Introduction to SAT II Physics

(Darren Dugan) #1
Waves 15–19% 11–

Waves 10% 7–

Optics 7% 5–

Modern Physics 8–12% 6–

Special Relativity 1–2% 1–

Atomic Models 3% 2–

Quantum Physics 2% 1–

Nuclear Physics 3% 2–

Miscellaneous 2–4% 1–

Graph Analysis 1–2% 0–

Equation Manipulation 0.5–1% 0–

Significant Digits and Lab Skills 0.5–1% 0–

The chapters of this book are organized according to these categories. If a physics topic is not in
this book, you don’t need to know it. Here’s some other helpful information:
You need to know: the formulas expressing physical relationships (such as F = ma), how to
manipulate equations, how to read a graph
You don’t need to know: trig identities, calculus, three-dimensional vectors and graphs, physical
constants (such as G = 6.67 10 –11 N·m^2 kg⁄^2 )

Format of SAT II Physics

SAT II Physics is a one-hour-long test composed of 75 questions and divided into two parts. You
can answer questions in any order you like, though you’re less likely to accidentally leave a
question out if you answer them in the order in which they appear. Part A—classification
questions—takes up the first 12 or 13 questions of the test, while Part B—five-choice completion
questions—takes up the remaining 62 or 63 questions.

Part A: Classification Questions

Classification questions are the reverse of normal multiple-choice question: they give you the
answers first and the questions second. You’ll be presented with five possible answer choices, and
then a string of two to four questions to which those answer choices apply. The answer choices are
usually either graphs or the names of five related laws or concepts. Because they allow for several
questions on the same topic, classification questions will ask you to exhibit a fuller understanding
of the topic at hand.
The level of difficulty within any set of questions is generally pretty random: you can’t expect the
first question in a set to be easier than the last. However, each set of classification questions is

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