# Differentiation and Integration at post-A2?

Watch
Announcements
#1
(Since I'm asking in the context of a Physics major but about Math I'm not sure if this is the right place - feel free to move if need be!)

So I'm just curious, how much is Differentiation/Integration needed post-A2 for a degree and for what? I can't help noticing it shows up in C1, C2, Diff in C3, and C4.

It's not that I'm bad at it, quite the opposite - just that I'm not sure exactly how much more important it is than the other topics, at least for Astrophysics. Shows up more than anything.

Kinda asking here because I did my A2 Physics last year without more than a C at GCSE and did fine, but I get the feeling this is different at MPhys level (hence studying C1-4/M1/M2).
0
2 years ago
#2
I think maths in a physics degree will involve a lot more calculus and geometry than alevel. the maths in alevel physics isn't bad, it's essentially rearranging any equation, proportionality, some derivation and logs.

fairly certain that M3 involves calculus.
1
2 years ago
#3
(Original post by CastCuraga)
Kinda asking here because I did my A2 Physics last year without more than a C at GCSE and did fine, but I get the feeling this is different at MPhys level (hence studying C1-4/M1/M2).
As you've noticed, there is very little new maths in A level physics (just the logarithms and exponentials). But for any branch of physics at a higher level, calculus is essential. Physics is largely about how things change over time, and to tell how a thing (let's call it S) changes over time, you need to work out dS/dt, where t is time. And to work out the total effect of lots of small effects, you need to integrate. So yeah, it's pretty much everywhere in higher level physics.
1
#4
(Original post by BTAnonymous)
I think maths in a physics degree will involve a lot more calculus and geometry than alevel. the maths in alevel physics isn't bad, it's essentially rearranging any equation, proportionality, some derivation and logs.

fairly certain that M3 involves calculus.
Aye, the Maths in A2 Physics was fine. Having to take the Maths A Level now for uni entrance, just struggling to see how most of what I'm learning here is applied. Probably a common complaint.
But aye, will make sure to focus on those two then. Thank ye!

(Original post by Pangol)
As you've noticed, there is very little new maths in A level physics (just the logarithms and exponentials). But for any branch of physics at a higher level, calculus is essential. Physics is largely about how things change over time, and to tell how a thing (let's call it S) changes over time, you need to work out dS/dt, where t is time. And to work out the total effect of lots of small effects, you need to integrate. So yeah, it's pretty much everywhere in higher level physics.
That makes more sense, thank ye! Was struggling to understand how they'd be used, but I think I get it. Did you do Physics by chance? Am curious whether FP1 or M3-5 is worth looking at over the summer for 1st year.
1
2 years ago
#5
(Original post by Pangol)
As you've noticed, there is very little new maths in A level physics (just the logarithms and exponentials). But for any branch of physics at a higher level, calculus is essential. Physics is largely about how things change over time, and to tell how a thing (let's call it S) changes over time, you need to work out dS/dt, where t is time. And to work out the total effect of lots of small effects, you need to integrate. So yeah, it's pretty much everywhere in higher level physics.
yes. and these concepts align with a lot of engineering disciplines as well, especially with aerospace dealing with fluid dynamics where everything is always changing!
0
2 years ago
#6
(Original post by CastCuraga)
That makes more sense, thank ye! Was struggling to understand how they'd be used, but I think I get it. Did you do Physics by chance? Am curious whether FP1 or M3-5 is worth looking at over the summer for 1st year.
I would certainly say that M3-M5 will help you to see why A level maths (not just calculus) is useful, but this will only be in the context of mechanics (of course!). It also occurs throughout physics and engineering - for example, the fundamental laws of electromagnetism are a collection of differential equations. But that's a bit too much at this level, so the mechanics context would be a great place to start.
0
2 years ago
#7
(Original post by CastCuraga)
That makes more sense, thank ye! Was struggling to understand how they'd be used, but I think I get it. Did you do Physics by chance? Am curious whether FP1 or M3-5 is worth looking at over the summer for 1st year.
Go to a youtube channel called ‘3blue1brown’ watch his series on the essence of calculus its some interesting stuff the gave me more of an appreciation of what i was doing when applying all these rules and formulas that i had learnt, his series on linear algebra is good too but u have to have some experience with matricies to get what hes talking about.
0
2 years ago
#8
1st year at the moment (Astro, actually doing it in the first year through direct entry)

Good amount of calculus and differentiation. First thing we did was literally use calculus for Planck's Law, i.e. for blackbody relationships and intensity/wavelength relationships for a blackbody source. In the actual Physics course, we used calculus for everything from friction on a pulley down to the energy density relationship of a string... you can do this without it, but teacher had fun with us.

Either way, it's very useful.
0
X

new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

### Oops, nobody has postedin the last few hours.

Why not re-start the conversation?

see more

### See more of what you like onThe Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

### Poll

Join the discussion

#### Do you have the space and resources you need to succeed in home learning?

Yes I have everything I need (445)
56.47%
I don't have everything I need (343)
43.53%