Imperial Strikes Back: 2nd Year Physics GYG

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Sinnoh
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About me
Hi I'm Sinnoh. A lot of people have made GYGs in quite a short time so let's not be too late to the party. I'm about to go into my second of hopefully four years of doing physics at Imperial College. Outside of physics I'm pretty fond of classical music, history, guitar, and Pokémon. I was somewhat active in the history society and quiz society last year so I'll be rejoining them for sure.

I previously did blogs for year 13 (here) and first year (here). I don't know what to expect from this year so I can hardly say what you can expect from this blog. Last year's was more aimed at prospective physics students, this year maybe I'll actually need the motivation. So I won't go into as much detail about the stuff I'm learning - or I'll put in a different section about it in my updates if people really care.

The academic stuff
For once I am actually intending to grow my grades. Most of the main assessments last year were done after the coronavirus hit, so they were done at home. I didn't revise well at all, and had they not been open-book I'd have been really screwed.
Results from first year
Practical Physics (16.67%) - 64.90%

Mechanics and Relativity (25%) - 57.57%

Oscillations and Waves (25%) - 59.82%

Vector Fields, Electricity and Magnetism (12.5%) - 41.12%

Mathematical Analysis (8.33%) - 62.88%

Statistics of Measurement and Summer Project (12.5%) - 65.46%

Overall: 58.73%
(percentages in brackets reflect the weighting assigned to the module)

Actually not as bad as I was expecting! Still, I wouldn't want that to be my final grade, and as you can see I was very close to resitting one of the modules. Normally first year would've counted for 7.5% of my final grade, but there is a no-detriment policy in place: if my result for first year is lower than my average for the next three years, it won't count.

So at the very least, I want to get a better overall grade. I need to score at least 60% overall this year to progress on to the MSci course. Second year is normally worth 20% of the whole degree so I have much less room for messing up, too.
2nd Year Modules
Advanced Practical Physics (18.2%)

Thermal Physics and Structure of Matter (18.2%)

Differential Equations and Electromagnetism (18.2%)

Quantum Physics (27.3%)

Sun, Stars and Planets* (9.1%)

Environmental Physics* (9.1%)

I-Explore - Revolutions and the Making of the Modern World** (doesn't contribute to degree mark)

*SSP and Environmental are options, I might want to replace Environmental Physics with Mathematical Methods in case I want to transfer to the theoretical course.

**I-Explore is a slot for extracurricular modules which we're free to choose

I have heard many times that the 2nd year of physics at Imperial is completely bonkers, what with more exams and more frequent lab write-ups and an all-round infamous reputation. With the new course structure it might not be so bad, but I really don't expect to have those great swathes of free time I had last year.

Other goals for the year/things I want to do:
  • Not make a mess of things in my role on a society
  • Try out for University Challenge again (3 attempts left)
  • Suck less at Python
  • Develop some sort of daily routine for studying at home
  • Make use of office hours (even if done via Microsoft Teams!)
  • Problem sheets!!



If you want to follow this blog, either put it on watched or request to be tagged. I'll spam all of last year's tagged peoples with yet another notification, but there's no need to feel obliged or anything.

Index of updates

last year's
(idk if it re-notifies people every time I edit but I'd rather not find out)
Last edited by Sinnoh; 1 month ago
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Blue_Cow
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Image

About me
Hi I'm Sinnoh. A lot of people have made GYGs in quite a short time so let's not be too late to the party. I'm about to go into my second of hopefully four years of doing physics at Imperial College. Outside of physics I'm pretty fond of classical music, history, guitar, and Pokémon. I was somewhat active in the history society and quiz society last year so I'll be rejoining them for sure.

I previously did blogs for year 13 (here) and first year (here). I don't know what to expect from this year so I can hardly say what you can expect from this blog. Last year's was more aimed at prospective physics students, this year maybe I'll actually need the motivation. So I won't go into as much detail about the stuff I'm learning - or I'll put in a different section about it in my updates if people really care.

