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Biology -- Chemistry -- Physics

I-am-a-panda
Posts: 15,380
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3/3/2010 11:26:00 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
Correct me if I'm wrong, but them more we transition of one subject up (E.g. Biology to chemistry and chemistry to physics), there is less emphasis on learning facts off and more emphasis on understanding concepts.

For example, my current science course in broken into those 3 areas, and it's apparent that Biology is simply Learn of X, what it does to Y, etc. In Chemistry you still need to know Chemical equations, but there is an emphasis on understanding how chemicals bond and react. Physics is mainly understanding how physics works and laws, with little emphasis on simply learning facts.

Thoughts?
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mattrodstrom
Posts: 12,028
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3/3/2010 11:29:29 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/3/2010 11:26:00 AM, I-am-a-panda wrote:
Correct me if I'm wrong, but them more we transition of one subject up (E.g. Biology to chemistry and chemistry to physics), there is less emphasis on learning facts off and more emphasis on understanding concepts.

For example, my current science course in broken into those 3 areas, and it's apparent that Biology is simply Learn of X, what it does to Y, etc. In Chemistry you still need to know Chemical equations, but there is an emphasis on understanding how chemicals bond and react. Physics is mainly understanding how physics works and laws, with little emphasis on simply learning facts.

Thoughts?

That's why I got a C in Chem, a B in Bio, and an A in Physics.

Chems lots of memorization of seemingly random formulas (the worst)
Bio's memorization of stuff
and in physics you can pretty much derive all the formulas from the concepts themselves :)
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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3/3/2010 11:41:35 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/3/2010 11:29:29 AM, mattrodstrom wrote:
At 3/3/2010 11:26:00 AM, I-am-a-panda wrote:
Correct me if I'm wrong, but them more we transition of one subject up (E.g. Biology to chemistry and chemistry to physics), there is less emphasis on learning facts off and more emphasis on understanding concepts.

For example, my current science course in broken into those 3 areas, and it's apparent that Biology is simply Learn of X, what it does to Y, etc. In Chemistry you still need to know Chemical equations, but there is an emphasis on understanding how chemicals bond and react. Physics is mainly understanding how physics works and laws, with little emphasis on simply learning facts.

Thoughts?

That's why I got a C in Chem, a B in Bio, and an A in Physics.

Chems lots of memorization of seemingly random formulas (the worst)
Bio's memorization of stuff
and in physics you can pretty much derive all the formulas from the concepts themselves :)

That's funny, it was the opposite for me. A in Chemistry, B in Biology, and C in Physics. However, high school physics emphasizes the laws of motion which are grounded in complex equations. It does not go into quantum physics at all.
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belle
Posts: 4,113
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3/3/2010 11:45:30 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
lol quantum physics has even more complicated equations. i'm sure they leave it out because most high school students don't have a prayer of a chance of understanding it.
evidently i only come to ddo to avoid doing homework...
I-am-a-panda
Posts: 15,380
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3/3/2010 11:45:31 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
The problem lies when you don't understand these concepts.

For example, if you don't understand the law of the lever, or the way ionic compounds are formed, then they're extremely hard to study.

With Biology as long as you study you can get a good grade.
Pizza. I have enormous respect for Pizza.
Floid
Posts: 751
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3/3/2010 3:04:28 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Well, you have a point some what but I think it is due to the nature of the sciences.

Well, all sciences should be learned on the level of concepts (sometimes concepts require memorization). Biology has a lot more memorization because it isn't as math based as chemistry of physics. What you are trying to describe in biology is often based on lots of observations and not so much on what a mathematical formula can describe.

Now chemistry can almost be considered a subset of physics in that on some levels both physics and chemistry share complete common ground (quantum mechanics for example). Most often what you learn about chemistry is closer to an engineering approach to chemistry. You take some useful generalizations of some very complex physical laws and use them to do things like balance chemical equations and predict chemical reactions.

Then physics is the most basic of all the sciences, it attempts to describe everything mathematically which is why it probably seems the least based on "memorization" (except you could memorize all the equations for course)!

But I think what is often missed in science education and especially in high school education is that what is most important in all science is to really understand the general concepts and not necessarily the specifics (although both doesn't hurt!).

Being able to solve equations or recite the names of things doesn't do you any good in the real world if you don't know how to apply those equations or what they imply about real events.
bkelley211
Posts: 74
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3/3/2010 10:24:56 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/3/2010 11:26:00 AM, I-am-a-panda wrote:
Correct me if I'm wrong, but them more we transition of one subject up (E.g. Biology to chemistry and chemistry to physics), there is less emphasis on learning facts off and more emphasis on understanding concepts.

For example, my current science course in broken into those 3 areas, and it's apparent that Biology is simply Learn of X, what it does to Y, etc. In Chemistry you still need to know Chemical equations, but there is an emphasis on understanding how chemicals bond and react. Physics is mainly understanding how physics works and laws, with little emphasis on simply learning facts.

Thoughts?

I agree, for the most part. There is a lot of memorization in biology. As you advance, you begin to use vocabulary and suffix and prefix meanings to actually remember everything. It begins to tie together and make sense.

There are people who can "memorize" physics, but it is difficult. Agree that understanding concepts can lead to answering most questions correctly. Physics is a lot like math in the sense that some people just get it and others don't. If you get it, it's easy and you probably won't have to work that hard.

Agree with chemistry as well. Not as much vocabulary as biology, not as conceptual as physics. It really helps to understand what you can memorize and what you can figure out.
mattrodstrom
Posts: 12,028
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3/4/2010 8:06:18 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
eh, Math only has validity b/c it's a method of interpreting physical reality so...

PHYSICS... and math
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
mattrodstrom
Posts: 12,028
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3/4/2010 8:08:45 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
eh, I don't know...

Math I think is arisen from being able to observe and consider distinctions.... and that is what causes us to think of physical reality...so I'd say they're both born of Distinction...

They're siblings.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
belle
Posts: 4,113
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3/4/2010 8:11:37 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/4/2010 8:06:18 AM, mattrodstrom wrote:
eh, Math only has validity b/c it's a method of interpreting physical reality so...

PHYSICS... and math

not really! does logic need to apply to actual entities to make sense? not at all...

its like saying since you have to be alive to do science biology is the basis of all of them....
evidently i only come to ddo to avoid doing homework...
mattrodstrom
Posts: 12,028
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3/4/2010 8:12:41 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
They're siblings.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
RoyLatham
Posts: 4,488
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3/5/2010 4:53:59 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
I think you are right, biology has a lot of observational data that requires memorization, whereas physics is more conceptual. Most of the basic formulas of physics are simple, but the math gets heavy quickly. For example, the f=ma acting on each link of chain quickly gets into nasty functions for the shape of a chain supported by the two ends. Advanced physics is virtually all mathematics.

I didn't like the memorization in biology, but it turns out to be useful stuff to know in the long run. It helps make sense of how the world works.
RoyLatham
Posts: 4,488
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3/5/2010 4:56:21 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/5/2010 12:25:13 PM, badger wrote:
Did any of you do applied maths?

I have a degree in applied math. It's useful. It always thought statistics was the most fun, but that's a minority viewpoint.
badger
Posts: 11,793
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3/6/2010 10:09:02 AM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 3/5/2010 4:56:21 PM, RoyLatham wrote:
At 3/5/2010 12:25:13 PM, badger wrote:
Did any of you do applied maths?

I have a degree in applied math. It's useful. It always thought statistics was the most fun, but that's a minority viewpoint.

I haven't gone onto statistics yet, but statics has been my favourite so far.
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