC) and check continuity of a given circuit using multi meter.
3. To assemble a household circuit comprising three bulbs, three (on/off) switches, a fuse and a power source.
4. 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.
5. To study the variation in potential drop with Length of a wire for a steady current.
6. To measure the resistance and impedance of an inductor with or without iron core.

List of Experiments: Section B for 12th Physics Practical Exam

1. To find the value of v for different values of u in case of a concave mirror and to rind the focal length.
2. To find the focal Length of a convex mirror, using a convex lens.
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 lens.
5. To determine angle of minimum deviation for a given prism by plotting a graph between angle of incidence and angle of deviation.
6. To determine refractive index of a glass slab using a travelling microscope.
7. To find refractive index of a liquid by using convex Lens and plane mirror.
8. To draw the I-V characteristic curve for a p-n junction in forward bias and reverse bias.
9. To draw the characteristic curve of a Zener diode and to determine its reverse break down voltage.
10. To study the characteristic of a common – emitter npn or pnp transistor and to find out the values of current and voltage gains.
Activities (For the purpose of demonstration only) 

1. To identify a diode, an LED, a transistor, an IC, a resistor and a capacitor from a 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 tight (by varying distance of the source) on an LDR.
4. To observe refraction and lateral deviation of a beam of tight incident obliquely on a glass slab.
5. To observe polarization of light using two Polaroids.
6. To observe diffraction or light due to a thin slit.
7. To study the nature and size of the image formed by a (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.

Prescribed books for CBSE 12th Class Physics
1. Physics, Class XI, Part -I and II, Published by NCERT.
2. Physics, Class XII, Part -I and II, Published by NCERT.
3. The List of other related books and manuals brought out by NCERT

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