Photoelectric effect and moving from A to B.... When originally reading about the photoelectric, i guess i was looking at the electrons a bit classically yet using the quantum model of the photon, but it did appear to make sense when concerning the work function. I thought that when it was struck by the photon, the electron gained the photon's energy and thus began to move with kinetic energy equivilent to the photon's energy away from the atom. However, it would still be attracted to the positive ions making up the atom and thus would start to decelerate - if the kinetic energy was not sufficient then the electron would not escape but if it was then it would escape. This is what I THOUGHT the work function was - this attractiveness which meant that the kintic energy of the electron would be the energy gained from the photon minus this work function. HOWEVER, I have since been told by my teacher and read in my text book that apparently the electron does not actually travel out of the metal - it simply "appears instantaneously outside its surface with kinetic energy equal to the energy of the phton minus the work funtion". So what actually IS the work function then? It obviously can't be what I thought if the elctron does not actually move out of the metal - there would be no chance for the deceleration I mentioned. I also have a second, partially related, question. (though I would prefer my 1st to be address primerily. ) My physics teacher has told me that if I wish to understand how things really work on an atomic level "... ... need to get out of .. [my].. head this stupid idea of things moving from A to B - it doesn't actually happen like that! Electrons in orbitals, atoms as a whole - nothing actually moves from A to B". So what actually happens?! And why do cars, balls, etc, appear to move like that despite being composed of atoms? Thanks in advance.