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lisab

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The math you need depends on your answer to this: How far would you like to go in physics? There are basically two introductory paths: one is at the level appropriate for physical science majors and engineers, the other is for other science majors and general education.

For the first path, you'll need calculus, for starters. You'll want to take this path if you intend to go into more advanced topics on a more in-depth level (i.e., if you want to know how to actually solve problems).

For the second path, algebra and a bit of trigonometry. This path may work if you want to go into advanced topics at a layman's level.

We have a https://www.physicsforums.com/forumdisplay.php?f=160" [Broken] with resources you may find useful.

Good luck!

For the first path, you'll need calculus, for starters. You'll want to take this path if you intend to go into more advanced topics on a more in-depth level (i.e., if you want to know how to actually solve problems).

For the second path, algebra and a bit of trigonometry. This path may work if you want to go into advanced topics at a layman's level.

We have a https://www.physicsforums.com/forumdisplay.php?f=160" [Broken] with resources you may find useful.

Good luck!

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I guess what I want is to have a better understanding of is whats going on at the LHC. I've looked at some essays on what they're trying to do there and I have read a bit about particle collisions in some of the books I've read but a lot of time they show equations and stuff that I just dont understand and that makes it hard for me to understand what and why they are doing.

I'm the type of person that unless I understand the background it is very hard for me to understand the results I tend to just ask myself why that answer is correct or how I know its correct. Take for example calculus (I took some in high school but dont remember any now). I remember learning how to do derivatives but I had a very hard time solving them until I was taught the definition of a derivative and how it was developed. Of course i dont understand any of that now but thats irrelevant.

I guess my point is that I would like to know enough of the math and physics so that I could read things about it and really understand what is being said.

Hope that all made sense...

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I'm an undergrad working in a HEP research group (High Energy Physics, the LHC is in our domain), and I don't understand most of the details or the specifics about the particles themselves, nor do I understand the cool stuff like the relationships between the particles, and various dimensions, and fields that lap into other dimensions and fields that act like molasses and give some particles their mass.

BUT with some special relativity you can at least understand the basics of how they smash particles together...the basic idea that mass is energy and you can build mass from it, that stuff and SR go well together.

Also Special Relativity is really cool, and doesn't need that much math imo.

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