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Question to all you Physics majors

  1. Nov 5, 2003 #1
    I am currently a Freshman in college and I am majoring in Biology. While I love it, I have grown very fond of Classical and Theoretical Physics. I did quite well in my High School level Physics course along with AP Physics, however, I am a mediocre math student. I like to study math and do problems, but I don't test well, usually in the B/C range. I was wondering if I have the chance to be a succesfull Physics major even with my shortcomings in math class. I just tend to do better when math is involved with an application, like in Chemistry and Physics. Any feedback is appreciated.
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 5, 2003 #2


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    Well, I'd argue that physical intuition is, in many cases, more important than math skills. Really deep math is only used in a few places in physics, and really only at the graduate level.

    In most cases, thoroughly understanding physical concepts and being able to analyze how a solution will look before you put your pen to paper are more useful than raw math skills.

    - Warren
  4. Nov 5, 2003 #3
    My phys prof had this analysis between math and physics students trying to do physics questions.

    Math students just find an answer and that's end of that.

    Physics students find the answer and analyze if the answer makes sense.

    For physics most of the time you don't need to know the "theory" behind the math, but rather "how" to use the math to do physics.
  5. Nov 5, 2003 #4
    Tawcan is right, physics is generally not concerned with why the math works, only that it does. Not to say math is not important; physics (especially at a more advanced level) relies heavily on mathimatical tools. But, these tools can easily be learned. Without an understanding of the actual physics, the math is more or less meaningless.
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