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02-01-2013, 02:41 PM   #20
highwhey

Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 6,250
Re: how do I make physics my b*tch?

Quote:
 Originally Posted by shlver Depends on how rigorous the course is. Generally speaking, most calc based and algebra based courses are not that different; just extra material on derivation of equations and dot products, etc. The most general advice I can give is before you sit down and work on a homework assignment, write down all relevant equations(if required memorize and understand all derivations as well) from memory and identify all parts of the equation. When moving to questions, identify the given and unknowns and figure out what you're solving for. You'll find with practice that most problems are very similar to each other.
My math isn't as strong as I'd like it to be but I am making an effort to understand the primary equations and the derived equations. I become frustrated when the book fails to mention the type of problem it is.

Example: I was doing a homework problem involving kinetic friction f(k) and a given angle and initial velocity, the problem was finding out the highest point of a rock with known variables being vi fk angle and a partially covered distance. I eventually googled the problem and everyone labeled it as a conservation of energy problem. I kid you not, the specific chapter pertaining to the homework makes ZERO mention about KE PE or the required work and equations. All I am given by the book is f(k) =coefficient of k and normal force(n). Now I know I can apply projectile motion equation for height but searching for final velocity is where I am getting stuck.

Anyhow, I really appreciate the suggestions. My friend recommended hyper physics website, old school but a great resource.