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Do I fit as a Astrohphysicist?

  1. Aug 28, 2013 #1
    Hello everyone, I'm new to this forum and I have a few questions to ask. First of all I'm incredibly interested in Physics, Math and anything related to Astro (Universe), but the problem comes to math.
    I'm currently a freshman in High school, I'm 16 years old. The problem comes to math because I can't seem to understand it when I wanna study on my own, without any teachers to help me and even if they do help me I will probably ask for help 20 times a lession. So how can I improve my Math skills?, and won't I be able to become a Astrophysicist because of this?

    Please answer my question and apologize my bad english, It's not my primary launguage.

    Is it required for all Scientists/Astrophysicists to have a iq of ≈120-150? I'm not below average for sure.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 28, 2013 #2
    Any serious involvement with astrophysics, just like with physics or astronomy, will require fluency in mathematics. Sorry, you can't get around that.

    I am not sure how we could advise you with regard to your difficulties with mathematics unless you explain what they are.
  4. Aug 28, 2013 #3
    Math is very easy for me as long as I understand it, but the problem is that I canno't grasp tasks that I've never seen before or if I forgot a little part of it, which makes it a lot difficult for me. Otherwise normal calculations are easy for me, just that problem solving is complicated, I never know where to begin when trying to solve it.

    And will it be possible for me to master Mathematics if I really do try hard and ask questions? That's usually what I do in my class.
  5. Aug 28, 2013 #4
    Problems are one thing.

    Concepts are another.

    If you are having difficulties dealing with problems, that just means you need to do more of them. It does take some practice to get up to speed with problems.
  6. Aug 28, 2013 #5
    Ok, I have a mathematic book from school I've gotten today, what should I do if I get stuck on a task that I'm trying to understand/finish? Do I look at the results at the last pages (I tend to learn quicker that way, I'm not writing the answer down without understanding, I'm analyzing it and see if it makes sense compared to my answer) or keep on trying to solve it without help?

    I really do appreciate your help
  7. Aug 28, 2013 #6
    Maybe a change in textbook would be good for you. Try asking some of the academics here which textbook is good.

    There are a lot of resources to learn from. Don't give up on your goal just because you are having trouble at the age of 16. (I didn't get the impression that you were going to give up but I just wanted to add that in)
  8. Sep 1, 2013 #7
    I would keep on trying to solve it without looking at the answers until you run out of ideas, or until you get too frustrated. Just keep it fun! I don't think there's anything wrong at all with looking in the back to get some clues if you get stuck. You might find you want more problems, or that you can't understand some parts of the textbook. If so, you need more books!

    Get down to your local public library, and your school library, and show the librarian the book you have and ask them if they have anything similar. Try and be as specific as possible. If you want to understand, say, trig. better, then specify that to the librarian. They are experts in finding books to suit customers, that's their job!
  9. Sep 2, 2013 #8
    Thanks ALOT, you guys've motivated me a lot, I'm using your tips and it works, I can see a huge improvement since before, now I somehow learn a lot quicker and I'm able to solve problems easier.

    Thank you.
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