STUDY GUIDE 1:
Introduction, Vectors, Kinematics
PH 1110 Study Guides are intended to help you achieve the objectives of this course as completely and
as efficiently as possible.
Each Study Guide begins with a listing of OBJECTIVES to which we will
key our instruction, assignments, and exam for that section of the course.
A SUGGESTED STUDY
PROCEDURE follows, including hints and elaborations (always intended to be helpful!) about some of
the more important or challenging concepts, as well as a listing of those end-of-chapter exercises and
problems that best exemplify the application of our course objectives.
Finally, there is a listing of the
HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENTS, due each lecture period during that section of the course.
objectives specify the concepts and tasks we want you to master during this course; the suggested study
procedure and assigned homework provide a playing field on which you can develop your mastery of
those concepts and tasks, prior to examination.
As you prepare to immerse yourself in PH 1110, please keep in mind that physics is more than
On the other hand, no one learns physics without solving lots of problems.
teachers smile at the oft-repeated complaint, "I understand the material, but I can't do any of the
THIS IS SIMPLY NOT TRUE
If you can't do MOST of the problems, you do not yet
understand the physics.
The entire support structure of this course is geared toward helping you learn
how to solve the requisite problems appropriate to learning this physics, but YOU must schedule the
Students reaching the end of this course agree!
On the end-of-course evaluation
form, most students write that their best piece of advice for someone just beginning the course is:
ALL OF THE SUGGESTED EXERCISES AND PROBLEMS!"
And while we're on the subject of things to do, here's a DON'T:
just blindly memorize.
memory has little to do with learning physics.
Almost always, time spent memorizing something
could be better spent working on some illustrative problems.
Through careful and thoughtful problem
solving, those items you need implanted in your memory banks will automatically end up there.
Now back to a DO:
take time to learn from your problem solutions.
(In general, the least important
detail of a solution is the specific numerical answer!)
Did you draw a SKETCH that properly captures
all essential detail of the situation at hand?
What FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE(S) did you apply?
Is there an unbroken logical CHAIN OF REASONING, including proper application of the
fundamental principle(s), connecting the given information all the way through to your answer?
your answer have correct UNITS as well as the proper number of SIGNIFICANT FIGURES?
your answer seem to be of a PROPER SIZE?
This, in a nutshell, is what physics is all about!