Skip to content
IOP Science

Physics Education

About Physics Education


Physics Education™ seeks to serve the physics teaching community and we welcome contributions from teachers. We seek to support the teaching of physics to students aged 11 up to introductory undergraduate level. We aim to provide professional development and support for teachers of physics around the world by providing:

  • a forum for practising teachers to make an active contribution to the physics teaching community;
  • knowledge updates in physics, educational research and relevant wider curriculum developments; and
  • strategies for teaching and classroom management that will engage and motivate students.

Article types

Physics Education welcomes submissions of the following article types:

  • Papers (up to 3000 words): we want papers which are interesting and useful to teachers of physics in schools and colleges. Papers submitted to this section can relate to the teaching and learning of physics, the examining and assessment of physics, new approaches to the general presentation and application of physics in the classroom, and curriculum developments around the world. We also publish papers of general and/or topical interest to physics teachers. We generally expect these papers to be up to 3000 words long (five journal pages). All contributions are subject to peer review by members of the Editorial Board. Authors of papers will be requested to send a small photograph of themselves with brief biographical details.
  • Frontlines (up to 1000 words): this section is for shorter papers which feature good, immediately useful ideas for the classroom or the laboratory. These may be classroom experiments and demonstrations, investigations, equipment, practical work and ways of teaching difficult topics in physics. Contributions should be concise with a maximum of 1000 words (excluding any diagrams, photographs etc). Submissions are subject to peer review by members of the Editorial Board.
  • Directions (up to 3000 words): Physics Education welcomes contributions to its Directions collection. These papers outline issues within, and affecting, physics education both locally and globally. They also present possible solutions to overcome the outlined issues. While being an outlet for the opinions of the authors, arguments and criticisms need to be reinforced with evidence.

Examples of topics that might be suitable include:

  • New ideas from the philosophy of science which would impact on teaching
  • Underlying issues with a specific topic and suggested solutions, e.g. quantum mechanics or energy
  • Global measures of science understanding
  • Recruitment and retention of physics teachers
  • Initial Teacher Training schemes and their effectiveness
  • Implementing strategies to increase diversity
  • Suggestions for new topics that are taught at university level but which should be considered for teaching at school level
  • Suggestions for new topics at school level that teachers have piloted
  • Assessment methods
  • Curriculum design and content

We want papers which are interesting and useful to teachers of physics in schools and colleges. Papers for the Directions collection will often be solicited, but we also welcome unsolicited papers. Contacting the journal staff in advance is usually advisable in such cases. All contributions are subject to peer review by members of the Editorial Board. Authors of papers will be requested to send a small photograph of themselves with brief biographical details.

  • People: the physics teaching community is full of inspiring and interesting people; this section features the schools and the personalities who have made an impact in physics education or, equally importantly, in industry, finance, the media or technology. You are welcome to write in about the people you know and the experiences you have had.
  • Resource reviews: have you seen any resources that you would like to recommend? If so, contact us and you could write a review. Reviews include books, equipment, electronic media, DVDs, television programmes, apps and places to visit.
  • Letters: we publish letters which are of interest to the physics teaching community including short anecdotes, opinions, questions and comments on previous articles or letters. Letters are not normally more than 800 words. If your letter is commenting on a previous article, we will normally ask the author of the commented on article to submit a letter in reply if appropriate. These shall then be published together, if possible.
  • End Results: these are short communications that show classroom physics in a different light: What Happens Next? is a series of short experiments and Signing Off is a light-hearted look at physics teaching.

Special requirements

Smartphone and Arduino papers
Please note that we tend to discourage the submission of Papers where smartphones and Arduinos are directly substituted for standard sensor technology already present in school labs. We do however welcome Frontline articles (less than 1000 words) making use of smartphones and Arduinos in particularly novel ways.

Supplementary material
The electronic version of Physics Education can include extra material as multimedia attachments. Any electronically stored material can be attached, so you can share full resources with the other physics teachers and include exciting illustrations with submissions. Unfortunately we no longer allow the use of any music at all in supplementary material.

Author biographies
For papers and frontlines, Physics Education encourages the inclusion of a small photograph of the author(s) as well as brief biographical details at the end of the article.

Video abstracts
We invite all authors to submit a video abstract with their paper. This does not need to be sent in with the article when first submitted but we must receive this within three weeks of acceptance to avoid delaying publication of the article. More information on video abstracts can be found on our Publishing Support website.

