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POLL: The BEST Circuit Analysis Textbook & Circuit Analysis Help

  1. Sep 30, 2011 #1
    I am looking for recommendations on the which textbook/resource (though I prefer textbook) provides the greatest understanding and development of intuition in utilizing circuit analysis to solve problems.

    I have the book: "Fundamentals of Electric Circuits" by Sadiku & Alexander, as well as MicroElectronics by Sedra and Smith. I think these are great books (used at Berkeley I believe). Perhaps there are others that offer additional insight.

    However, I am also trying to resolve a greater problem (of my own), in that I am able to read through the chapter and understand the material, but when I get to the homework problems, for the most part I seem to haphazardly attempt to solve the problem. I seem to lack a solid methodology for solving circuits. I understand most people might say "Solve more problems". Yes, I agree with that process, however, here is a typical example: I can work through a problem [takes me way too long], and then given a slightly different variation of the same problem, I get stuck. This tells me I am lacking the intuition necessary to dissect the problem, apply the pertinent analysis techniques, and arrive at the solution.

    Are there any senior Physics Forum's members that can offer some advice. I have a degree in Computer Engineering, and during that time, digital logic seemed second nature to me and did not pose nearly the challenge I am encountering with analog circuitry. So far, it is not necessarily due to the mathematics, rather the visualization of the circuit and it characteristics.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 30, 2011 #2
    If you have no problem understanding the books, then more books might not do you any good. I am a self studier and I buy a lot of books for each topic. But I only buy more when I hit a topic that I don't understand with the books I have.

    I notice you said "I am able to read through the chapter and understand the material". Did you actually write the derivation down step by step following the book? When you only read, you think you understand, but until the rubber hit the road which is writing it out to explain what you understand, you might only think you understand. Never take the formular at face value, derive every single step and arrive to the formula given by the book. If you do that, then you will have a much better understanding.

    When I study PDE and EM, I actually wrote the explainations, deriving formulas into a note book. IF you can write it down, you really understand the material. You'll be surprised how little you really understand when you start writing it out and explain back to yourself. Try this first if you have not, before go get any more books.

    Also there is possibility that the problem in the book is very hard. Books like Cheng and Griffiths in the topics of EM use a lot of problems to cover the material that is not even cover in the text. Particular Griffiths, he really make people sweat it out in vector calculus and people that only have the lower level multivariables calculus will get kill!!! Their goal is to make you sweat it out. If you truly understand the book, you should be able to tell whether it's been covered or not. If the subject is not covered, you should not beat yourself up for not able to solve the problem. From the problem sets I work with, they are supposed to make you sweat it out!!!
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2011
  4. Sep 30, 2011 #3
    I have two books. I rate them above average.
    First one is by Sudhakar and Shyammohan
    Second one is by Van Valkenburg
  5. Sep 30, 2011 #4
    Intuitive remark about circuit analysis: You (should) use nodal analysis a lot more than mesh analysis .
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