The Level 1 course is intended to be the first encounter with physics problem solving for students with strong math skills. This course will guide students towards successful first participation at the F = ma competition, which leads to the USAPhO and eventually to the International Physics Olympiads. After this class, students are expected to solve about half of the problems needed to go to the USAPhO. The curriculum will cover the same areas as the F = ma competition, i.e., parts of classical mechanics, at a level beyond Honors / Pre-AP high-school physics. This course will not involve calculus. Recommended for student with no prior experience with physics problem solving. Prerequisites: self-motivation and strong math skills at Algebra 2 level.
Main goal: After taking this course, students will be ready to solve about a third of the problems at the annual F = ma competition in January, considered a great accomplishment for first-time participants and equivalent to passing AMC-10/12 math competition.
To experience the spirit of our classes, please see the recent recording of our "open house" webinar in which we talked about the rules of the F=ma exam, Einstein's discoveries of 1905, and a number of problems from a recent F=ma exam: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lng7_rtpgq0
To get a feel for what to expect at the F=ma contest you can download a free book written by our instructor, Dr.Branislav Kisacanin and his most successful student, three-time USAPhO Gold winner, Eric K. Zhang: https://www.aapt.org/physicsteam/2020/pastexams.cfm (click on the blue box there)
|Who||Students in grades 8th - 9th, occasional 6th - 7th graders, self-motivated|
Full payment required at the time of registration. No checks accepted.
|Course Size||Maximum 15 students|
|Online Q&A Sessions||
Spring 2020 Semester:
Saturdays (6:00pm - 7:00pm CST)
January: 11, 18, 25
February: 8, 15, 22, 29
March: 21, 28
April: 4, 18, 25
No classes: Feb 1, Mar 7, Mar 14, Apr 11
To maximize learning, students are strongly encouraged to attend the weekly online Q&A session. These sessions are recorded and posted online so students who miss them can review them at a later time. While attendance of Q&A Sessions is not mandatory, it is highly recommended.
|Additional Benefits||This course will go a long way to prepare the kids for at least a part of the CBE (Credit by Exam) High School Physics tests, so they can test out of the High School Physics and take AP Physics as soon as the 9th or 10th grade. Again, our primary goal is to prepare the kids for physics competitions; CBE readiness is a side benefit.|
|Expected Prior Knowledge||No prior exposure to physics is required. Very strong math skills are needed equivalent to Algebra 2, especially solving linear and quadratic equations, trigonomertic identities, vector algebra, and exponential and logarithmic functions.|