How is physics taught and learned. Teaching strategies, class examples and demonstrations; learning resources, career advice, etc. For explicit problems, use the 'homework' tag instead.

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124
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7answers
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Does Earth really have two high-tide bulges on opposite sides?

The bit that makes sense – tidal forces My physics teacher explained that most tidal effect is caused by the Moon rotating around the Earth, and some also by the Sun. They said that in the Earth and ...
10
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6answers
5k views

Linear Algebra for Quantum Physics

A week ago I asked people on this site what mathematical background was needed for understanding Quantum Physics, and most of you mentioned Linear Algebra, so I decided to conduct a self-study of ...
-2
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2answers
31 views

What is the significance of directions when using vector entites ( velocity, acceleration ) in space? [closed]

The role direction if ( up, down), seems understandable when using the vector entities like velocity and acceleration on earth. Because the overall output changes, when the same object goes up as ...
3
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1answer
39 views

Problem books for concept building in applications of Riemannian and other geometries to mechanics

As a student of physics I have learned solving Euler equations for rigid bodies by solving examples and exercises in self-contained books rather than understanding the proofs of Euler equations (I ...
1
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1answer
56 views

Finding a physics-made-simple book… A longshot

Years ago I had a book that explained at a high level a college physics 1 course. It touched in gas, light, gravity and relativity. It was about 250 pages, it didn't use very much math and the ...
0
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0answers
49 views

What knowledge do I need to learn Quantum Physics? [duplicate]

I have a quick question. What prior knowledge do I need to learn and understand quantum physics. For example, what type of math do I need to know, what level of physics, etc.
1
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1answer
769 views

Bimolecular recombination in few words

I'm making a short seminar about VERY broad topic of fullerenes in photovoltaics, but I'd like it to be educational (not just full of words hard to audience to make them think I'm smart). In one of ...
1
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2answers
429 views

Book with solved problems on thermodynamics

I am working on honing my engineering thermodynamics problem solving skills at the undergraduate and graduate level. It would be much help if you could suggest me some good books with solved ...
0
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0answers
37 views

Problem solving books for physics Olympiad preparation? [duplicate]

I'm currently preparing for the physics Olympiad, and I am in need of some good problem solving books in thermodynamics and electrostatics for practice. Can someone suggest some good books? The main ...
0
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0answers
34 views

Mathematician wanting to learn cutting edge physics [duplicate]

I have interest in and wanted to learn modern physics including string theory,relativity,etc. But I'm currently a mathematics major and not a physics major, thus I'm train as a mathematician and not ...
26
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3answers
2k views

The scope of physics, as taught in modern times

I am asking this question based on my recent experience as a physics major at a well-known school of science and engineering. My basic question is, Why does the field of physics (at least at an ...
6
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3answers
2k views

Advantages of Lagrangian Mechanics over Newtonian Mechanics [closed]

Here, I'm going to pose a very serious list of doubts I have on Lagrangian Mechanics. Can we learn Lagrangian Mechanics without studying Newtonian Mechanics? Does Lagrangian help in solving problems ...
2
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1answer
81 views

What is really sought when we purpose Einstein's postulates in Special Relativity?

Special Relativity can be motivated by looking at Maxwell's Electrodynamics and noticing that there is some kind of inconsistency between it and Newtonian Mechanics. Indeed, as Einstein pointed out on ...
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0answers
23 views

What is an overview of secondary school astronomy textbooks for students who have taken some calculus?

