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Hi, i am not quite sure if i am smart enough

  1. May 6, 2007 #1
    Hello there,

    Not too long ago, i have become very interested in physics, i think it was the end of year nine and im just through half way of year 10. Our Physics unit is over now and i managed to get an (A) through an average of two quizzes(15% each) and a leveling assessment(70%). i got 70% overall, which was 1st in the class but only because i tried very hard.

    Im not quite sure if im bright enough to try to become a physicist, how did you know if you could succeed in physics?

    I have to pick my second semester year 10 sciences soon and i really want to do physics, basic maths, and calculus.

    They are quite tough and not sure what my chances are of achieving in them.

    I was also wondering if there are any good information sources that anyone my happen to reccomend for getting a basic understanding on some physics (EG: newtonian mechanics, quantum, optics, relitivity)

    i already hyave a basic understanding in nuclear, newtons laws, and optics. I would just really like to get a grasp on things before i go into second semester physcis and year 11 physcis.

    sorry, one more thing out of this list what would help my skills in physcis and maths, they are subjects on offer to study in year 11:

    calculus- strong like
    applicable maths-strong like
    human biology-average
    physics-strong like
    ancient history.

    would there happen to be any advice on what to study?

    really sorry for such a long post.

    thankyou in advance, any guides or information for people new to physics would help me alot.

  2. jcsd
  3. May 6, 2007 #2


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    Welcome to PF! If you're deciding whether or not you want to study physics later, then you better take some physics now, so take that physics class. You should also take the applied maths and calculus classes, as they are tools that you will require later on. As for the rest of them, with the exception of chemistry, and to a lesser extent the biology classes, none of them will be "useful to a physicist" as such. Just take the ones you enjoy!

    As to whether you are bright enough to be a physicist*, I don't know-- why not ask your teachers for their advice as they know you!

    *I take your meaning of the word "physicist" to be one who studies physics at university as, IMHO, it's a little early to be deciding whether you are capable of being a professional physicist.
  4. May 6, 2007 #3
    thanks alot that was very useful to me :)
  5. May 6, 2007 #4


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    probably 99% of the population are not quite smart enough for physics (at professional level)... most likely including myself.... :smile:. But, since you are only at high school, you shouldn't be too concerned about what is going to happen in 4-5 years time. You will have much to learn in maths and physics, and you will have much better judgement once you have learn more about "what are there to be learnt"... good luck
  6. May 6, 2007 #5
    Don't worry at the high school level. Interest is all it matters and usually will dictate how well you do in a subject.
  7. May 6, 2007 #6
    Actually, some physicists will say that humans in general aren't smart enough to be physicists.

    Engineering is a lot like physics, but a little less abstract, and IMHO a little easier to understand. Plus it's fun 'cause you get to make stuff that does stuff! Of course I'm biased since I'm an engineer.
  8. May 6, 2007 #7
    I'm curious as to how these wouldn't be useful to a physicist? Do we not have biophysicists, geophysicists and physical chemists? Furthermore they broaden the horizons and experiences in terms of what a person may want to do.
    If you like physics, study it, if you find that you don't like it, then go with what grabs you. Don't worry about "capability" if you're passionate enough about it, you'll be able to achieve it. You should be more worried about whether or not physics will become your lifelong passion (even if it isn't in a professional capacity)
  9. May 6, 2007 #8


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    Did you read my post?
  10. May 6, 2007 #9

    Thankyou very much for taking the time to reply to me
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