The Socratic Problem Solutions

The Socratic Method is to teach by asking questions. In the following sample problems you are guided to the solution by being asked a series of questions. If your answer is the correct one then you proceed; if it is incorrect then you are provided with a comment on your error and given another chance.

The lessons are useless if you just blindly guess and stumble through the various steps. There is ample research to show that the effectiveness of the lesson is obtained by thinking about your answer at each stage.

The problems are taken with permission from the textbook "Physics for Tomorrow's World" by E.L. McFarland and A.J. Hirsch, (Ed. 2007).

Unit Conversion

Problem 1-18g    Unit conversion

1-D Kinematics

Problem 2-1(c)   Average speed
Problem 2-10   Speed and velocity
Problem 2-43   Free fall
Problem 2-62   Distance and speed
Problem 2-86   Linear Kinematics
Problem 2-95   Linear Kinematics
Problem 2-98   Linear Kinematics
Problem 2-99   v-t graph
Problem 2-101   Linear Kinematics

Vector Basics

Problem 3-9   Vector sum
Problem 3-25b   Vector difference

2-D Kinematics

Problem 4-11   Free fall
Problem 4-12   Vector components
Problem 4-16   Projectile
Problem 4-21   Projectile
Problem 4-23   Projectile
Problem 4-54   Projectile
Problem 4-57   Projectile

Uniform Circular Motion

Problem 4-62   Centripetal acc.
Problem 4-72   Centripetal acc.

Forces and Newton's Laws

Problem 5-51   Force and Kinematics
Problem 5-57   Translational Equil.
Problem 5-62   F, accel., and tension
Problem 5-102   Friction force
Problem 5-108  Force and Kinematics

Problem 6-4   Friction coefficients
Problem 6-7   Friction coefficient
Problem 6-11   Dynamics with friction
Problem 6-47  Dynamics with friction

Forces and Circular Motion

Problem 6-23   Centripetal force
Problem6-53 parts (a), (b), and (c)  Centripetal force

Work, Energy and Power

Problem 7-23   Work
Problem 7-35   Work-energy theorem
Problem 7-43   Work, grav. PE
Problem 7-49(b)   Energy cons.
Problem 7-51   Energy cons.
Problem 7-62   Energy cons. with friction
Problem 7-65   Energy cons. with friction
Problem 7-83   Power

Momentum and Collisions

Problem 8-34   Elastic collision
Problem 8-43   2 dim. collision
Problem 8-61   Cons. of Momentum
Problem 8-75  Inelastic collision
Problem 8-82   Impulse-momentum
Problem 8-86  Inelastic collision

Universal Gravitation

Problem 9-56  Vector Gravitational  Field
Problem 9-76  Geosynchronous orbit

Electric Charge, Force and Fields

Problem 10-31(a) Vector electric field
Problem 10-38 Addition of Electric fields
Problem 10-40 Vector electric field
Problem 10-49 Electron deflection

Electric Potential Energy, Electric Potential and Current

Problem 11-33 Electric potential
Problem 11-35 Potential and kinematics
Problem 11-46 Current and potential change
Problem 11-55  Potential and kinematics in thundercloud
Problem 11-71 Grav & Elec Potential

Electrical Resistance and Circuits

Problem 12-14 Ohm's law
Problem 12-22 Simple circuit
Problem 12-42 Electric power
Problem 12-58 Resistor network

Waves, Interference, Refraction and Diffraction of Light

Problem 13-32 Standing waves on string
Problem 13-72 Double source interference
Problem 14-10 Double Slit
Problem 14-37 Snell's Law
Problem 14-83 Diffraction