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Algebra Review for Physics 130 Students

Welcome to the MTC's Algebra review and resource page for Physics 130 students at WCU!  Please note that this page is NOT a substitute for going to class or for doing your own work (putting your pencil to paper).  There are lots of resources in the forms of videos, online tutorials, work sheets, and a myriad of other tools; but you won't learn the math without working out the problems yourself - in other words, if you think that watching a video alone is enough for a review, think again.  You need to practice (we all do!).  Even the best mathematicians and phycisists practice a LOT.  Please keep that in mind as you explore the resources here on this page and the ones you find on your own.  Further, remember that your professor, instructor, or lecturer is your FIRST and BEST resource for your course.  There is no subsitute for: attending class regularly, actively participating in class discussions, asking questions in class, doing your homework, studying outside of class, reading (and RE-READING and studying and RE-STUDYING) your text(s), and making time to visit your professor, instructor or lecturer whenever needed.

Also: Do not forget about the Writing and Learning Commons' Physics Tutors!  The WaLC has drop-in Physics Tutors and Tutors with Physics 130 appointment availability. Make an appointment with a tutor today!!

What kind of Algebra and Math can I expect to see in Physics 130?

The best way to answer this is to ask the faculty member teaching your course. That may seem obvious, but it is extremely important to do because no two faculty members teach Physics the exact same way.  Subtle or obvious differences in what a particular faculty member expects and demands of their students can be the difference between a passing or failing grade.  It is worth the time you take to carefully review your syllabus and to ask for clarification when and where needed.  That said, here are some things you can expect to see in your Physics 130 class that you might need to continually review, study, and practice for success.  All of that said, please take a look at the headings below, make use of any of the links you see, and enjoy learning about how the universe works!

Introductory Physics Videos:

  CrashCourse Physics


Vector Math and Math Review Worksheets

Solving for Variables

One place you may want to begin is with the Pythagorean Theorem. Since you will be dealing a lot with Right Triangles, vectors, scalars, and basic Trigonometry, this is a good place to start refreshing yourself on the correct approach and process to solving for variables.   Here is another video on Solving for Variables.  For some more practice with variables, here is a helpful video.

Scientific Notation

Here is a helpful link to a video about Scientific Notation that includes a practice quiz with answers.  Additionally, take a look at this video on Significant Digits.

 SI Units

Here is a document that covers the seven fundamental units of the SI System for your review.  You will make a lot of use of the SI system in Physics 130, so make good use of this document!

More ALGEBRA Review

If you are feeling lost, or feeling like you are really behind after looking at the resources on this page, please make plans to see a Physics Tutor or bring your math questions by the Mathematics Tutoring Center.  Also, do not forget to visit your professor, lecturer or the instructor teaching your class - all of these resources are here for you, but you have to reach out for us to know what help you need.  Best of luck to you in your Physics 130 class!

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