I dont know how to improve in Physics

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PetitePanda
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I'm currently doing really bad in Physics with an E in my mocks and getting the lowest in the class on paper 2 and overall. I dont know how I can improve on Waves, Optics and Electricity because I don't understand it completely and when I think I do, I am wrong in questions. I'm really overwhelmed and Idk what I should do - I feel like anything I do will be useless
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johnjohnson2000
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
I'm currently doing really bad in Physics with an E in my mocks and getting the lowest in the class on paper 2 and overall. I dont know how I can improve on Waves, Optics and Electricity because I don't understand it completely and when I think I do, I am wrong in questions. I'm really overwhelmed and Idk what I should do - I feel like anything I do will be useless
Hi how are you currently revising for these topics?
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5hyl33n
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
I'm currently doing really bad in Physics with an E in my mocks and getting the lowest in the class on paper 2 and overall. I dont know how I can improve on Waves, Optics and Electricity because I don't understand it completely and when I think I do, I am wrong in questions. I'm really overwhelmed and Idk what I should do - I feel like anything I do will be useless
Same here! My whole class is sitting on E’s and U’s. My teacher isn’t that good either. I wonder why no one has questioned my teacher about our test grades.
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by johnjohnson2000)
Hi how are you currently revising for these topics?
I tried to go over the notes in my class but they were like wow i totally didnt understand in that lesson so I went to the examboard book, which was helpful but not much since it didnt get in my head so I went to the CGP revision guide, which helped me but it's not enough info i needed. I tried to do exam style questions, normally I get to see what I did wrong but I dont even know how to start for some of them or how it related to that question. I feel like I'm in a mess trying to do stuff that might be ineffective and idk how to feel motivated for that side anymore
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by 5hyl33n)
Same here! My whole class is sitting on E’s and U’s. My teacher isn’t that good either. I wonder why no one has questioned my teacher about our test grades.
Oh god what has your teacher have been doing? Do you have only one teacher? My class is so different everyone's getting like As or Bs with a few Cs/Ds and I'm the only one with an E (does wonder for my self-esteem really)
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5hyl33n
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
Oh god what has your teacher have been doing? Do you have only one teacher? My class is so different everyone's getting like As or Bs with a few Cs/Ds and I'm the only one with an E (does wonder for my self-esteem really)
I have two teachers but everyone’s failing in both. Perhaps, we should study together as we are at the same grade! 😂
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by 5hyl33n)
I have two teachers but everyone’s failing in both. Perhaps, we should study together as we are at the same grade! 😂
I dont think I'll be of any help 😂
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johnjohnson2000
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
I tried to go over the notes in my class but they were like wow i totally didnt understand in that lesson so I went to the examboard book, which was helpful but not much since it didnt get in my head so I went to the CGP revision guide, which helped me but it's not enough info i needed. I tried to do exam style questions, normally I get to see what I did wrong but I dont even know how to start for some of them or how it related to that question. I feel like I'm in a mess trying to do stuff that might be ineffective and idk how to feel motivated for that side anymore
Yeah I understand you, I’m a resitting student so I’ve kind of had to go through a lot of different methods of teaching myself physics because it definitely was the one I struggled with most. I think the first time around I was a lot more stuck in the mindset of learning it until I knew it like the back of my hand and then expecting to be able to apply my knowledge of that in any exam style question, however, as you’ve probably discovered that doesn’t really always translate over. What I done this time around was trying to find different sources for questions, so that included Isaac physics, the CGP purple work book, the CGP book, making sure to do all the application, fact recall and exam style questions. And then what I would then do is go to PMT and do their questions for the topic you are doing and learning from the mark scheme if you don’t understand that question because you do pick up so much more doing the actual questions. I think most importantly though, after doing all this I made my own notes, because it is easy to rewrite the CGP book, but you find yourself doing this every time you revisit this topic, and add into your notes little pointers you’ve picked up from doing certain questions so you don’t get stuck on them in the future. If you have access to exampro instead of PMT I would advise to use that instead because PMT tend to be old spec questions, however the same skills do carry over to the current Spec.
Hope this helps
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by johnjohnson2000)
Yeah I understand you, I’m a resitting student so I’ve kind of had to go through a lot of different methods of teaching myself physics because it definitely was the one I struggled with most. I think the first time around I was a lot more stuck in the mindset of learning it until I knew it like the back of my hand and then expecting to be able to apply my knowledge of that in any exam style question, however, as you’ve probably discovered that doesn’t really always translate over. What I done this time around was trying to find different sources for questions, so that included Isaac physics, the CGP purple work book, the CGP book, making sure to do all the application, fact recall and exam style questions. And then what I would then do is go to PMT and do their questions for the topic you are doing and learning from the mark scheme if you don’t understand that question because you do pick up so much more doing the actual questions. I think most importantly though, after doing all this I made my own notes, because it is easy to rewrite the CGP book, but you find yourself doing this every time you revisit this topic, and add into your notes little pointers you’ve picked up from doing certain questions so you don’t get stuck on them in the future. If you have access to exampro instead of PMT I would advise to use that instead because PMT tend to be old spec questions, however the same skills do carry over to the current Spec.
