Physics lessons on PF

would it be possible to have some of the more knolegable members put togather lessons in their area(s) of expertise and then have a mod or admin sticky it? personally, i think it would not only be a good tool to help people learn, but it would set physicsforums apart from everyone else.
 

Danger

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yourdadonapogostick said:
it would set physicsforums apart from everyone else.
Physics Forums is already apart from everyone else. :biggrin:
 
yea, you have to pay for what is free in other forums.
 

Moonbear

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You don't have to pay to be a member here. Contributorship is voluntary, but comes with perks to encourage it. The main mission of the site is science education and homework help, and we do that extremely well.

Providing lessons is beyond the scope of what we do here and take a lot of effort to prepare. Some folks have been working on some basic "FAQ" type help for the general physics homework questions we get often, and some folks have things in their journals along the lines of career advice, and last I checked, they were working through a book as a group over in the philosophy forums, but we generally expect that people coming here are receiving formal education elsewhere and are seeking something other than lectures when they come here. You can learn a lot just from reading the threads in many of the forums here if you don't have your own questions yet.
 
what you learn from reading threads is incomplete. say you read a thread on how to differentiate a function. if you didn't know that there was more to it, you would think "wow, i know differential calculus."
 

Tom Mattson

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Internet forums are great for discussing things with other people from around the world, but they are no substitute for reading a textbook and burning the midnight oil solving problems.
 

Astronuc

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yourdadonapogostick said:
what you learn from reading threads is incomplete.
PhysicsForums is complementary to the already vast resources on the internet. Most who come here already have access to high school or college courses, as well as textbooks. PF even has a section recommending textbooks in mathematics and science subjects.

I concur with Danger, PF is already apart from everyone else!

Moonbear is quite right - lessons take a lot of preparation and time. The threads on specific topics are extremely valuable. Along the lines of the journals Moonbear mentioned, I would point to marlon's and ZapperZ's journals and the thread <ZapperZ's "So You Want To Be A Physicist"> in the Academic & Career Guidance Forum.
 
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I am willing to explain certain concepts of physics but do not expect a full lesson. Like others have already stated, that just takes too much time. we work via the FAQ principle. I would like to set up some kind of physics glossary though but again that requires lots of time to do it properly...time i do not have for the moment...

regards
marlon
 

ZapperZ

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yourdadonapogostick said:
what you learn from reading threads is incomplete. say you read a thread on how to differentiate a function. if you didn't know that there was more to it, you would think "wow, i know differential calculus."
If you are using an internet open forum as your primary source of information in forming your knowledge, I would be really worried if I were you.

All of the good work being done on here are still done voluntarily, and despite the best of intentions, no one is going over everything meticulously to guarantee the correctness of what you read. As good as PF is (and it is at the top of the heap as far as I'm concerned), one should NEVER use it as a primary source of established, valid info, especially on physics.

Zz.
 

arildno

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Here's your first lesson (in English):
yourdadonapogostick said:
Would it be possible to have some of the more knowledgeable members put together lessons in their area(s) of expertise and then have a mod or admin sticky it? Personally, I think it would not only be a good tool to help people learn, but it would set physicsforums apart from everyone else.
 

Moonbear

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marlon said:
I am willing to explain certain concepts of physics but do not expect a full lesson. Like others have already stated, that just takes too much time. we work via the FAQ principle. I would like to set up some kind of physics glossary though but again that requires lots of time to do it properly...time i do not have for the moment...

regards
marlon
:confused: Wasn't there a glossary created around here somewhere? Were there too few contributions to it and it got tossed, or is the link to it hiding somewhere?

yourdadonapogostick said:
what you learn from reading threads is incomplete. say you read a thread on how to differentiate a function. if you didn't know that there was more to it, you would think "wow, i know differential calculus."
I don't think anyone expects to have learned all of differential calculus from reading a thread on one question about it. It's meant to supplement your knowledge from a proper course on the subject. No sticky post is going to be a complete course on the subject either. Why would we prepare lessons in sticky threads when there are plenty of textbooks available that do that job well already? How could we expect to cover the material in a 1000+ page text in a single sticky post in any way that would be better than referring directly to the textbook? Once you're beyond the stage where textbooks are useful, you will know how to learn on your own and will rely more on journal articles to continually update your knowledge, and while discussion of the content of those articles is great as a thread topic, even courses at the graduate level that use those articles as a foundation for the lessons don't include much lecture and instead focus much more on group discussion as well.
 

robphy

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Moonbear said:
:confused: Wasn't there a glossary created around here somewhere? Were there too few contributions to it and it got tossed, or is the link to it hiding somewhere?
https://www.physicsforums.com/glossaire.php [Broken]
 
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dextercioby

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@OP:Trust me,i learnt a lot by reading threads on PF.So be happy with what we can offer now.We can't provide more.

Daniel.
 

Lisa!

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we already have some Classes in GD:
TheTeacher , The Name Of the Class
Danger , How to be hulmorist
Astronuc , How to be nice and polite
wolram , How to see the world beautiful and be hopeful to future


But unfortunately students don't take them serious or perhaps they have another problem!


yourdadonapogostick said:
would it be possible to have some of the more knolegable members put togather lessons in their area(s) of expertise and then have a mod or admin sticky it? personally, i think it would not only be a good tool to help people learn, but it would set physicsforums apart from everyone else.
I think you ought to ask them to introduce some useful books in every area you like and then ask them to help you if you get into any question or problem!
Most of time,just checking different threads helps alot.when people are explaining sth, you can easily learn lots of things about the subject.
 
