What equations do I need to know for the electricity topic in GCSE or IGCSE Physics exams and how do I learn them?
It depends which specification that you are doing but most of the specifications such as AQA, OCR, Edexcel, CIE and Eduqas require memorization or being familiar with the following equations. This list will come in useful whether you are doing IGCSE physics or GCSE physics.
It is important that you learn both the symbols and units for each of the concepts.
e.g Q is the symbol for Charge and the unit for Charge is Coulombs or capital C.
Some students find it useful to use mnemonics to help memorize the symbols for equation.
One example that I have seen elsewhere on the internet is to use the mnemonic ‘Cutie Viper’ to remember all the symbols. Think of a cute snake that loves electricity to remember the mnemonic. Ridiculous I know but it was works!
More examples of using mnemonics is to link words or symbols to more memorable ideas. For example, a way of remembering Q is the symbol for charge. Is the ‘Queen is in Charge’ to link Q to Charge. You could say that the ‘Queen is in Charge of Columbus’. Linking the tricky unit Coulombs to Q and Charge. Columbus is almost an anagram of Coulombs.
I personally feel the best way is to make flashcards and keep rewriting and saying the equations out loud. If you can get a parent, classmate or friend to test you even better. It is important that you think of all the different arrangements of each equation as well.
Example if you know the equation V = I x R. First ask yourself what V , I and R stand for ie Voltage, Current and Resistance and then ask yourself what would the equations for I and R be ?
Some online resources like Memrise, Quizlet and a new app called 23 equations seem to work well. But I still think any of these methods are a poor substitute for writing and rewriting. Try and make up your own codes that are personal to you if you think this will help. You are much more likely to remember them.
The final stage should be applying the equations to problems by printing off past papers from the exam board’s website or getting your teacher to give you papers with several questions. Some of the questions may involve more than one equation these are called multi-step problems. The best way to get the hang of it is to keep practicing. Don’t write all the equations down when practicing you will keep looking them up and not memorizing them. Applying and using the equations is the best way to learn them and remember. that Repetition, repetition and more repetition is key!