I teach mathematics at the secondary level. This year my students have founded an astronomy club. Most have finished two semesters of "college-level" calculus and are familiar with the derivative, ...
5
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1answer
86 views

How to motivate the importance of the spacetime interval

The spacetime interval is a rather important thing in Special Relativity. It allows us to define the separation between any two events as spacelike, timelike or lightlike and more importantly, the ...
1
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0answers
29 views

Undergraduate research project ideas [closed]

I want to work on interesting project on quantum mechanics using the knowledge I gained from studying thoroughly the standard texts(Shankar,Griffith's and had a semester long course up to the level of ...
-3
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1answer
67 views

Do you know the principle which says that connecting two sources of similar kind produces a waste and destruction? [closed]

There is a great article, called commutation cells, which states that you cannot transfer kinetic energy from one container to another immediately, bypassing the potential energy storage. Otherwise, ...
0
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1answer
21 views

What artefacts of the ant on a wire analogy for string theory's curled extra dimensions are due to the analogy breaking down?

I'm trying to understand the ant on a telephone-wire analogy that's used to explain why we might not see the extra dimensions from string theory. I'm quite comfortable with Newtonian mechanics in 3D, ...
-1
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1answer
50 views

Sequence of topics for studying quantum theory (Research strategy) [duplicate]

I am trying to learn about the higher level basics of physics. I want to cover up all that is included in particle physics/quantum physics. Now being in high school, I only know partially about ...
9
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4answers
4k views

Does conservation of momentum really imply Newton's third law?

I often heard that conservation of momentum is nothing else than Newton's third law. Ok, If you have only two interacting particles in the universe, this seems to be quite obvious. However if you ...
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2answers
30 views

Projects to undertake Using Lasers [closed]

I need an economically feasible physics project that would use lasers in any manner preferably with respect to optics for a school projects class XII . Any suggestions are welcome no matter how crazy ...
1
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0answers
39 views

Relevance of pure mathematics vs statistics to physics [closed]

For someone currently studying physics, with an interest in experimental physics, would pure mathematics or statistics be more relevant?
3
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0answers
62 views

Self Learning Quantum Mechanics and QFT, how to? [closed]

I've searched the board and several threads were found, but they all were very old and closed. I'm interested in learning and understanding quantum mechanics, after that possibly also QFT. I have ...
3
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1answer
888 views

What is a quantum field?

I'm just tasting a bit of QFT and want to get started. I got stuck right at the start: what is a quantum field, and how should I look at it? This question can be a follow up of the What is a field, ...
1
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0answers
44 views

Can someone help me to do the math? [duplicate]

This might seems off topic or something, but I am a middle school student and i'm really into Quantum Field Theory and String theory and every video on youtube or article on the internet shows only ...
0
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1answer
35 views

How to consolidate what you've learned? [closed]

I'm reading through two books right now on the topics on quantum mechanics and particle physics. I'd like to know, how does one generally go back and consolidate what they've learned? There are ...
1
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2answers
109 views

Where do I begin in order to study relativity? [duplicate]

I am in high school now and I want to get the basic idea of what relativity. Can anyone suggest me a book or website for it? I am also curious about the mathematics behind it. Is it possible for me to ...
7
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3answers
508 views

How to learn celestial mechanics?

I'm a PhD student in math and am really excited about celestial mechanics. I was wondering if anyone could give me a roadmap for learning this subject. The amount of information about it on the ...
0
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1answer
53 views

Bachelor of Science: Physics. Poor math background, still doable? [duplicate]

I have a very great interest in physics. I'm in my last year of high school and unfortunately I only have 3 hours of math a week at the moment. Now, I'd like to go and do physics next year and I will ...
1
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0answers
29 views

How do I go about understanding particle physics? [closed]

My science project has tasked me in creating a research paper on the standard model of particle physics, but I'm not in highschool yet. I don't know how to go about learning the math and the concepts ...
0
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0answers
16 views

Literatur recommendations for QCD Self study [duplicate]

Im a Computer Science Student with String physisch background, nur vety wrack formal Math Education In physisch the most advanced Theorie coursr I Tool was Quantum statistics, nur I have absolutely no ...
0
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1answer
43 views

Particle nature of light [closed]

How particle nature of light can be observed in material world? To common man light does not hit them or make them fall when light beam is projected on them.
1
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0answers
39 views

