Syllabus : CBSE Class 12 – Physics

Class 12 Physics Syllabus for 2021-22

Term I

Units Unit Names Marks
I Electrostatics 17
Chapter 1: Electric Charges and Fields
Chapter 2: Electrostatic Potential and Capacitance
II Current Electricity
Chapter 3: Current Electricity
III Magnetic Effects of Current and Magnetism 18
Chapter 4: Moving Charges and Magnetism
Chapter 5: Magnetism and Matter
IV Electromagnetic Induction and Alternating Currents
Chapter 6: Electromagnetic Induction
Chapter 7: Alternating Current
Experiment (08) + Practical Record (02) + Viva (05)

Unit I: Electrostatics

Chapter 1 – Electric Charges and Fields

  • Electric Charges; Conservation of charge, 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 uniform electric field.
  • Electric flux, statement of Gauss’s theorem and its applications to find fields 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

  • 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.
  • 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.

Unit II: Current Electricity

Chapter 3 – Current Electricity

  • 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 nonlinear), 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.
  • 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. (qualitative ideas only)
  • Potentiometer – principle and its applications to measure potential difference and for comparing EMF of two cells; measurement of internal resistance of a cell. (qualitative ideas only)

Unit III: Magnetic Effects of Current and Magnetism

Chapter 4 – Moving Charges and Magnetism

  • Concept of magnetic field, Oersted’s experiment.
  • Biot – Savart law and its application to the current carrying circular loop.
  • Ampere’s law and its applications to infinitely long straight wire. Straight and toroidal solenoids (only qualitative treatment), 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 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.

Chapter 5 – Magnetism and Matter

  • 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, permanent magnets.Unit IV: Electromagnetic Induction and Alternating CurrentsChapter 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.

    Experiments Assigned for Term I

    1. To determine resistivity of two / three wires by plotting a graph between potential difference versus current.

    2. To find resistance of a given wire / standard resistor using a metre bridge.


    To verify the laws of combination (series) of resistances using a metre bridge.


    To verify the laws of combination (parallel) of resistances using a metre bridge.

    3. To compare the EMF of two given primary cells using potentiometer.


    To determine the internal resistance of a given primary cell using potentiometer.

    4. To determine resistance of a galvanometer by half-deflection method and to find its figure of merit.

    5. To convert the given galvanometer (of known resistance and figure of merit) into a voltmeter of desired range and to verify the same.


    To convert the given galvanometer (of known resistance and figure of merit) into an ammeter of desired range and to verify the same.

    6. To find the frequency of AC mains with a sonometer.

    Activities Assigned for Term I

    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 a 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.

    Term II

Units Unit Names Marks
V Electromagnetic Waves 17
Chapter 8: Electromagnetic Waves
VI Optics
Chapter 9: Ray Optics and Optical Instruments
Chapter 10: Wave OPtics
VII Dual Nature of Radiation and Matter 11
Chapter 11: Dual Nature of Radiation and Matter
VIII Atoms and Nuclei
Chapter 12: Atoms
Chapter 13: Nuclei
IX Electronic Devices 7
Chapter–14: Semiconductor Electronics: Materials, Devices and Simple Circuits
Experiment (08) + Practical Record (02) + Viva (05)

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 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: Wavefront and Huygens principle, reflection and refraction of plane waves at a plane surface using wave fronts. Proof of laws of reflection and refraction using Huygens 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 microscope and astronomical telescope, polarisation, plane polarised light, Brewster’s law, uses of plane polarised light and Polaroids.Unit VII: Dual Nature of Radiation and MatterChapter 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.
      • Experimental study of photoelectric effect
      • 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 NucleiChapter 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, Radioactivity, alpha, beta and gamma particles/rays and their properties; radioactive decay law, half life and mean life.
        • Nuclear force mass-energy relation, mass defect; binding energy per nucleon and its variation with mass number; nuclear fission, nuclear fusion.Unit IX: Electronic DevicesChapter 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.

            Experiments Assigned for Term II

            1. To find the focal length of a convex lens by plotting graphs between u and v or between 1/u and1/v.

            2. To find the focal length of a convex mirror, using a convex lens.


            To find the focal length of a concave lens, using a convex lens.

            3. To determine angle of minimum deviation for a given prism by plotting a graph between angle of incidence and angle of deviation.

            4. To determine the refractive index of a glass slab using a travelling microscope.

            5. To find the refractive index of a liquid by using a convex lens and plane mirror.

            6. To draw the I-V characteristic curve for a p-n junction diode in forward bias and reverse bias.

            Activities Assigned for Term II

            1. To identify a diode, an LED, a resistor and a capacitor from a mixed collection of such items.

            2. Use a multimeter to see the unidirectional flow of current in case of a diode and an LED and check whether a given electronic component (e.g., diode) is in working order.

            3. To study the 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 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.



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