2015 Nov

Approaches to Understanding Physics

November 5, 2015

Mnemonic in Physics Tuition Classes

Physics is one of the most complicated subjects to properly comprehend, even when repeatedly reading the same passages in the textbook in attempt to fully grasp the concepts. However, this is a static mnemonic technique; learning solely by rote is insufficient. The trick to understanding concepts in physics is to realize that it has many faces. Physics can be understood by using discovery, dynamic mnemonic techniques, analytical approaches, and acting on the need for self-actualization.

Discovery learning

Discovery learning is based on the concept that it is easier to memorize ideas and facts if they are “discovered” as if for the first time. Physics concepts are often too complex to understand when first going through the material – hence it can be easier to learn the concept through a procedure which gives the pupil the chance to make the discovery. Practical assignments provide a medium for discovery learning, and is currently the best method available.

Dynamic mnemonic techniques

There are countless varieties of dynamic mnemonic techniques. These differ from static techniques in that they cover the multiple “faces” of physics. Contrary, static techniques only work for one focus of physics at a time. For instance, watching an animation video of concepts of motion will not only aid the memorization process, but also allows one to easily draw inferences from what is seen, and enables one to apply what is seen to other problems. Reading only one example, in black text, will make it harder for one to apply to other problems, as there is only one scenario. More content can be covered in a video than in plain black text, and we’ll use more of these during our A Level Physics tuition classes.

Another example is by highlighting key words in a passage of text. This enables a pupil to easily identify which aspects are important, especially when revising. Additionally, if different colors are used, it is also possible that each color assigned to a particular section of text can assist memorization. Whereas merely summarizing the text will only identify the important aspects.

Analytical approaches

Another method to successfully comprehend concepts in physics is by analytical approach. But what does this mean exactly? It entails the ability to attempt to understand more complex topics within the learning material. Various different analytical techniques, such as asking critical questions, can be used to identify vital information.


The last approach focuses on realizing the need for self-actualization. If a pupil feels that physics is important for their personal development or that it is a potential career choice, he/she will ultimately persevere. This is the most crucial obstacle to overcome (in the path to understanding concepts in physics). The sooner you realize what your priorities are, the easier it becomes to achieve your goals.

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