AP Physics 2: Updated Course for May 2025 Exam

AP Physics 2 Updated Course for

Welcome, Physics Enthusiasts, to an enthralling exploration of AP Physics 2! Whether you're preparing for the AP exam or delving into the wonders of electricity, magnetism, and fluid dynamics, get ready for an enlightening journey. The AP Physics 2 Exam for May 2025 has undergone some changes. We have incorporated these changes below. To view changes for AP Physics C Mechanics, click here, and for AP Physics C: Electricity and Magnetism, click here.

AP Physics 2 in Brief

In this blog, we aim to be the go-to guide for students, breaking down the entire syllabus of AP Physics 2 in a concise and engaging manner. From advanced fluid mechanics to the mysteries of electric circuits, we'll navigate the essential principles of physics.

Importance of AP Physics 2

  • Exploring Advanced Physics: It delves into advanced topics, including fluid dynamics, electricity, magnetism, and thermodynamics, providing a deeper understanding of physical phenomena.
  • Critical Thinking Skills: The course continues to hone critical thinking and problem-solving skills through hands-on experiments and theoretical concepts.
  • Application of Physics Principles: Students learn to apply physics principles to more complex real-world situations, fostering practical knowledge.
  • College Credits Opportunity: Success in the AP exams earns college credits, offering a head start in higher education.
  • Versatility in Career Paths: Knowledge in advanced physics opens doors to diverse career paths, from engineering specialties to research and beyond.

Syllabus of AP Physics 2

Unit Name Units Covered Weightage in the Exam
Unit 1: Thermodynamics
  • Kinetic Theory of Temperature and Pressure
  • The Ideal Gas Law
  • Thermal Energy Transfer and Equilibrium
  • The First Law of Thermodynamics 
  • Specific Heat and Thermal Conductivity
  • Entropy and the Second Law of Thermodynamics
Unit 2: Electric Force, Field, and Potential
  • Electric Charge and Electric Force 
  • Conservation of Electric Charge and the Process of Charging
  • Electric Fields 
  • Electric Potential Energy 
  • Electric Potential 
  • Capacitors 
  • Conservation of Electric Energy
Unit 3: Electric Circuits
  • Electric Current 
  • Simple Circuits 
  • Resistance, Resistivity, and Ohm’s Law 
  • Electric Power 
  • Compound Direct Current (DC) Circuits 
  • Kirchhoff’s Loop Rule
  • Kirchhoff’s Junction Rule 
  • Resistor-Capacitor (RC) Circuits
Unit 4: Magnetism and Electromagnetism
  • Magnetic Fields 
  • Magnetism and Moving Charges 
  • Magnetism and Current-Carrying Wires
  • Electromagnetic Induction and Faraday’s Law
Unit 5: Geometric Optics
  • Reflection 
  • Images Formed by Mirrors 
  • Refraction 
  • Images Formed by Lenses
Unit 6: Waves, Sound, and Physical Optics 
  • Properties of Wave Pulses and Waves 
  • Periodic Waves 
  • Boundary Behavior of Waves and Polarization 
  • Electromagnetic Waves 
  • The Doppler Effect 
  • Wave Interference and Standing Waves 
  • Diffraction 
  • Double-Slit Interference and Diffraction Gratings
  • Thin-Film Interference
Unit 7: Modern Physics
  • Quantum Theory and Wave-Particle Duality \
  • The Bohr Model of Atomic Structure 
  • Emission and Absorption Spectra 
  • Blackbody Radiation
  • The Photoelectric Effect 
  • Compton Scattering 
  • Fission, Fusion, and Nuclear Decay 
  • Types of Radioactive Decay

AP Physics 2 Exam Structure

The AP Physics 1 exam for May 2025 has undergone some changes. The updated structure is as follows:

Section I: Multiple-Choice Questions (MCQs)

  • Number of Questions: 40 questions (decreased from 50)
  • Multiselect questions removed
  • Duration: 80 minutes (decreased from 90 minutes)

Section II: Free-Response Questions (FRQs)

  • Number of Questions: 4 questions
  • Duration: 100 minutes (increased from 90 minutes)

Types of Questions:

  • Mathematical routines
  • Translation between representations
  • Experimental design and analysis
  • Qualitative/quantitative translation

Top 10 Majors Backed Up by AP Physics 2

1. Physics and Astrophysics: AP Physics 2 serves as a continuation of the physics journey, providing essential principles for students pursuing majors in physics and astrophysics.
2. Electrical Engineering: The study of electricity, magnetism, and circuits aligns with the curriculum of electrical engineering majors, offering a comprehensive understanding of these principles.
3. Mechanical Engineering: Advanced topics such as fluid dynamics and thermodynamics contribute to the knowledge base required for mechanical engineering majors.
4. Environmental Science: Understanding fluid dynamics and thermodynamics is relevant to environmental science, where knowledge of these principles aids in analyzing environmental processes.
5. Materials Science: The course's coverage of electromagnetism and optics is valuable for students exploring materials science, where an understanding of these principles is crucial.
6. Biophysics: For those interested in the intersection of physics and biology, particularly in understanding electrical and optical phenomena in biological systems, AP Physics 2 provides relevant insights for biophysics majors.
7. Aerospace Engineering: Knowledge of fluid dynamics and thermodynamics is essential for students aiming for careers in aerospace engineering, where an understanding of these principles is fundamental.
8. Computer Engineering: The study of electric circuits and electromagnetism is directly applicable to computer engineering, contributing to success in hardware design and development.
9. Applied Physics: The course aligns with the curriculum of applied physics majors, providing a comprehensive understanding of advanced physics principles.
10. Renewable Energy Engineering: Understanding thermodynamics and fluid dynamics is crucial for students interested in the field of renewable energy engineering, where efficient energy conversion is a key focus.

TutelaPrep’s College Navigator allows students to search for colleges based on their preferred country and course. Not only that, it also provides valuable insights into each college’s specific admission requirements for those exams. Through College Navigator, you can even connect with alumni at your chosen colleges to get a firsthand feel for campus life and academics.


We hope this article helped you with the subject knowledge. Reach out to us by filling out our assistance form if you need any help with the preparations.