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  • 7 major areas of physics

    mechanics, thermodynamics, vibrations and wave phenomena, optics, electromagnetism, relativity, quantum mechanics

    motion and its causes, interactions between objets


    heat and temperature


    specific types of repetitive motions

    vibrations and wave phenomena



    electricity, magnetism, and light


    particles moving at any speed, including very high speeds


    behavior of submicroscopic particles

    quantum mechanics

    a pattern, plan, representation, or description designed to show the structure or working of an object, system, or concept


    many of the models currently used in physics are ________ models


    physicists often use _______ to explain the most fundamental features of various phenomena


    a set of particles or interacting components considered to be a distinct physical entity for the purpose of study


    an explanation that is based on prior scientific research or observations and that can be tested


    an experiment that tests only one factor at a time by using a comparison of a control group with an experimental group

    controlled experiment

    in an experiment to test a hypothesis, you must change _____ _______ at a time to determine what influences the phenomenon you are observing

    one variable

    the description of what kind of physical quantity is represented by a certain measurement is called ________


    three basic dimensions

    length, mass, time

    physical quantities that can be described as a combination of length, mass, and time (the three basic dimensions)

    force, velocity, energy, volume, acceleration

    the description of how much of a physical quantity is represented by a certain numerical measurement


    although each dimension is unique, a dimension can be measured using different ______

    units (ex. time can be measured in seconds, hours, or years)

    how many SI base units are there?


    base unit of length


    base unit of mass


    base unit of time


    SI uses ________ to accommodate extremes


    measurements of physical quantities must be expressed in units that match the ________ of that quantity


    measurements used in calculations should have the same _____


    a description of how close a measurement is to the correct or accepted value of the quantity measured


    the degree of exactness of a measurement


    a numeric measure of confidence in a measurement or result is known as ________


    during an experiment if some measurements are taken using one method, and some are taken using another method ______ _______ will result

    method error

    method error can be greatly reduced by _________ the method of taking measurements


    poor _______ involves errors that can often be corrected


    a lack of _______ is typically due to limitations of the measuring instrument and is not the result of human error or lack of calibration


    those digits in a measurement that are known with certainty plus the first digit that is uncertain

    significant figures

    a common convention used in science to indicate precision is known as ________ _________

    significant figures

    significant figures are the ones that we know for ______, as well as the first digit that is ________

    certain -- uncertain

    in scientific notation, the measurement is recorded to a power of 10, and all of the figures given are _________


    zeros between other nonzero digits are ________

    significant (ex. 50.3 has 3 significant figures)

    zeros in front of nonzeros are ________

    not significant (ex. 0.892 has 3 significant figures)

    zeros that are at the end of a number and also to the right of the decimal are _________

    significant (ex. 57.00 has 4 significant figures)

    significant figures rule for addition and subtraction

    round the final answer to the first column from the left containing an estimated digit

    significant figures rule for multiplication and division

    final answer has the same number of significant figures as the measurement have the smallest number of significant figures

    physicists use the tools of mathematics to describe measures or pre directed relationships between _______ ________ in a situation

    physical quantities

    to make expressions as simple as possible, physicists often use ______ to describe specific quantities in an equation


    ______ _____ ______ estimates can also be used to estimate numbers in situations in which little information is given


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