How to prepare for Physics entrance exams?

In summary: Many students feel that they have to force themselves to learn a language in a classroom setting. They often find that they don't retain the information as well as they would like, and they also find it more difficult to use the language when they are not in class. For some students, the difficulty in learning a language in a classroom setting can be overcome by studying the language in a different way, such as by using lecture notes or practice quizzes. However, it is important to remember that not all students have this luck, and some students find it more difficult to learn languages in a classroom setting.
  • #1
Saptarshi Sarkar
99
13
I am an undergrad student who will soon give entrance exams for many institutions for grad. The total syllabus of undergrad physics is needed for the tests and it is quite large.

The advice I need is whether I should spend more time learning and revising the concepts and related formulas until I fully understand and remember them or should I just start doing lots of problems after reading the topic once and refer back to the book for the concept or formula when I get stuck?
 
Physics news on Phys.org
  • #2
I'm confused. https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/starting-my-journey-in-pf.981495/.
 
  • Like
Likes Saptarshi Sarkar
  • #3
Vanadium 50 said:
I'm confused. https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/starting-my-journey-in-pf.981495/.

Here in India, you are a Graduate if you complete your 3 years of bachelor's course. I am in the 3rd year of my bachelor's course. We do what is called Post Graduation after we get our Bachelor's degree. The exam that I will give is to get into a Post Graduate Institution. I wrote Grad instead of Post Grad cause majority users here are not from India.
 
  • Like
Likes DEvens and Wrichik Basu
  • #4
The study method that works for you is not necessarily the best for everybody. It is nearly always a trade off between the time you have, the ability you have, and the mark you need to pass. Part of the evaluation process is to see if you can absorb the material in the time available.

Take a look at the time you have spent doing a particular kind of studying. How does that seem to be proceeding? Are you retaining the information? When you look back at material you studied, say, 1 month ago, are you still able to remember most of it?

Some people have excellent short term memory. They can load up a subject just long enough for the test. Then in six months they have forgotten most of it. It means they can pass tests. Maybe they can do certain kinds of work. Maybe it's a problem if they can't get the important stuff into their long term memory. Or maybe it's just fine if they can do 15 minutes of refreshing, and be ready to go.

Personally, I find that I don't really know a subject until the third time I have gone all the way through it. And I mean in globby equation-filled detail. I have to derive every stinking little result and detail three times to be able to retain it. No cheating and looking at my old notes, but doing everything cold. It has meant that I missed a few nights sleep to pass tests. But mostly I retained the stuff that I went through this ordeal over. And it made me a terror on tests. I was nearly always spoiling the curve for everybody else. Because that 2nd and 3rd time through pushed it through to my long-term memory. So in 2nd year I was able to remember the 1st year stuff without having to search through the texts.

Maybe this is not for your. Maybe there are more efficient ways. I find, for example, that learning a new language is a very difficult thing for me. I have not retained much of the French I was required to take in school. And learning Mandarin to please my gf is a slow painful thing. Ni hao. Ni hao ma?

In undergrad, I had a prof who seemed to know the subject cold. He could fill 12 boards full of equations while barely referring to his notes. Which were on the desk on the other side of the room. We joked we needed water cooled pens to keep up with him. But then, maybe that's because he had taught this course 10 times previously. Maybe it's a possible way to learn a subject, by preparing lecture notes on it. Write it up as though you were going to explain it to somebody at the level you were when you started the class. Beware of how long such a project might take!
 
  • Like
Likes Saptarshi Sarkar
  • #5
I tend to agree with @DEvens methods for test preparation except that I include my lecture notes during the 'second phase' of study. After re-reading the textbook and solving homework problems, studying my lecture notes mentally returns me to the lecture; another reason not to skip lectures. I also like to review previous quizzes and tests to emphasize what this teacher regards as central to the subject and how they word questions.

[In response to DEvens later point about learning Mandarin:]

Retaining languages learned in classroom can be a trickier proposition for several reasons. After studying Latin and Spanish for three years in college I could converse in Spanish and even understand some French. After learning conversational Thai years later, Thai words would appear unbidden in my spoken Spanish. Confusing.
 
  • Like
Likes DEvens and Saptarshi Sarkar
  • #6
Klystron said:
After learning conversational Thai years later, Thai words would appear unbidden in my spoken Spanish. Confusing
I know this is a detour from the OP, but I have noticed a similar effect. I took German in high school, all four years. Then stopped (idiot!). Now, when in Spanish-speaking countries I find myself saying "bitte" rather than "por favor." This happens with other words as well. It's like my mind has "english" / "other," with "other" by default that high school German. Weird.
 
  • Like
Likes Klystron and Saptarshi Sarkar

Related to How to prepare for Physics entrance exams?

1. How should I start preparing for Physics entrance exams?

The first step in preparing for Physics entrance exams is to have a clear understanding of the exam syllabus and pattern. Then, make a study plan and stick to it. Start by revising the basics and gradually move on to more complex topics. It is also important to practice solving previous years' question papers and take mock tests to assess your preparation.

2. How much time should I dedicate to studying for Physics entrance exams?

The amount of time you should dedicate to studying for Physics entrance exams depends on your current level of understanding and the difficulty level of the exam. However, on average, it is recommended to dedicate at least 2-3 hours daily for 6-8 months to cover the entire syllabus and have enough time for revision and practice.

3. What are the best study materials for Physics entrance exams?

There are various study materials available for Physics entrance exams, including textbooks, reference books, online resources, and coaching materials. It is essential to choose the study material that is easy to understand, covers the entire syllabus, and has enough practice questions. You can also consult with your teachers or mentors for their recommendations.

4. How can I improve my problem-solving skills for Physics entrance exams?

To improve your problem-solving skills for Physics entrance exams, you need to practice solving different types of problems regularly. Start with basic problems and gradually move on to more complex ones. It is also essential to understand the concepts and formulas thoroughly and know when to apply them. Taking mock tests and solving previous years' question papers can also help improve your problem-solving skills.

5. How can I manage my time effectively during the Physics entrance exam?

Effective time management is crucial during the Physics entrance exam as it can help you attempt all the questions within the given time limit. To manage your time effectively, it is essential to practice solving questions within a specific time frame. Also, read the instructions carefully and prioritize the questions based on your strengths. Do not spend too much time on a single question and move on to the next one if you are stuck.

Similar threads

Replies
12
Views
436
Replies
4
Views
2K
  • STEM Academic Advising
2
Replies
49
Views
4K
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
2
Views
824
Replies
14
Views
1K
  • Science and Math Textbooks
Replies
3
Views
1K
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
1
Views
2K
Replies
15
Views
2K
Replies
5
Views
2K
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
6
Views
1K
Back
Top