The academic stuff
For once I am actually intending to grow my grades. Most of the main assessments last year were done after the coronavirus hit, so they were done at home. I didn't revise well at all, and had they not been open-book I'd have been really screwed.
Results from first year
Practical Physics (16.67%) - 64.90%

Mechanics and Relativity (25%) - 57.57%

Oscillations and Waves (25%) - 59.82%

Vector Fields, Electricity and Magnetism (12.5%) - 41.12%

Mathematical Analysis (8.33%) - 62.88%

Statistics of Measurement and Summer Project (12.5%) - 65.46%

Overall: 58.73%
(percentages in brackets reflect the weighting assigned to the module)

Actually not as bad as I was expecting! Still, I wouldn't want that to be my final grade, and as you can see I was very close to resitting one of the modules. Normally first year would've counted for 7.5% of my final grade, but there is a no-detriment policy in place: if my result for first year is lower than my average for the next three years, it won't count.

So at the very least, I want to get a better overall grade. I need to score at least 60% overall this year to progress on to the MSci course. Second year is normally worth 20% of the whole degree so I have much less room for messing up, too.
2nd Year Modules
Advanced Practical Physics (16.67%)

Thermal Physics and Structure of Matter (16.67%)

Differential Equations and Electromagnetism (16.67%)

Quantum Physics (25%)

Sun, Stars and Planets* (8.33%)

Environmental Physics* (8.33%)

I-Explore - Revolutions and the Making of the Modern World** (8.33%)

*SSP and Environmental are options, I might want to replace Environmental Physics with Mathematical Methods in case I want to transfer to the theoretical course.

**I-Explore is a slot for extracurricular modules which we're free to choose

I have heard many times that the 2nd year of physics at Imperial is completely bonkers, what with more exams and more frequent lab write-ups and an all-round infamous reputation. With the new course structure it might not be so bad, but I really don't expect to have those great swathes of free time I had last year.

Other goals for the year/things I want to do:
  • Not make a mess of things in my role on a society
  • Try out for University Challenge again (3 attempts left)
  • Suck less at Python
  • Develop some sort of daily routine for studying at home
  • Problem sheets!!



If you want to follow this blog, either put it on watched or request to be tagged. I'll spam all of last year's tagged peoples with yet another notification, but there's no need to feel obliged or anything.

Sounds like a TzTok-Jad year to me good luck matey

edit: Add me to your taglist of course :hat2:
Last edited by Blue_Cow; 10 months ago
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Toastiekid
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whoa, you’re a second year now:gasp:
i hope this year is great, can i be tagged please?
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Sinnoh
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(Original post by Blue_Cow)
Sounds like a TzTok-Jad year to me good luck matey

edit: Add me to your taglist of course :hat2:
Starts easy, lulling you into a false sense of security and ultimately requiring multiple attempts? Hope not :lol:

(Original post by Zoqua)
Wow, this looks great and I would certainly be interested in reading !

Could I please be tagged? Thanks.
Yop will do

(Original post by Toastiekid)
whoa, you’re a second year now:gasp:
i hope this year is great, can i be tagged please?
God I know I feel old
and I hope so too, at least there's some chance of a vaccine coming out next year so this could be the year in which more normality returns
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barror1
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Best of luck this year! :hugs:
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laurawatt
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Yasss :woo: tag me please!
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Getoutamaswamp
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This blog looks so interesting definitely tag me
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aconstanthamlet
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Physics?
At Imperial!?
Respect!!

I used to love physics at GCSE but that was my limit haha! This looks so interesting, I would love to be tagged please! :dance:
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Sinnoh
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(Original post by barror1)
Best of luck this year! :hugs:
Thanks! and you too. How's teaching working at York?

(Original post by laurawatt)
Yasss :woo: tag me please!
Will do

(Original post by Getoutamaswamp)
This blog looks so interesting definitely tag me
Glad I've given that impression, will add you to the list

(Original post by aconstanthamlet)
Physics?
At Imperial!?
Respect!!

I used to love physics at GCSE but that was my limit haha! This looks so interesting, I would love to be tagged please! :dance:
Thanks! I'll be honest I never liked the physics GCSE or A-level that much, I was relying on it being different once I did it at uni. Will add you!
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Toastiekid
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
God I know I feel old
and I hope so too, at least there's some chance of a vaccine coming out next year so this could be the year in which more normality returns
:laugh: i remember when you were in year 13:eek:
fingers crossed!
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absolutelysprout
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the i-explore module looks really interesting! keep me tagged
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Sinnoh
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(Original post by Hellohsjakodsmka)
Tag me in too please
And good luck!!
Will do, and thanks!

