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Such analytical skills are useful both for solving problems in this text and for applying physics in everyday life. With practice, the basics of problem solving become almost automatic.As you are probably well aware, a certain amount of creativity and insight is required to solve problems. One way to get practice is to work out the text’s examples for yourself as you read.
It is much more powerful than memorizing a list of facts.
Analytical skills and problem-solving abilities can be applied to new situations whereas a list of facts cannot be made long enough to contain every possible circumstance.
This begins with very basic physics, but continues with higher level material.
The difference seems to be that only those who like physics – and find a good way of dealing with it – stick around to deal with the higher level stuff. You don’t have to understand all the small details, but once you know what you’re dealing with in general, you will know how to formulate your answer and which equations to use.
Another is to work as many end-of-section problems as possible, starting with the easiest to build confidence and then progressing to the more difficult.
After you become involved in physics, you will see it all around you, and you can begin to apply it to situations you encounter outside the classroom, just as is done in many of the applications in this text.
Problem-solving skills are clearly essential to success in a quantitative course in physics.
More important, the ability to apply broad physical principles—usually represented by equations—to specific situations is a very powerful form of knowledge.
A useful problem-solving strategy was presented for use with these equations and two examples were given that illustrated the use of the strategy.
Then, the application of the kinematic equations and the problem-solving strategy to free-fall motion was discussed and illustrated.