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Moonbear

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robphy said:
https://www.physicsforums.com/glossaire.php [Broken]
Do you just have it bookmarked, or am I sitting here staring at some blatantly obvious link to the glossary and not seeing it? With 175 entries, it's reasonably sized to make more prominent. Perhaps it should show up in either Quick Links or in the drop-down (up?) navigation menu down at the bottom of the page? Unless it's in there and I didn't see it.
 
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robphy

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Moonbear said:
Do you just have it bookmarked, or am I sitting here staring at some blatantly obvious link to the glossary and not seeing it? With 175 entries, it's reasonably sized to make more prominent. Perhaps it should show up in either Quick Links or in the drop-down (up?) navigation menu down at the bottom of the page? Unless it's in there and I didn't see it.
I remembered the announcment of a "glossary".
So, I did a search for it.

(At the announcement, I thought about a few words but never submitted it. Maybe this discussion will revive it.)
 
The link is called "terms" in the blue nav bar above, next to the blog link.
 
you guys keep telling me that there are sections that reccomend textbooks. textbooks are rather expensive(as far as books go). this would be a free source of information. i also think that you overestimate the time required. if you are taking a class, just post therelavant parts of your notes.
 

dextercioby

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There are thousands of FREE notes on physics online.Any american college/university has lecture notes online.*

Just check the MIT Open CourseWare.

Daniel.

*Check the Physics Napster sticky thread in General Physics.
 

Astronuc

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yourdadonapogostick said:
would it be possible to have some of the more knolegable members put togather lessons in their area(s) of expertise
How comprehensive a lesson? It could be as simple as how to solve a first-order ODE, or as complicated as a full college course, say on the irradiation effects of materials ( I could right a textbook on that subject alone - several hundred pages long).

In addition to what Daniel posted about MIT OpenCourseWare there are sites such as www.wikipedia.org and scienceworld.wolfram.com

yourdadonapogostick said:
you guys keep telling me that there are sections that reccomend textbooks. textbooks are rather expensive(as far as books go). this would be a free source of information. i also think that you overestimate the time required. if you are taking a class, just post therelavant parts of your notes.
Yes, we recommend textbooks, and yes they are expensive, because they require a lot of research and review for accuracy and quality. As for free - there is 'no free lunch'.

We gladly donate our time to PF and share our expertise. Be thankful that so many are so willing to contribute. :smile:

Having taught university courses and professional courses, I am sure that none of us is under-estimating the time. :smile:
 

Moonbear

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yourdadonapogostick said:
you guys keep telling me that there are sections that reccomend textbooks. textbooks are rather expensive(as far as books go). this would be a free source of information. i also think that you overestimate the time required. if you are taking a class, just post therelavant parts of your notes.
If all you want is someone's class notes, then you're going to get what you pay for. I've seen many students' notes and they are generally not very useful if you have not sat through the lecture. Plus, we would then require the time of the mentors to read through all those notes to check for accuracy here; they have plenty of other things to do around here already and don't need any more tasks to take on. Remember, the professionals around here are volunteering time, but we have real jobs that we need to do that take up the rest of our days. Even my own lecture outline that I use in preparing my lecture would be useless to a student because I don't need to write down every detail of what I will say; an outline just keeps me on topic and organized.

Preparing for a lecture can take many hours, and it's not free. When I lecture and spend time preparing material for the lecture, I am being paid through students' tuition money for my time (their tuition costs a lot more than those textbooks do too). Those of us with the teaching experience that it would take to prepare a decent lesson know how long it takes to prepare a lesson.

Yes, textbooks are expensive, but as Astronuc pointed out, that's because they contain a lot of material that has taken a long time to thoroughly research and write about in a way that is clear to the reader. They can take a team of authors several years to write.

This site also does not operate free of expenses. That is why people are requested to be contributors or put up with advertisements, because maintaining servers is expensive.

You're very new here. Why don't you take time to get to know the site before starting to demand changes that aren't consistent with our goals. One reason this site is such a great place is that we pride ourselves on quality, which means we will not be tossing out haphazardly written, poorly thought-out "lessons" just to add to the quantity of information on the site. You'll learn a lot if you spend some time asking questions about the material you are already taking classes on.
 

dextercioby

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Yet your suggestions a couple of days after signing in surely sounded gutsy.I hope you got the point.

Daniel.
 

Tom Mattson

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As a matter of fact it is my intention to do what yourdadonapogos is asking for, but not just now. The problem is that tutorial threads take a lot of effort, and real life tends to get in the way. I once attempted to start tutorials on logic and special relativity, only to have them fall by the wayside due to my own work. When I returned, the participants had lost interest.

I intend to start a definitive discussion thread on special relativity, synthesizing all the relevant information from all my sources. But I am not going to begin posting until all the notes are typed up. That will guarantee that there are no long gaps in time, because all I'll have to do is copy, paste, and then answer questions. I might also try to do the same with calculus, since I'm teaching that. But even though I'm teaching it, it is still no trivial task to type up the lecture notes in full detail.

The closest thing to lessons that I have going on right now is my differential forms thread (link in my signature). But I am not giving lessons, I am trying to sort it out myself, because it's new to me. But you might learn something from my dabbling in it.
 

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