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Old 03-22-2018, 05:29 AM
 
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Would you say that a course in Statics requires any previous exposure to physics in general?
I am asking this because I know a few people who are interested in starting physics, and they have enough math skills to be able to calculate integrals, which seems to be the highest level of math necessary for Statics.
Also, I sometimes plow through Statics every now and then just to refresh my own memories of that course, and it seems to me like there isn't really any physics requirements for that - it also seems to be based on math.
The Statics book that I am personally using (R.C. Hibbeler's "Engineering Mechanics: Statics") starts with defining Newton's laws, then it talks a bit about unit conversions and rounding of decimals before introducing position vectors and force vectors, and then it uses those things to define moment - and most other Statics books seem to follow the same structure.
So is there really any need for someone to already know physics when they start Statics?
Or am I so used with math and physics that I take several aspects for granted and fail to notice how new and unfamiliar it would "actually" be to someone who has never studied physics at all?
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Old 03-22-2018, 08:18 AM
 
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Are you asking whether someone who has no previous understanding of concepts like force, work, momentum, velocity, acceleration, etc., and how those relate to calculus, would be adequately prepared for a course in engineering statics?

Since most people who take engineering statics and dynamics have already had 2 semesters of high school physics and 2 semesters of university physics, it seems like there would be a great deal of pre-knowledge assumed.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:58 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turf3 View Post
Are you asking whether someone who has no previous understanding of concepts like force, work, momentum, velocity, acceleration, etc., and how those relate to calculus, would be adequately prepared for a course in engineering statics?

Since most people who take engineering statics and dynamics have already had 2 semesters of high school physics and 2 semesters of university physics, it seems like there would be a great deal of pre-knowledge assumed.
Yes, but it seems to me like Statics only assumes knowledge in mathematics.
Statics seems to only require math knowledge up to single integrals, and Dynamics might be manageable for those who know Statics and are familiar with vector calculus.

I don't know, I just kinda felt that Statics seemed to go through everything that the reader needs to know, and that it was only first-year university math that was expected.
But then again, I might be so used to that course that I don't realise what those who are new to physics will find confusing.
But it does seem like a typical Statics book starts with things like position vectors and force vectors, and those things should be understandable for those who have studied vector calculus, and then the rest of the chapters seem to build upon that.

Of course, different Statics books have different levels of difficulty;
I feel like Hibbeler's book is easier to use and more basic, whereas the book by Meriam/Kraige is somewhat harder and more demanding.
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Old 03-22-2018, 01:46 PM
 
Location: Heart of Dixie
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I found Statics to be a relatively easy course that relied more on math skills than knowledge of physics. Now, when I took the next courses, like Dynamics (F=ma) and Thermodynamics (pV = nRT), things got a bit tougher, and physics definitely comes into play.
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Old 03-22-2018, 03:52 PM
 
Location: Pacific 🌉 °N, 🌄°W
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Physics was not a prerequisite for Statistics when I took it in college.
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Old 03-23-2018, 11:47 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Matadora View Post
Physics was not a prerequisite for Statistics when I took it in college.
Read again. You inserted an "ist" where none existed.
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Old 03-23-2018, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Pacific 🌉 °N, 🌄°W
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Originally Posted by turf3 View Post
Read again. You inserted an "ist" where none existed.
I have no ideal what you're referring to.

I simply answered the OP.
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Old 03-23-2018, 02:39 PM
 
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The OP is asking about STATICS not STATISTICS.

Do you understand the difference?
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Old 03-23-2018, 02:47 PM
 
Location: Pacific 🌉 °N, 🌄°W
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turf3 View Post
The OP is asking about STATICS not STATISTICS.
Ah I see now. I read this post on a tiny screen without my reading glasses.

In that case I don't think it would hurt to take Physics (I) as a prerequisite to statics as it covers Mechanics.
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Old 04-05-2018, 05:51 AM
 
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Thanks for your answers.

I finished my refresher on Statics a while ago and right now I am going through Dynamics, and I would say that while Statics is probably at least manageable for those who have finished a Calculus 1 course, the Dynamics book seems very much too heavy and demanding for those who have no background in basic dynamics.
For example, in an introductory physics book you would get a fairly basic definition of momentum - just enough to be able to use it for certain special cases - but Dynamics is fairly hardcore right from the beginning and gives a formal definition that has been derived by integrating the vector form of Newton's Second Law in terms of v and t, and then uses it for examples such as dependent motion and things like that and expects that the reader has clearly understood everything up to that point.
Also, Dynamics has a funny habit of starting with very general cases and then showing simplified special cases where some term is 0, rather than the other way round, which is an interesting take on things.
This isn't too overwhelming if you are already familiar with fundamental dynamics, but it's probably too much to swallow for a beginner, and it's probably safer to finish Physics 1 before starting with Statics and Dynamics, like a "stepping stone";
kind of like how it's generally better to start with examples in 1 dimension before trying examples in 3 dimensions.

Anyway, both Statics and Dynamics are very rewarding courses, and should definitely be taken by anyone who likes Mechanics.

Last edited by Markus86; 04-05-2018 at 06:08 AM..
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