Need some good advice

<p>Hi guys, </p>

<p>My name is Tom. I currently perusing a civil engineering degree. This is my first post so I'll start by telling a little bit about myself. First, I never graduated high school. My education was cut short when I was 17 years old. I was also a below average student before I left. Fast forward to the current day! I'm currently in a cc studying engineering science. I've nearly 60 credits and I've recieved all A's except for one B. the reason my grades are good is because I study really hard. The thing is, I've never taken a physics class in my life. I've never even seen a physics book. This has me very concerned. Everybody I talk to says its the hardest subject to take. These comments are continuously playing with my mind. I'm going to be taking engineering physics next September and I'm hoping you guys could answer a few questions for me.
1. How hard is it?
2. How much harder will it be for me?
3. Is it possible to learn myself over the summer. If so, can you give advice on how to do this. </p>

<p>Some background on my math skills. I recieved an A in calc 1 and am working REALLY hard to recieve an A in calc 2. </p>

<p>If I could get some feed back I'd be so thankful. I obviously have confidence issues because of my earlier education. So your feed back will help a lot.</p>

<p>Thanks,
Tom</p>

<p>
[quote]
1. How hard is it?

[/quote]
</p>

<p>It's hard to say, without knowing how the physics classes you will take will be taught. Some physics classes are very calculus-based, for example. Others are applied to a particular domain (e.g. human physiology).</p>

<p>
[quote]
2. How much harder will it be for me?

[/quote]
</p>

<p>This also depends on a number of factors, such as what the teacher/professor focuses on; how grades are distributed; how prepared the other students are.</p>

<p>
[quote]
3. Is it possible to learn myself over the summer. If so, can you give advice on how to do this.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>This is quite possible. There are numerous web sites and review books on physics available. Look at ocw.mit.edu and cramster.com, for example. It would probably be best to contact whoever is teaching the class, tell him or her about your concerns, and ask which study/review materials would be best.</p>

<p>Good luck!</p>

<p>Tom, the first thing is that you have dispelled the notion that you are not a good student. All As except for one B shows you can do the work. (Yes, cc is generally easier than 4-year college but your grades show you can do the work.) </p>

<p>As for physics, I found Physics 1 to be relatively easy and physics 2 to be dfficult, but I was taking it at the same time I took Organic Chemistry 2 which is the most difficult I have ever taken in my life. You are an engineering major and have to take physics so just do it. Might it be difficult? Sure. But you may find you have an aptitude for it. If you have trouble with it, seek help. But you can do the math.</p>

<p>As for learning yourself, take a look at MIT opencourseware. They should have a physics class which you can use to see how you like it and how difficult it may be for you when you have to take the class for credit.</p>

<p>In order to do well in physics you need to have good math skills. Given your grades in calculus I think you are in great shape. You are clearly also a hard worker. When you take physics just make sure you truly understand the work at each step and go to your professor with questions if you don't. You are going to be fine. Good Luck!</p>

<p>Thanks for your replies guys. I'll check out those websits. I guess for me this is just a fear of the unknown.
I also have one other question. How would you compare inorganic chem 1&2 to physics?</p>

<p>If you are talking about General Chemistry 1 and 2, I found it easier than physics. But that's just me. </p>

<p>As for the fear of the unknown, my best advice to you is not to pre-worry. You have to take the classes that you have to take. As you go through the term, do the best you can to allocate your time as efficiently as you can. When you run into difficulty, ask for help. We are all different and what may be difficult for one may not be difficult for another. I was just speaking to a colleague (who is a very smart guy) yesterday who said the hardest class he ever took was differential equations. I laughed and said it was one of the easiest classes I ever took. </p>

<p>Good luck. You'll be fine.</p>

<p>Thanks very much!</p>

<p>Phys 1 really isn't that bad, especially if you have the work ethic. The ability to have some spacial reasoning was key to me...ie being able to SEE (in my mind) how the forces would come into play with one another. It's all easy peasy until you come into the applications of Newtons Laws and then it gets a bit more complicated. Anyway, it is not the end all of classes. I took it at my university, after never have a physics class before as well, and with a solid work ethic was #1 or 2 in my class. Same thing is happening this semester with Phys 2. Btw, I did horrible in HS too. We all grow up. You just have to start having a little more confidence in your abilities.
Good luck,
Chuck</p>