2017 Victorian Young Physicists' Tournament
If you want general information about the Victorian Young Physicists' Tournament, click here.
1. Bouncing wet ball: A wet tennis ball bounces along the path. It leaves a series of splotches. The splotches vary in size and spacing. Investigate the pattern and the factors that affect the pattern.
2. Popping body: A body is submerged in water. After release it will pop out of the water. How does the height of the pop above the water surface depend on the initial conditions (depth and other parameters)?
3. Rocking bottle: Partially fill a bottle with some liquid. Lay it down on a horizontal surface and give it a push. The bottle may first move forward and then oscillate before it comes to rest. Investigate the bottle's motion.
The team of three students do all three topics.
A one page A4 document.
Teachers do not need to officially register school teams until the Friday of the first week of term 4. Registration is free. Schools should download the registration form below, which has space for the following information:
- School's Name.
- Teacher's name and full contact details.
- The name of each school team, their year level and the names of the students in each team as well as the topics each student will be reporting on and critiquing.
- Name of person to act as judge and their status *
- The form should also include the principal's signature **
*: The teacher is expected to participate in judging. If a school wishes to register additional teams, then an extra judge is required by each additional two teams. The extra judge(s) can be either another science teacher, a lab tech, a student who has competed in VYPT before or a parent with a science background.
**: This is a large and complex event. It not only involves many people acting in a voluntary capacity, but it is also time consuming to organise. Consequently any withdrawal of a team is a major disruption. So there will be a penalty of $50 to the school for the withdrawal of a team to cover the additional administrative costs.
The form should be forwarded to the Vicphysics either as an email attachment with subject heading, 'Registration: VYPT' or posted to Vicphysics Teachers' Network, PO Box 290, Flinders Lane, VIC, 8009.
Videos of the Tournament
At the 2014 Victorian Young Physicists' Tournament, Terry Tan, then at John Monash Science School videoed the competition as did some of the other teachers. Terry edited the footage into two packages, i) a short one using extracts from different contests to show the key features of a contest and ii) a longer one of one complete contest. See links below.
The Vicphysics Committee appreciates the tremendous amount of work by Terry in chasing up school approvals and then editing the material into these packages.
A round robin will be held during the morning and the early afternoon. Each team will compete in six 30 minute contests, three reporting and three critiquing. Each team member will be required to report on one topic and critique another. So, each team member will have two opportunities to speak.
Date and Venue: TBC
Below are the criteria used in 2016. They will be modified slightly in the coming months for use in 2017 to reflect the following aspects of experimental method:
- the uncertainty of measurements, that is, how accurately a measuring instrudents can be read,
- the need for repeated trials, at least five, when there are sources of possible error, such as using a stop watch,
- A broad range of values for the independent variables, as least seven, so that there are sufficient data points on the graphs to discern a pattern.
- the preliminary data is analysed and graphed to identify whether some data points shold be re-measured and also whether measurements should be taken for additional data values either inside or outside the initial range.
Some students seem to adopt a cursory approach to measurement and the experimental phase of an investigation. This phase is the centrepiece of the investigation and it requires some time. A period or two on data collection is not going to be sufficient to fully explore the topic. Initial data should be analysed promptly while the equipment is still set up so that possible trends can be identified and so further explored and reinforced. Also outliers on the graphs may need closer examination and re-checking with repeat measurements.
There is a trophy for the school of the winning team. Members of the top Year 10 and Year 11 teams receive a book and a cash prize. All other participants receive cash prizes.