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Physics thinker - Stanford Supplement Intellectual Vitality


lch920619x 5 / 19  
Dec 22, 2011   #1
Hi, here is my essay for Stanford. Actually I do not grab the meaning of the prompt very well. So this is my attempt. Can you give any advice? Both on grammar and content?

Thanks in advance.

Stanford students possess an intellectual vitality. Reflect on an idea or experience that has been important to your intellectual development. 2000

I would like to describe myself as a "Physics Thinker", for I would never be satisfied until I can really understand every physics principle I learn. I believe that real mastery of a physics concept is something far more than mathematical formula on books, but a result of effort of independent thinking and exploring.

When we learnt the Coulomb's Law and Newton's law of universal gravitation, they were merely two equations. Even if there were explanations, they would be as simple: the further the separation, the smaller the force, because there is an "r2" in the denominator. I had no difficulty understanding what I was taught, but I had a feeling in my mind that there was something unanswered. Why are the two laws somewhat similar but different? How is the concept of field shown? What does Einstein mean by "gravitational wave"? There must be some link! I failed to grab that feeling of glimpse until one day. I saw on a mathematics book the surface area of a sphere. Suddenly I saw the light. By combining the surface area of sphere, the formulas for Coulomb's Law and Newton's Law, and the concept of field, I realized the essence of the above-mentioned two laws. Both electromagnetic field and gradational field propagate in the space, and the field generated in a small period of time expands to be an approximate spherical shell. I felt proud and delighted, for having an in-depth understanding of the problem. I discussed with my physics tutor about my way of understanding. He was amazed by this approach that was absent in any textbooks he has read. He promised me that he would try to modify the notes to add in my approach for the students to have a better level of understanding.

It was only one of my stories. Such approach of learning is a must for me. From the simple Newtonian Physics to the complicated Quantum Mechanics, I have never left any single concept out without my own thinking. And I will continue to do so, to be a thinker.

Prettywings 1 / 74  
Dec 22, 2011   #2
You're essay is nicely written and very informative--I learned a couple of things. The only thing I saw absent, was some kind of connection--something that states how or why this discovery has advanced your intellectual development. Other than that, I think you've done a really great job.
devansh1411 2 / 5  
Dec 23, 2011   #3
Hey, that is a good one. I love physics too! Consider making it a little less technical and more personalized for the adcoms though
Otherwise, it answers the question directly
DesiGirl 9 / 52  
Dec 23, 2011   #4
I think you need to address the 2nd part of the prompt a bit better but I did love the realization! Fascinating!!
Walden 2 / 30  
Dec 26, 2011   #5
I like the essay overall but because you used so much of the space up with technical terms you left out the part in which it applies to real world situations in which you use the theoretical knowledge for something useful in physical terms. By doing that you can connect better to how stanford can help you reach your goals.


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