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NUS Physics Module Review: PC2132 Classical Mechanics

This semester lectures were conducted in E-learning format. Originally, Dr Yeo was reluctant to engage students in the chat. After the first few lectures, he opened up and was very willing to talk to students and answer their questions. This was good, as students could directly clear up any misconceptions that the students may have. But at the same time, there were many students who took advantage of his kindness and asked pointless questions, wasting lecture time.

He conducts his lecture not by referring to his prepared lecture slides, but by writing out his derivations and calculations on Microsoft word, or using a whiteboard he has in his office. This was helpful for understanding, as his lecture notes are full of derivations without annotations, which make them extremely challenging to understand. However, he rarely prefaces his derivations and workings with explanations on what he is doing. He prefers to instead work things out, and hope that the students grasps what he is doing along the way.

His lectures are rather challenging to follow. He would move from his whiteboard, to the shared screen, then he’d stop sharing screen to read the chat. This is especially annoying as we would have to keep changing the screen we focus on and sometimes, he would stop sharing screen before the students have caught up with him. This makes his convoluted lectures even more confusing.

The textbook is not much better. Englert’s is just as confusing, requiring more mathematical background to appreciate fully. Nonetheless, if you cannot understand what Dr Yeo is covering in class, Englert is another option you can consider.

My experience with this module was not the best. I found myself not listening to class at all, and then running the recordings at twice or three times the speed to get over all the pointless questions thrown at Dr Yeo over the course of his class. Having the textbook on hand really helps as it allowed me to move at my own pace, and learn from another perspective.

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