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approximatelysphere

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This year, I’m taking AP physics 2 and I have enjoyed it a lot more than AP Chemistry. I feel that physics is much more mathematical than chemistry and answers how the universe works at the most fundamental level. There also seems to be a lot more logic and understanding from first principles, whereas chemistry seems to be plug and chuck most of the time, at this level at least.

I’ve also thoroughly enjoyed many mathematical topics such as Calculus I and II, intro to differential equations, intro to vectors and matrices, hyperbolic functions, complex numbers, and further integration techniques. High school maths has really made me want to study maths more in depth in university.

Being able to apply some of these maths topics to physics (ie calculus to entropic calculation in thermodynamics and cross products to finding magnetic force vectors) really made me feel that I was understanding nature on a deeper level.

Forgive me if I’m being overly ambitious, but I’m captivated by general relativity and would love to study unification some time in the future.

However, I am worried about choosing physics because I realise that university maths/physics is very very different from high school maths/physics. I’m not sure if I have the intellect to really thrive in physics, as it does have the reputation of being for absolute geniuses.

I am worried that physics may become depressing due to its theoretical nature. Don’t get me wrong: I am absolutely captivated by the theory, but I wouldn’t mind a few explosions here or there once in a while. I also found classical mechanics in AP Physics 1 to be incredibly dull and counterintuitive at times.

Will I enjoy physics more than chemistry in university if I really loved high school maths?

What made you realise that physics was for you? What has been your experiences with high level physics? How different are chemistry and physics in terms of the maths and learning experience involved, if you could comment?