Understanding the mathematical terms in Physics [closed]

I understand well only when I get a physical picture of the concept. Is it good? or should I change.
2
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1answer
61 views

Why does one use different materials for cathode and anode in the photoelectric effect experiment

All photoeletric lab experiments I have seen so far have a setup where you have different materials for cathode and anode. However this raises some experimental difficulties since you have to take ...
26
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5answers
5k views

Help! An 8 year old asked me how to build a nuclear power plant [closed]

I would really like to give an explanation similar to this one. Here's my current recipe: (i) Mine uranium, for example take a rock from here (picture of uranium mine in Kazakhstan). (ii) Put the ...
1
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0answers
39 views

Direct comparison of energy measurements for kids

I am planning a few physics & science sessions in the woods with 14 year-olds. The theme for one of the sessions is Energy, and my aim is to show them how gravity, solar radiation, wind (air ...
1
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0answers
29 views

General approach to Mechanics? [duplicate]

So, I know that this question may be tough to answer, but I am asking this question in all seriousness, and I don't consider myself a newbie... Lately, I am trying to find a way to "generalize" my ...
2
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0answers
43 views

Seeking masters degree advice [closed]

I am graduating this semester with a bachelors in physics. My goal is to do theory in my graduate level course work. The problem I am in now is that I missed the deadline to take the physics GRE (I'm ...
2
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0answers
46 views

How to teach/learn physics - reference request

I remember reading a paper (or a transcript of a talk) which describes the process of learning/teaching physics as a landing on a planet. In order to find a suitable place to land, you need to orbit ...
1
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1answer
37 views

Note and homework organization [closed]

this is my first post here so please forgive any errors! I am currently in a mechanics class and having a little trouble trying to figure out how I should structure my lecture notes and my homework. I ...
2
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0answers
27 views

Gravitational waves: simulations of signal

I am self-learning GR. I was wondering if there is any open source software to help learn more about the signal processing of gravitational waves. E.g. a software that injects a signal into random ...
2
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0answers
28 views

Are there any video lectures that teach Weinberg's QFT books? [duplicate]

I am reading Weinberg's QFT books. I wonder is there any course can help me with it.
1
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2answers
57 views

Feynman path integral course online [duplicate]

There are a lot of books dealing with Feynman path integrals. Are there any online courses introducing Feynman path integrals and their applications?
0
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0answers
9 views
2
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0answers
42 views

What are the essential pure mathematics branches applied in theoretical high energy physics [closed]

I am a physics graduate student.I am interested in theoretical high energy physics.Very often people say that to be a good theoretical physicist you need to know mathematics very well.Now although we ...
1
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0answers
70 views

Am i studying physics too inefficiently? [closed]

I am a 9th standard student and like others on this site, i am highly fascinated by maths and physics. i have planned to study physics and math this way ( probably you will laugh on me when you read ...
2
votes
0answers
23 views

Ideas for experiments on the Beamline for Schools at CERN? [closed]

I'm thinking of participating in CERN's Beamline for schools competition. To those who do not know, they offer a batch from a school to conduct their own experiment on a small scale particle ...
0
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1answer
60 views

Reference request for relativistic imaging

Being a high-school physics teacher, I always am searching for compelling and different approaches to the subject. In the case of (special) relativity a frequent curiosity arises while discussing what ...
2
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1answer
174 views

How much QFT do I need to get started on String Theory? [closed]

I want to get started learning String Theory (most likely from David Tong's lecture notes) and I would like to know which topics I need to know from QFT. In particular, if I were to follow Peskin, ...
1
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2answers
82 views

What makes Jacob's ladder spark to go upwards?

In a Jacob's ladder (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GaC4BnbH1NY&index=3&list=PL_SAbPKia2YMFi-t8z5WFYCd86Plcs1Un) a spark is originated in the bottom and climbs up to the top. I have read in ...