Hope this helps
Wait I'm really confused what you did in order I'm so sorry. I agree with your reasoning and thank you so much for your suggestions because that did make it easier for me to see what I've been doing wrong and I genuinely think I will find this effective. I will defo ask my teacher if they could give me access on exampro tho. However, could you give me what to do in simpler order?
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johnjohnson2000
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
Wait I'm really confused what you did in order I'm so sorry. I agree with your reasoning and thank you so much for your suggestions because that did make it easier for me to see what I've been doing wrong and I genuinely think I will find this effective. I will defo ask my teacher if they could give me access on exampro tho. However, could you give me what to do in simpler order?
Yes sorry I didn’t proof read, it doesn’t read the easiest.
So firstly, as you have done already make notes but try and divert from the same wording as they have used because I feel like I’m more likely to remember it once it’s in my own terms. Then do all the questions within the book related to your topic. Then there’s a CGP workbook which I use as the bridge between the text book and the actual exam questions. I think using that workbook, you do pick up on a few skills to use that will help you later on in attempting exam questions.
Then once practicing and doing questions, just try and attempt to get it from a range of sources for example Isaac Physics, the workbook, Physics and Maths Tutor, just so when you come to the questions on Exampro, you have experienced working through almost every style of question. However even at this testing stage on exampro, I still feel you have so much to learn. On exampro, you can choose the sources to the question you are doing, what I like to do is leave one of the years out, for example you may choose to do questions from all years papers apart from 2018 to build your skills. I like to make notes from mark schemes and trying to work your way through the question by looking only at the first marking point, in order to kickstart your thought processes to answer the question, but always try and not move on from a question without understanding how to do it and where the answer came from. So once you’ve gained a lot more experience and knowledge from doing all this practice, you can then use this unused year to test yourself and then you can gain the confidence that you could have got the electricity questions in this real paper if you sat it. And I think that’s a satisfying point to be at before you move on to the next topic.
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by johnjohnson2000)
Yes sorry I didn’t proof read, it doesn’t read the easiest.
So firstly, as you have done already make notes but try and divert from the same wording as they have used because I feel like I’m more likely to remember it once it’s in my own terms. Then do all the questions within the book related to your topic. Then there’s a CGP workbook which I use as the bridge between the text book and the actual exam questions. I think using that workbook, you do pick up on a few skills to use that will help you later on in attempting exam questions.
Then once practicing and doing questions, just try and attempt to get it from a range of sources for example Isaac Physics, the workbook, Physics and Maths Tutor, just so when you come to the questions on Exampro, you have experienced working through almost every style of question. However even at this testing stage on exampro, I still feel you have so much to learn. On exampro, you can choose the sources to the question you are doing, what I like to do is leave one of the years out, for example you may choose to do questions from all years papers apart from 2018 to build your skills. I like to make notes from mark schemes and trying to work your way through the question by looking only at the first marking point, in order to kickstart your thought processes to answer the question, but always try and not move on from a question without understanding how to do it and where the answer came from. So once you’ve gained a lot more experience and knowledge from doing all this practice, you can then use this unused year to test yourself and then you can gain the confidence that you could have got the electricity questions in this real paper if you sat it. And I think that’s a satisfying point to be at before you move on to the next topic.
Thank you so much. I think I might write notes and start from there and fresh. I'll buy the CGP workbook because I only have the revision book - do you recommend me buying it. Thank you for your suggestion about Isaac Physics because I looked at this and I was like how did I not know this? Btw can I know your experience with Isaac Physics and what you did with it? The first mark point is so clever - I'll start to do that from now on thank youuuu This has really gave me an insight PRSOM
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1st superstar
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Same and also Sinnoh
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Arctic Kitten
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Hi, I'm doing Physics at uni, tutored a lot of people, and I can tell you it might not be entirely your faults. The quality of Physics teachers varies greatly.
I would recommend first to look at the exam board marking scheme. It's a bit backward but you should try to identify questions that occasionally come up, and the answers they are expecting. See what is in common, they have a very specific format. Then compare it with your current answers, and see where can you improve.
Read notes (PMT for example) and identify key concepts. See what you do not understand, look at Wikipedia, or ask your teacher.
then practice more past paper, look at the scheme and repeat. Try to learn the mark scheme word by word if possible (you will if you copied them down a lot of time)
Hope this help!