(Original post by absolutelysprout)
the i-explore module looks really interesting! keep me tagged
Is it sad that the module I'm looking forward to the most this year in my physics degree is about history? :lol:
bien sur you will be tagged
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barror1
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Thanks! and you too. How's teaching working at York?
From what I can tell there is going to be face-to-face seminars where possible but larger lectures will be held online! It must be much weirder being in London though :eek3:
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philogrobized
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This GYG looks great. When I was reading your introduction I was wondering whether you would try out for university challenge, and then you mentioned it lmao. Good luck. Can you tag me please? Thanks
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bored_user:)
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Dayyumm part of me is happy Im not at Imperial now lol. Sorry lol, I know youre gonna have an amazing life but uni is so hard for you. Id probs fail first year lol
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Sinnoh
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(Original post by barror1)
From what I can tell there is going to be face-to-face seminars where possible but larger lectures will be held online! It must be much weirder being in London though :eek3:
Well that sounds alright, I'm sure a lot of people would have just watched lecture recordings anyway hehe. I'll pretty much be at home except for labs and maybe if I'm able to go in to work in the library :indiff:

(Original post by philogrobized)
This GYG looks great. When I was reading your introduction I was wondering whether you would try out for university challenge, and then you mentioned it lmao. Good luck. Can you tag me please? Thanks
thanks. Yeah I tried out for it last year and got to the second round of just 20 or so people, but I did have some insanely lucky guesses in the first round so maybe it was because of that. I like to think I've improved since then from doing quizzes more regularly, but I bet the year I get on the show is the year Imperial set the record for the lowest score ever
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philogrobized
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Well that sounds alright, I'm sure a lot of people would have just watched lecture recordings anyway hehe. I'll pretty much be at home except for labs and maybe if I'm able to go in to work in the library :indiff:


thanks. Yeah I tried out for it last year and got to the second round of just 20 or so people, but I did have some insanely lucky guesses in the first round so maybe it was because of that. I like to think I've improved since then from doing quizzes more regularly, but I bet the year I get on the show is the year Imperial set the record for the lowest score ever
Give yourself some credit. I mean idk you but I doubt that will be the case. If you do get in we're gonna have to guess which one's you lmao.
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Sinnoh
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(Original post by bored_user:))
Dayyumm part of me is happy Im not at Imperial now lol. Sorry lol, I know youre gonna have an amazing life but uni is so hard for you. Id probs fail first year lol
I guess you can't tell in the moment if a decision is ultimately good or bad. Right now I feel like I wouldn't have liked it at Cambridge and that I like it here, but maybe there's a parallel universe where I missed my offer and went into Southampton and I'm also glad I didn't get into Imperial.

ngl looking at other people's experiences, physics seemed to have quite an easy start compared to other courses.
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aconstanthamlet
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Well that sounds alright, I'm sure a lot of people would have just watched lecture recordings anyway hehe. I'll pretty much be at home except for labs and maybe if I'm able to go in to work in the library :indiff:


thanks. Yeah I tried out for it last year and got to the second round of just 20 or so people, but I did have some insanely lucky guesses in the first round so maybe it was because of that. I like to think I've improved since then from doing quizzes more regularly, but I bet the year I get on the show is the year Imperial set the record for the lowest score ever
It would be amazing if you were successful in making the University Challenge team for Imperial! I love University Challenge


How does the selection process work? Is it run by students like a society or does the university run it themselves? Sorry for the questions, I'm really intrigued! I'd love to go on when I go to uni but I'd probably be a dead weight for whichever team was unfortunate enough to have me :lol:
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bored_user:)
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
I guess you can't tell in the moment if a decision is ultimately good or bad. Right now I feel like I wouldn't have liked it at Cambridge and that I like it here, but maybe there's a parallel universe where I missed my offer and went into Southampton and I'm also glad I didn't get into Imperial.

ngl looking at other people's experiences, physics seemed to have quite an easy start compared to other courses.
tbh that is true... like looking at the course structure at every single uni and everyones experience... Physics is the best subject innit . Like... if you aint studying Physics... whatcha studying?
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