Learning the gcse physics equations :) Watch

SmartUnicorn
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hey!
so I've been trying to learn the physics equations for ages but the different ways of writing them keeps confusing me. Like I learn the words and then the symbols confuse me. could I just learn the symbols and what the mean, then make mnemonics. my friend told me not to do this because different words can have the same symbol.
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AB2907
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Hm... a way I think is quite interesting is using the units.

For example, the unit for speed is m/s.

/ = divide

m (distance) / s (time)

speed = m/s
speed = distance/time

Another example could be momentum

unit for momentum = kg m/s
(two symbols next to each other means multiply)

kg x m/s

kg (mass) x m/s (velocity)

momentum = kg m/s
momentum = mass x velocity

Although, you could just memorise the triangles on a formula sheet.
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Emily~3695
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(Original post by SmartUnicorn)
hey!
so I've been trying to learn the physics equations for ages but the different ways of writing them keeps confusing me. Like I learn the words and then the symbols confuse me. could I just learn the symbols and what the mean, then make mnemonics. my friend told me not to do this because different words can have the same symbol.
I would recommend learning the symbols for different words using flashcards etc. 2 different things will not have the same symbol but they may have similar symbols eg. A capital and lowercase of the same letter could be for completely different things. When you have learnt the symbols I would recommend learning the equations using flashcards or quizlet, if you find them useful you could also use formula triangles to help you rearrange the equations
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carxlinefxrbes_
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For me personally, I haven't tried to learn the formulae with mnemonics. Furthermore, I've only just started to use flashcards to learn them but only at times when my brain is most likely to remember them e.g. right before I go to sleep and then once again in the morning, I do use other methods alongside this.

Firstly before an exam, you could attempt lots of practise questions and always write down the formulas when you use them. Also, you could write them down and try to rearrange them to see which format you best remember them. (You could remember them best as formula triangles, words or by associating words with the symbols for the equation)

Last min tips (After you have done the tips above (flashcards etc..)) (DO NOT RELY ON THESE AS YOUR ONLY METHOD OF REVISION)

Right before an exam (for short term memory), you could keep writing down the formulas on a sheet of paper over and over again so when you get into the exam you can turn your paper to the back and write them all down whilst they're in your head. [This is what I try to do but do not rely on it if it's the only revision you will do!]

Whilst in an exam you may get a formula question where you are given some information such as the units for the answer. In most cases, the units are the formula! For example, the formula for density=mass/volume and the units are g/cm3 or kg/m3 (the / standing for divide if you use this technique).

Another thing in the exam, if you are really struggling to remember an equation, is that in most formulas for energy everything on the other side is multiplied. E.g. KE= 0.5 x m x v^2. And GPE= m x g x h. E=QV and E=Pt.

Finally, you will be given certain things to use in the question itself. Sometimes the question may be - State the formula linking density, mass and volume. (D=m/v) and then there will be a second question underneath asking you to work an answer out with given values. Tip: think about whether or not these values will have a positive relationship (One will increase as the other does [they will be timsed]) or whether they will have a negative relationship (One will decrease as the other does[they will be divided]). Lastly, does your answer seem reasonable? eg. would the weight of a truck on earth really be 10g? If not try another formula and check if your answer seems more accurate.

Hope this helps!
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username4966870
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Draw the triangles on your hands
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Sinnoh
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Write down the equation in its original form for every single question. Doing fifty questions on electronics? Write down V = IR for each of them (if it's needed ofc). If you write the equation down every single time, it will get stuck in your head. Even though I had a formula sheet for GCSEs I think I could have done without because I'd written down the equations so many times.
You can of course check with the units to see if your equation is dimensionally consistent.
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SmartUnicorn
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(Original post by AB2907)
Hm... a way I think is quite interesting is using the units.

For example, the unit for speed is m/s.

/ = divide

m (distance) / s (time)

speed = m/s
speed = distance/time

Another example could be momentum

unit for momentum = kg m/s
(two symbols next to each other means multiply)

kg x m/s

kg (mass) x m/s (velocity)

momentum = kg m/s
momentum = mass x velocity

Although, you could just memorise the triangles on a formula sheet.
woah that's such a smart way to do it !!
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SmartUnicorn
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(Original post by Emily~3695)
I would recommend learning the symbols for different words using flashcards etc. 2 different things will not have the same symbol but they may have similar symbols eg. A capital and lowercase of the same letter could be for completely different things. When you have learnt the symbols I would recommend learning the equations using flashcards or quizlet, if you find them useful you could also use formula triangles to help you rearrange the equations
ohh that's good then, from what my friend told me, I though that two different words would have the exact same symbol. Thankyou !
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casabonita
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i'd say try to memorise them with flashcards, then practice applying them to cement the equations in your mind
i was told that any equation for energy, you always multiple - dont quote me on this tho haha
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999QR
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(Original post by SmartUnicorn)
hey!
so I've been trying to learn the physics equations for ages but the different ways of writing them keeps confusing me. Like I learn the words and then the symbols confuse me. could I just learn the symbols and what the mean, then make mnemonics. my friend told me not to do this because different words can have the same symbol.
I printed them and pasted them on my wall
and In less than a week I know them all.

