Being bad at math is one thing. But being bad at physics – because you are bad at math – is another.
The truth is, there’s no reason to be penalised twice for your lack of mathematical sense. Although physics does feature a lot of mathematics, it is more than just math. With a little bit of effort and the right study techniques, overcoming the hurdle of mathematics to do well in physics is definitely possible.
Don’t believe it? Try it out for yourself! Here are some tips for those of you who are struggling with physics because you see mathematics as your nemesis:
Before you go off thinking that formulae are not important, that’s not what it means! For people who find it difficult to remember numbers and formulae, we’re saying that it is easier to internalise the logic behind the formulae rather than memorise it straight.
Putting the formulae into words and scenarios is a more intuitive way for some people. So, if you find it easier to make up little stories or examples to help you remember the formulae, go ahead!
If you don’t even have any idea where to begin, this is what you need to do. Look at the answer keys to exam questions and figure out how the problem needs to be solved. After a while, you will start to notice patterns – for example, which formulae are used to find out certain things, and how to substitute the right numbers into the formula.
When you go through a lot of past exam questions, you will also begin to see which are the most common questions that appear. By figuring out how to solve these, you will at least be guaranteed to comfortably pass the paper.
Practise a lot
Super cliché, we know, but that’s how it is. After all, math is a skill. It is something you need to practice and get familiar with to be able to get comfortable with it. Even if you dislike mathematics, or are terrible at it, practice will help you know the steps needed to arrive at the answer.
With enough practice, you will be able to recall the correct procedure to solve different types of problems, even if you are not an expert at math.
A dislike or weakness in mathematics often leads to a fear of mathematics. Students may want to shun mathematics altogether, and hate anything with mathematics involved. But it doesn’t have to be so!
If you don’t want your struggle with mathematics to carry over to physics, you need to find your motivation for learning physics. Once you convince yourself that learning physics is important, and you want to do well in it, you will feel more motivated to face your fear or dislike for mathematics, and overcome it.
Of course, if you are struggling with the physics subject in any way, opting to enrol in a physics tuition class is also one way to go about it. With the guidance of a subject expert, you are more likely to receive effective instructions that will help you improve in the subject. Great physics tuition teachers will also have a number of efficient study tricks to help students grasp physics concepts in the most painless manner.
So, don’t let mathematic hinder you – put these tips to the test and conquer the physics subject!