Why do people find physics harder than maths?

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#1
I don't get why everyone finds physics so hard? It's certainly not easy but it is extremely straightforward. Say there's a question about finding the speed of a rollercoaster at the bottom of a hill. All you need to know is everything gets it's speed from energy and that things moving away from the earth gain gravitational potential energy (E=mgh). So if it is moving back down all that energy must have been turned to kinetic energy (E=1/2 mv^2) assuming no friction so the speed of the thing is v= (2gh)^1/2 . Simples.

I never get how people find maths easier than physics. I find maths way harder because it's more abstract

In GCSE Maths I was in foundation set for most of it getting Cs and even Es then worked my ass of at the end to get into higher set and just scrape 80%

In GCSE Physics I knew what it was to feel like a god no other way to explain it. Did a bit of quiet reading a couple weeks before the exam, walked in all chilled out knowing I had a guaranteed 90% minimum. The whole thing was nothing more than a fun competition between me and the class "smart Asian girl" to see who could get closest to 100%. I usually won. In maths class however I was seen as the class dummy where the snobbish class protested me joining from "the lower ranks". "smart Asian girl" was indestructible getting 100% on EVERY single exam in maths.

In A level physics I actually ahd to work (obviously) But I still found it pretty straightforward In Maths my performance shot through the roof after they gave me a calculator as you can see in the jump fom C1 to C2. But I still found it tricky.

In A level maths I got

C1 - 73%

C2 - 91%

C3 - 86%

C4 - 84%

In A level physics I got

Unit 1 - 88%

Unit 2 - 90 %

Unit 3 - 100%

Unit 4 - 98%

So someone please give your side of the story as to why you find physics harder than maths.
13
8 years ago
#2
Physics is applied maths, some people don't like/aren't good at applied maths compared to core/pure maths which on general consensus is seen as easier to the majority of students
1
8 years ago
#3
It can be difficult to translate a physical, real-life situation into a more abstract, mathematical model. Lol at you posting a breakdown of your A level marks though, who are you hoping to impress?
10
8 years ago
#4
Maths questions don't require as much context, so in turn are easier to prepare for as you know what you're going to get. Less opportunities to slip up.
1
8 years ago
#5
There are a lot of things not explicitly mentioned in physics that people know through intuition, this is invisible to the people who lack the intuition.
2
8 years ago
#6
(Original post by peter12345)
I don't get why everyone finds physics so hard? It's certainly not easy but it is extremely straightforward. Say there's a question about finding the speed of a rollercoaster at the bottom of a hill. All you need to know is everything gets it's speed from energy and that things moving away from the earth gain gravitational potential energy (E=mgh). So if it is moving back down all that energy must have been turned to kinetic energy (E=1/2 mv^2) assuming no friction so the speed of the thing is v= (2gh)^1/2 . Simples.

I never get how people find maths easier than physics. I find maths way harder because it's more abstract

In GCSE Maths I was in foundation set for most of it getting Cs and even Es then worked my ass of at the end to get into higher set and just scrape 80%

In GCSE Physics I knew what it was to feel like a god no other way to explain it. Did a bit of quiet reading a couple weeks before the exam, walked in all chilled out knowing I had a guaranteed 90% minimum. The whole thing was nothing more than a fun competition between me and the class "smart Asian girl" to see who could get closest to 100%. I usually won. In maths class however I was seen as the class dummy where the snobbish class protested me joining from "the lower ranks". "smart Asian girl" was indestructible getting 100% on EVERY single exam in maths.

In A level physics I actually ahd to work (obviously) But I still found it pretty straightforward In Maths my performance shot through the roof after they gave me a calculator as you can see in the jump fom C1 to C2. But I still found it tricky.

In A level maths I got

C1 - 73%

C2 - 91%

C3 - 86%

C4 - 84%

In A level physics I got

Unit 1 - 88%

Unit 2 - 90 %

Unit 3 - 100%

Unit 4 - 98%

So someone please give your side of the story as to why you find physics harder than maths.

Some people find it harder than maths because there's more things to think about when solving a physics question compared to a maths question, IMO.