Circuit diagrams
All circuit diagrams within Physics Education should conform to British Standards (BS 3939).

Pictures of children
In some instances, authors may choose to provide figures or video footage containing images of children in their submitted article. To comply with all legal requirements, we have provided some general guidance for authors on our website.


Please note that informed consent to participate should be obtained from participants (or their parent or legal guardian in the case of children under 16) for all research involving human subjects. In addition, informed consent to publish should be obtained from participants (or their parent or legal guardian in the case of children under 16) for all research involving identifiable human subjects.

All submitted manuscripts containing research which involves human participants and/or identifiable human subjects will require an ethical statement.

Peer review

The following summary describes the peer review process for Physics Education, using the ANSI/NISO Standard Terminology for Peer Review:

  • Identity transparency: single-anonymous, double-anonymous (author choice)
  • Reviewer interacts with: Editor

Our Publishing Support website provides more information on our reviewing process as well as checklists in both English and Chinese language to help authors prepare their manuscripts for submission.

If an article is not accepted for publication, we may offer the author the opportunity to transfer their submission to other suitable journals we publish.

Inclusivity and diversity

IOP Publishing recognises that there are inequalities within the scientific publishing and research ecosystems. We are committed to a progressive approach to inclusivity and diversity, and are working hard to eliminate discrimination to foster an equitable and welcoming publishing environment for all.

IOP Publishing follows Guidelines on Inclusive Language and Images in Scholarly Communication to ensure that journal articles use bias-free and culturally sensitive communication. We ask authors to please follow these guidelines in their manuscript submissions.

More information about our work on inclusivity is available on our Open Physics hub.


Physics Education maintains the highest standards of publication and research ethics and is a member of the Committee for Publication Ethics (COPE). Authors are expected to comply with IOP Publishing’s Ethical Policy.

Research data

Physics Education has adopted IOP Publishing’s research data policy. Please check that your article complies with the policy before submission.

Please note that this policy requires authors to include a data availability statement in their article.

For any questions about the policy please contact the journal.

Many research funders now require authors to make all data related to their research available in an online repository. Please refer to the policy for further information about research data, data repositories and data citation.

Open access

Physics Education is a hybrid open access journal. Authors have the option to pay an article publication charge (APC) to publish their article on a gold open access basis under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence. Articles published on a gold open access basis are freely available to everyone to read and reuse immediately upon publication, provided the terms of the licence are followed and clear attribution to the author is given.

Alternatively authors who do not select the gold open access option can choose a green open access route to publication.

For more information on IOP Publishing’s open access policies please see our Open access page. For our author rights policies please see our Author rights page.

Publication charges

Publication on a subscription-access basis is free of charge.

Authors have the option to pay the following article publication charge (APC) to publish their article on an open access basis under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence.

Article publication charge* £2295 €2635 $3165
Reduced article publication charge* for Group B countries** £500 €575 $675
Reduced article publication charge for Group A countries** £0 €0 $0

*excluding VAT where applicable

**eligibility criteria can be found here

APCs only apply to articles accepted for publication; there are no submission charges.

There are no other charges for publishing in Physics Education.

Transformative Agreements

Physics Education is included in our transformative agreements which allow authors from some institutions to publish open access without paying an APC.

Find out if you’re covered by an agreement

If you are covered by an agreement, use our author guide to help you submit your paper.

Countries where we have transformative agreements include:
Austria, Canada, Croatia, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Germany, Poland, The Netherlands, United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, Sweden and Switzerland.

Paying for open access

Various discounts, waivers and funding arrangements are available to support our authors. Visit our Paying for open access page for further details.


Abstracting and indexing services

We work with our authors to help make their work as easy to discover as possible. Physics Education is currently included in the following abstracting and discovery services:

  • CNKI Scholar
  • EBSCO Academic Search Alumni Edition
  • EBSCO Academic Search Complete
  • EBSCO Academic Search Elite
  • EBSCO Academic Search Premier
  • EBSCO Academic Search Ultimate
  • EBSCO British Education Index
  • EBSCO Education Research Complete
  • EBSCO Education Source
  • EBSCO TOC Premier
  • Educational Research Abstracts
  • INIS (International Nuclear Information System)
  • Inspec
  • NASA Astrophysics Data System
  • Scopus

Journal metrics

Back to top