another way is to do a lot of pastpapers, when you use the equations they automatically get stored in your brain cells.

hope it helped, if it did let me know by leaving a REP.
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SmartUnicorn
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(Original post by carxlinefxrbes_)
For me personally, I haven't tried to learn the formulae with mnemonics. Furthermore, I've only just started to use flashcards to learn them but only at times when my brain is most likely to remember them e.g. right before I go to sleep and then once again in the morning, I do use other methods alongside this.

Firstly before an exam, you could attempt lots of practise questions and always write down the formulas when you use them. Also, you could write them down and try to rearrange them to see which format you best remember them. (You could remember them best as formula triangles, words or by associating words with the symbols for the equation)

Last min tips (After you have done the tips above (flashcards etc..)) (DO NOT RELY ON THESE AS YOUR ONLY METHOD OF REVISION)

Right before an exam (for short term memory), you could keep writing down the formulas on a sheet of paper over and over again so when you get into the exam you can turn your paper to the back and write them all down whilst they're in your head. [This is what I try to do but do not rely on it if it's the only revision you will do!]

Whilst in an exam you may get a formula question where you are given some information such as the units for the answer. In most cases, the units are the formula! For example, the formula for density=mass/volume and the units are g/cm3 or kg/m3 (the / standing for divide if you use this technique).

Another thing in the exam, if you are really struggling to remember an equation, is that in most formulas for energy everything on the other side is multiplied. E.g. KE= 0.5 x m x v^2. And GPE= m x g x h. E=QV and E=Pt.

Finally, you will be given certain things to use in the question itself. Sometimes the question may be - State the formula linking density, mass and volume. (D=m/v) and then there will be a second question underneath asking you to work an answer out with given values. Tip: think about whether or not these values will have a positive relationship (One will increase as the other does [they will be timsed]) or whether they will have a negative relationship (One will decrease as the other does[they will be divided]). Lastly, does your answer seem reasonable? eg. would the weight of a truck on earth really be 10g? If not try another formula and check if your answer seems more accurate.

Hope this helps!
okay, Thankyou so much it was very helpful, especially the thing about the energy ! thanks
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SmartUnicorn
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Write down the equation in its original form for every single question. Doing fifty questions on electronics? Write down V = IR for each of them (if it's needed ofc). If you write the equation down every single time, it will get stuck in your head. Even though I had a formula sheet for GCSEs I think I could have done without because I'd written down the equations so many times.
You can of course check with the units to see if your equation is dimensionally consistent.
okay I'll take your advice, thanks !
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leftblankm
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i dont see why you need to know symbols and triangles, i just learn the words like distance = speed x time and then i can just rearrange the equation in my head. knowing symbols would just confuse me like when you get new letters and when the letter has nothing to do with the actual word
but i use flashcards and stick the equations on my walls
Last edited by leftblankm; 1 month ago
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SmartUnicorn
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(Original post by casabonita)
i'd say try to memorise them with flashcards, then practice applying them to cement the equations in your mind
i was told that any equation for energy, you always multiple - dont quote me on this tho haha
yes I heard that too ! thanks for the great advice !
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thekidwhogames
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(Original post by AB2907)
Hm... a way I think is quite interesting is using the units.

For example, the unit for speed is m/s.

/ = divide

m (distance) / s (time)

speed = m/s
speed = distance/time

Another example could be momentum

unit for momentum = kg m/s
(two symbols next to each other means multiply)

kg x m/s

kg (mass) x m/s (velocity)

momentum = kg m/s
momentum = mass x velocity

Although, you could just memorise the triangles on a formula sheet.
This is actually quite smart (and a great skill to have!) and how I remember them too but for some formulas, it doesn't quite work - because of proportionality constants!

For example, the SUVAT kinematics formulae, kinetic energy, Newton's Law of Gravitation, Columb's Law,etc.

I can't actually remember GCSE well (only 2 years ago but I feel it was a lifetime ago) but I don't think most formulae have constants anyways?
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redmeercat
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I just listened to the 21 physics equation song over and over again for 5 months before my exam... really annoying, but 2 years later I can still remember all the equations so it must have worked! As long as you practice using them as well, of course.
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