Don't worry about it anyway, you seem perfectly confident in yourself in both subjects.
0
8 years ago
#7
I thought physics was easier than maths - some people find it difficult to interpret physics exam questions. Perhaps if you're stronger at visual/spatial tasks (which males are usually considered better at than females) you can spend more time on working out the answers.
0
8 years ago
#8
(Original post by Basil Brush)
It can be difficult to translate a physical, real-life situation into a more abstract, mathematical model. Lol at you posting a breakdown of your A level marks though, who are you hoping to impress?
asian girls obv.
4
8 years ago
#9
Spatial ability. For me, both maths and physics are of equal difficulty; I'm visual/spatial person. Some of my friends who aren't that strong at spatial tasks seem to find physics harder than maths (especially compared to algebra, etc)

This is purely from my own experience.
1
8 years ago
#10
(Original post by Joinedup)
asian girls obv.
I'm an Asian girl and I can say I'm unimpressed by the lack of 100%s
1
8 years ago
#11
Because in edexcel's stupid exams, they ask some of the most stupid and random questions ever.
1
8 years ago
#12
(Original post by Albino)
Physics is applied maths, some people don't like/aren't good at applied maths compared to core/pure maths which on general consensus is seen as easier to the majority of students
Only at A- Levels or GCSEs maybe.
0
8 years ago
#13
Physics is a LOT more harder than Maths. With Maths you do the same thing again and again and again and in the exam you do the same thing again. With Physics there's always new stuff and sometimes, when there are theory questions rather than calculation questions, you feel you can't prepare for them. You have to layout your answer just like the mark scheme, it so annoying IMO. Resources for Maths are better IMO e.g. no ExamSolutions for Physics is unfair: (
0
#14
(Original post by Basil Brush)
It can be difficult to translate a physical, real-life situation into a more abstract, mathematical model. Lol at you posting a breakdown of your A level marks though, who are you hoping to impress?
No one. This is TSR everyone gets those grades and better. My grades are totally relevant to the question.I think it sad that one cannot put their grades up without others getting insecure and negging them.
1
8 years ago
#15
(Original post by peter12345)
No one. This is TSR everyone gets those grades and better. My grades are totally relevant to the question.I think it sad that one cannot put their grades up without others getting insecure and negging them.
I didn't get anywhere near those grades. I don't care in the slightest.

However, you'll be aware that your grades are totally extraneous to how hard people find physics/maths, therefore, as I'm sure you're aware, it seems as though you're posting them purely to antagonize.

I found physics harder than maths, I don't know why, but I did. I also found maths hard (exams anyway). (Highers).

On a side note, you're 21, why do you remember your percentage breakdowns?
1
#16
(Original post by pjm600)
I didn't get anywhere near those grades. I don't care in the slightest.

However, you'll be aware that your grades are totally extraneous to how hard people find physics/maths, therefore, as I'm sure you're aware, it seems as though you're posting them purely to antagonize.

I found physics harder than maths, I don't know why, but I did. I also found maths hard (exams anyway). (Highers).

On a side note, you're 21, why do you remember your percentage breakdowns?
I swear I really didn't put them up to gloat but I do admit to hanging on to my school achievements a little too much probably because I've been a failure since. However I'm just starting to grow up and move on by realizing one isn't a success because of his qualifications but what he does with them.
0
8 years ago
#17
(Original post by peter12345)
one isn't a success because of his qualifications but what he does with them.
Well said.
1
8 years ago
#18
Might be wrong but I'm guessing your not doing Edexcel Physics
0
8 years ago
#19
I'm good at both, but the only thing I find difficult about Physics (atm) is particle physics.
0
7 years ago
#20
I find both maths and further maths ridiculously easy and unit 1 physics also very easy. However I really struggle with waves and circuits. With waves, I find the books are really bad at explaining everything, as though the person writing them isn't quite sure how it all works either.
Most people seem to think physics is just all rearranging equations etc. But there always seems to be a fair proportion of questions based around the theory which are often very difficult to understand.
This is coming from someone who has got full marks or very close to full marks in all my maths and further maths mocks, got a high A in unit 1 physics mock, but struggle to pull off any better than a D in the waves and circuits bit.
1
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