NPS Physics Review Tutoring

We started by looking at some problems with Gauss’s Law.

Talked about potential, related it to gravity a bit. How V is like a slope in some ways. Looked a little at integrals.

It’s good to connect ideas in physics a lot of the time. For example, gravitational potential to electric potential. Another is with water pressure and electric circuits.

Tutoring Precalculus at CSUMB

We started by looking at some linear equations. One thing he did not remember was that the slope of a line perpendicular to another line is the negative reciprocal of the other line.

Using parentheses for polynomial division can reduce mistakes.

He had a little trouble with radicals.

One problem involved projectile motion and was like a physics equation in that you need to think about what’s going on more than do complex calculations so much.

Tutoring SAT – inequalities and a passage by Thomas Jefferson

We started by looking at math problems, especially with inequalities. They are similar to equations with an equals sign in many ways.

Part of the time, you want to look at what you have and the expression that is mentioned later and see what you could do to get to that later expression. Here there was a division in one problem and a multiplication (by whole numbers) that did the trick.

Also looked at a passage by Thomas Jefferson. Usually could eliminate a few choices quickly and then choose between two. Sometimes, they are a bit subjective. For a few, a single word in the question was important like, “initial.”

Tutoring SAT – reading section, vocabulary, passage structure

We spent about 2/3 of the hour on the reading section. For some questions, it was about really knowing the definition of words and how they function.

Other times, it was thinking about what a paragraph was about or what the entire passage was about and how certain parts functioned within them.

One question was about punctuation, this could be good to read,

But there were not a lot of questions on punctuation, just a few.

Also looked at some math problems. Sometimes a few words in the question are very important to focus on, words like “constant”. A few questions were significantly harder than the others, including one about decibels and pressure.

Precalculus with Interval Notation in My Math Lab – square/curved

We first looked at plotting a function. It helps to recognize the shape of the graph from the equation, but if you don’t, you still move to the next steps you would even if you know the general shape- you plot specific points.

A good point to start with most of the time is the y-intercept, you get that by setting x equal to zero.

From there, plot a few points. If you know there is symmetry, that can make the calculations easier.

Then we looked at linear equations for a while. We saw how the slope is written before the variable (oftentimes x) and that the y-intercept is the number after that (in slope intercept form).

Found the slope using the equation. And also saw that ‘average rate of change’ is the slope.

Went over interval notation a bit. In ‘My Math Lab’, [ are inclusive and ( are exclusive. You use the exclusive brackets for infinity since it’s not a specific point.

Tutoring Precalculus at MPC

We started by looking at how to factor trinomials. One option is to write two sets of parentheses. From there I look first at the first term, then at the third term. And I use the middle term to guide my choices.

There is another method that uses similar ideas but that is laid out in four sections of a large X.

Talked about when the quadratic formula is useful and used it a few times.

Got into algebraic perfect squares.

Did a bit with inequalities.

Saw some complex numbers.

Used the Pythagorean Theorem once.

Looked at a parabola, intercepts, and symmetry.

Three log rules – power, product, quotient

I tend to use the natural log (ln).

Reviewing for RLS AATP Final

We did problems with trigonometry reviewing for the final.

The six trig functions are the ones in the two acronyms

Sine, cosine, tangent, cosecant, secant, cotangent

One problem had numbers that looked like a 30 60 90 triangle.

A few times, the substitution of 1 = sin^2x + cos^2x

The trig functions can all be written in terms of sine and cosine and really, you could even write everything in terms of sine (but that wouldn’t be useful in this context).

It would help sometimes to be more comfortable with radians.

Why you should not use the Law of Sines if you can use SOHCAHTOA instead

We went over some of the harder problems from previous tests. Some dealt with the Law of Sines and the Law of Cosines.

Others could simply use SOHCAHTOA. If you have a right triangle and one angle and a side (you could get the other angle beside the right angle easily) then you can use SOHCAHTOA.

That will be simpler and less steps and will reduce to the same thing as using the Law of Sines.

How to use logarithms to solve a problem with a variable exponent