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Suggested Strategy for Physics

Physics Paper 1

Section A has three important areas: Classical Mechanics, Special Relativity, Waves and Geometrical Optics and Physical Optics. Since all these three sections give compulsory questions, it's best not to avoid any one. Yet, if you are hard pressed for time, you can be selective about any one section. But it's important that before getting selective you have identified the essential areas based on past trend analysis.

It's best not to be selective at all in Classical Mechanics. Moreover, there is no dearth of good material on this section. Most of the students find this section rather simple to handle. In Special Relativity, the older topics are more important than the newly added ones. So, the students should design the preparation strategy accordingly. In the Waves section, Damped and Forced Vibrations, Phase and Group Velocity should be given priority.

Section B contains: Electricity and Magnetism, EM Theory and Black Body radiation and Thermal and Statistical Physics. All the above three sections carry compulsory questions, hence none can be completely ignored. Questions which come on EM Theory are very simple and quite s c o r i n g . Hence this a re a should be well prepared and the students must not miss the question on this area.

Physics Paper 2

All of the second paper except Electronics can be prepared from two sources, i.e. Quantum Physics by Resnick and Eisberg, and Modern Physics by Arthur Beiser. For value addition, you may require to undertake some extra reading from other standard books.

Electronics is now a prominent part in the course. Students coming from non-electronics background must make some extra effort to master this section thoroughly. Once prepared well, this part is scoring.

Study Tips for IAS Physics Paper

  • Do not leave any part of the course completely, be only smartly selective
  • Thoroughly analyze the past trends before you decide on your focus areas
  • There is no need to give derivation of equation, until you are specifically asked for it. It does not fetch you any extra credit
  • Read the question carefully, identify focus area and answer to the point
  • Clearly explain the units and terms used in the formula
  • Finally, practice a lot of problems before going to the examination hall.