1. Not finding help here? Sign up for a free 30min tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Studying Acing a semi difficult physics exam with 2 days of studying?

  1. Apr 10, 2016 #1
    Hello there, I am a student who has not been successful in the past. My GPA is very low, because I have slacked off in the past. I have to get a B in my wave/optics exam on Tuesday 4/12 pacific standard time. I am not smart, and my academic intelligence is below average. My last exam I got a 55% and the class average was 79% and I studied 5 days before the exam. Now, I have two days to study. I have read the material, but am still fuzzy on the concepts. As far as practice problems, they are confusing me. I have done one practice problems and it destroyed my head. The class average is expected to be anywhere from (70% - 79%) and I am struggling and really need a B in this class and to get that B I need to ace this exam and the final. How can I ace this exam. I know the secret is holistic learning and not rote memorization. Can someone pleas give me good examples on how I can really understand the material in depth, so it just sticks with me. I want the material to be like algebra easy within the two days. Is this possible. I would appreciate a positive answer from someone who went through what I am currently going through. Please tell me the best thing I can do to ace this exam (aka the best strategy to use).
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 10, 2016 #2
    Why not try to do more exercise? When you encounter some problems, just try to ask your friends or teachers. I am sure you will learn a lot from it.
    Also, you may watch some online teaching materials like those from Youtube for revision. It may get you more insights.
    Try to be confident in yourself~
     
  4. Apr 10, 2016 #3
    I don't have friends taking this class. My teacher only has little time to explain and I need a lot of explaining to be done and everytime I think it is doable, everything just goes haywire every single time and it makes me hate physics even more than ever.
     
  5. Apr 10, 2016 #4
    That's why I think a tutor is my best option.
     
  6. Apr 10, 2016 #5
    Have you tried one? They can usually lead you a way to do revision step by step...
    Some tutors may teach you in a way may make you even fall in love with physics~
     
  7. Apr 10, 2016 #6

    micromass

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2016 Award

    You're asking this two days before the exam?? Sorry, but that is way too late.
     
  8. Apr 10, 2016 #7

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

    If you said "I have two minutes to study before the test starts", you wouldn't be surprised if your answers were "Sorry, but you can't learn all the material in two minutes."

    I'm afraid the same is true for two days.
     
  9. Apr 10, 2016 #8

    ZapperZ

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2016 Award

    No, it is not.

    You appear to have this attitude that there are short-cuts to learning such material. It is about time you discover the hard truths about this, and about growing up. You could not do it when you studied it for "5 days" before. What made you think you can do this in "2 days"?

    Maybe crashing and burning in this class might be just the kick-in-the-rear-end that you need to re-evaluate what you want to do, and how you go about doing it. If this doesn't wake you up to reality, then nothing will.

    Zz.
     
  10. Apr 10, 2016 #9

    symbolipoint

    User Avatar
    Homework Helper
    Education Advisor
    Gold Member

    "wave/optics exam", seems more advanced than just the beginning Physics series for science & engineering students and by this time, you know what studying means and how to study. In case your Mathematics development is insufficient, you will not succeed in your upcoming test and your next move might need to be to bulk-up in your Mathematics education before repeating the "wave/optics" course.

    Note, you cannot afford to be "a student who has not been successful in the past. My GPA is very low, because I have slacked off in the past" type of student if you are hoping to learn Physcs or any sciences or engineering.
     
  11. Apr 10, 2016 #10
    Do you have a friend in the class. I once needed to ace a final to pass Chemistry. I had a friend who was a solid B+ student. It was our last final, and he told me he wanted to pull off all stops for his one. He and I went into a empty auditorium at 6:00 and did not emerge until the final at 9:00 in the morning each day. I prepared for this marathon studying chemistry so I did not come in cold, but I did not know Chemistry like my friend did. In the beginning we would ask each other questions, and he answered the questions better. We studied the material over and over. At about 4:00 in the morning, I realized I was better prepared than even my friend was. He told me at about 4:00 in the morning, that he felt I was prepared and I would do even better than he did. I had more confidence after that point..
    I do not no what grade he ended up with. I figure I needed a B just to pass. When I got my final grade, I passed (and it wasn't even close). I figured I got an A. I saw the professor later that summer, and he told me I did extremely well on the final.
    I do not recommend pulling an all nighter before and exam, and I never did this again. If you can work with someone who knows the subject much better, and most important, be ready to pull your weight.
    (Because if he or she feels he is not getting anything out of it, he is going to leave to study alone.) A co-worker told me he was in a study group of three, and when one of the members did not contribute. The two of them yawned and said they felt prepared and adjourned. After they ditched the third member, the two of them met in the library an hour later to study . Academic life is tough, and no place for slackers.
     
  12. Apr 11, 2016 #11

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

    You would have thought that someone with 2 days to go would be checking the replies often. Nope. Roughly half the time has passed, and he's not been back to read the replies.
     
  13. Apr 11, 2016 #12
    well if you can add the book and topics that will be covered in the test, i might be able to tell you what to expect and few hints n tips. I took it last semester, n was lost for the first part of the semester but later did lot of self studying n really enjoyed it. But i do like physics n do not slack n that might just be the difference.
     
  14. Apr 12, 2016 #13

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

    And now the test is over and he never came back to read the answers.
     
  15. Apr 14, 2016 #14

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

    Oh boo hoo hoo.

    You were looking for magic. It's not our fault that there's no way to learn other than by putting the work in, and if you don't put the work in, you won't do well. "I did one practice problem". Wow. One whole problem.

    Working one problem, and asking for miracle advice two days before (and then not coming back to read the answers) is not going to cut it. If it makes you sad, that's too bad. It's the truth.
     
  16. Apr 15, 2016 #15

    symbolipoint

    User Avatar
    Homework Helper
    Education Advisor
    Gold Member

    A member tried to be generous and another was very truthful. Those are the best advice that can be expected.
     
  17. Apr 15, 2016 #16

    symbolipoint

    User Avatar
    Homework Helper
    Education Advisor
    Gold Member

    That is just foolish. Learning Physics concepts and problem-solving skills for those topics requires very strong focus and repetition over many weeks at a time. A student cannot "slack off" for several weeks and then learn to handle the needed material within two days for a test.
     
  18. Apr 15, 2016 #17

    micromass

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2016 Award

    Well, not sure why you made the thread then if you already knew the answer... But sure, go ahead and do holistic learning with everything so you can do everything 2 days before the exam. Let's see how far it gets you.
     
  19. Apr 15, 2016 #18
    If you dont want this type of answer, then you have to learn to be realistic to yourself before anyone else gets the chance to be. I am not trying to offend you, I just mean it as an honest piece of advise.
     
  20. Apr 15, 2016 #19
    Then why do only certain individuals have the ability to do so and most of us don't?
     
  21. Apr 15, 2016 #20

    symbolipoint

    User Avatar
    Homework Helper
    Education Advisor
    Gold Member

    Maybe a few very rare individuals are lazy geniuses. Do not try to expect this of yourself (being a genius). Most people are not. WORK HARD FROM START TO FINISH. Spend MORE time, not less time.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?
Draft saved Draft deleted



Similar Discussions: Acing a semi difficult physics exam with 2 days of studying?
Loading...