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by 1st superstar)
Same and also Sinnoh
I always will find you
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by Arctic Kitten)
Hi, I'm doing Physics at uni, tutored a lot of people, and I can tell you it might not be entirely your faults. The quality of Physics teachers varies greatly.
I would recommend first to look at the exam board marking scheme. It's a bit backward but you should try to identify questions that occasionally come up, and the answers they are expecting. See what is in common, they have a very specific format. Then compare it with your current answers, and see where can you improve.
Read notes (PMT for example) and identify key concepts. See what you do not understand, look at Wikipedia, or ask your teacher.
then practice more past paper, look at the scheme and repeat. Try to learn the mark scheme word by word if possible (you will if you copied them down a lot of time)
Hope this help!
I can understand "the quality of physics teachers varies greatly" so much. My physics teacher 2 (not the struggling side) actually helps me with what the examboard's expectation like how I will miss marks, which does sometimes goes on the other side but I dont know most of it tbh so that's a pretty good shout mate, especially about it having a specific format. Wdym key concepts? Could you give an example? I'm starting to do that with quizlet now instead of writing lots of flashcards and making it super fancy. It defo did help Thank you so much. PRSOM
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Arctic Kitten
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
I can understand "the quality of physics teachers varies greatly" so much. My physics teacher 2 (not the struggling side) actually helps me with what the examboard's expectation like how I will miss marks, which does sometimes goes on the other side but I dont know most of it tbh so that's a pretty good shout mate, especially about it having a specific format. Wdym key concepts? Could you give an example? I'm starting to do that with quizlet now instead of writing lots of flashcards and making it super fancy. It defo did help Thank you so much. PRSOM
Let's pick wave-particle duality says.
Key concepts are wave theory, photoelectric effect, their incompatibility and energy levels.
Wave theory you have young slits.
- What does it look like? Vertical fringes. draw a diagram
- Why does it look like that? Constructive interference -> Bright fringes, Destructive -> Dark
- How does that happen? monochromatic waves through slit diffract, and diffracted wave overlaps. Principle of superposition determines the brightness.
- Then you might want to go back and ask, what is superposition? why overlapping wave cause interference? does it work only for monochromatic waves?
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by Arctic Kitten)
Let's pick wave-particle duality says.
Key concepts are wave theory, photoelectric effect, their incompatibility and energy levels.
Wave theory you have young slits.
- What does it look like? Vertical fringes. draw a diagram
- Why does it look like that? Constructive interference -> Bright fringes, Destructive -> Dark
- How does that happen? monochromatic waves through slit diffract, and diffracted wave overlaps. Principle of superposition determines the brightness.
- Then you might want to go back and ask, what is superposition? why overlapping wave cause interference? does it work only for monochromatic waves?
Ohhh I understand how to find the key concepts now PRSOM. Ohhh I see your process of thinking. Would be good if I went through a topic or key concept with what happens in this, why does this happen and how does this happen like you did for this example?
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Arctic Kitten
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
Ohhh I understand how to find the key concepts now PRSOM. Ohhh I see your process of thinking. Would be good if I went through a topic or key concept with what happens in this, why does this happen and how does this happen like you did for this example?
Mostly when you read your class notes/ online notes, think this way. Identify what part is important, and take notes of them as a form of question-answer. Especially reading mark scheme. For 4 mark, they might ask, describe and explain young slits. So where is the 4 marks? it's for describing, for constructive/destructive, for writing diffraction of monochromatic waves, and for superposition. once you get used to it, it comes naturally.
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by Arctic Kitten)
Mostly when you read your class notes/ online notes, think this way. Identify what part is important, and take notes of them as a form of question-answer. Especially reading mark scheme. For 4 mark, they might ask, describe and explain young slits. So where is the 4 marks? it's for describing, for constructive/destructive, for writing diffraction of monochromatic waves, and for superposition. once you get used to it, it comes naturally.
That's actually a good shout ngl. I will try that after I read the examboard marking shceme
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One thing I had noticed with physics is that often just understanding wasn't enough, it was often down to how carefully you actually answered the question and adhered to the style of the mark scheme. That probably bumped me up a grade or two. If you took the 'biology approach', i.e. rote-learning of mark schemes and information without understanding a thing then you could maybe do better but it would just be horribly boring and I don't recommend it.

When I made notes it was to try to explain it to my future self. There's no point writing something down that you don't understand - come up with analogies, diagrams, reasons why. I think that's the first step to getting to understand the topic, once you've got that then you can try using your notes and flashcards to help you answer exam questions.
With electricity especially there are a few things you need to always remember as true, like parallel PDs being equal, Kirchhoff's laws, understanding how PD is divided. On their own they're simple enough concepts but it's easy to forget or miss something out.

When I was marking my work I'd try to train myself to answer in the 'mark scheme style' - that is, if I missed out on marks I'd make a note of what the relevant info/key words were and also identify the irrelevant bits.
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