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Miscellaneous Questions About Learning Physics.

  1. Nov 22, 2014 #1
    Hello everyone.
    I have few questions to ask you, and I hope you help as much as you can.
    First, I'm high school student in Tunisia (final year/Baccalaureate) and I want to prepare myself in an excellent and remarkable way for the Test ( which includes physics of course ), and the problem is (as you may expect) that I don't have a solid foundation (or basis) in physics that I can build upon it later on.So, in the class (or even when I try understand something by myself) I find myself questioning about everything and even though I understand most of the time that still not satisfies me.
    I've always had that fear, that I wouldn't know everything about a particular subject in that particular time.
    So, I said why not buy some books and try to come back to the basics, study them in about 1 month period (I don't have much more) and then move on and maybe take an edge on my classmates.
    I'm the kind of person that even if I understand something, I am still confused because I don't know the things that it is based on them.That's my philosophy about learning things, and I've paid a huge price on it( I'm 21 and still in Terminal Secondary School).

    I bought 2 books: Physics I for dummies & Physics II for dummies.

    I've begun on Physics I and I've come until chap 3 now. Until now everything is about motion, speed, velocity, acceleration...It's quite easy.BUT, the problem is that I don't study those subjects these year in class:

    Here's our Program in Physics: (Note that I study Physics, Mathematics and everything else in French at school, but that's not a big problem)

    Part I: Evolution of Electric Systems
    1- RC Circuit.
    2- RL Circuit.
    3- RLC / Oscillation
    4- Signals

    Part II: Waves

    Should I study the things I probably don't need so much ( Motion, Forces, Energy ...)
    and then continue and Study what I need ( Electricity, Magnetism, Waves...)? Or I have to change my plan completely?

    I 've set a deadline to complete, Dec 31 2014, so I would be up to date with my classmates after holidays, what do you think? Give me as much advices as you can.

    Ah, For chemistry I bought Chemistry: Concepts and Problems and I completed the first 2 chapters.
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 22, 2014 #2
    From personal experience it's easy to go off on a tangent and end up looking at something that your course does not require you to know. It is interesting, however it doesn't help you progress with your assessed work and can lead to trying to assimilate too much information. I would recommend that if you find something interesting that is not required to be known for the course then you look at it in your free time, but not at the expense of what you need to know to progress.

    In short, I'd really recommend studying and focussing on what you need to know, rather than what you find interesting.

    Just my opinion, good luck!
  4. Nov 22, 2014 #3
    Thank you very much, I appreciate your opinion.

    However, I have a question: What if I needed something from those things that I don't need in doing the things that I need? Do I come back and check for it whenever I feel there is something missing?
  5. Nov 22, 2014 #4


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Did you study them in a previous year? If you didn't, it seems very strange to me that your school would expect you to study the topics below without having studied topics like motion, energy, Ohm's Law, series & parallel circuits, etc.

  6. Nov 22, 2014 #5
    The problem is I don't have those basics that you're talking about: motion, Force, Energy, yes I studied them but I don't remember anything, back in the days when I studied them I was a complete mess
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