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SAT Physics Formulas

Want to make your college applications look impressive? Take SAT Subject Tests in addition to the regular SAT.

Even though these tests will only be offered through the summer of 2021, and they focus on just one subject, they still offer a host of benefits for students who choose to take them:

  • SAT Subject Tests highlight your strengths: Are you great at chemistry? Are you practically fluent in Spanish. These tests are your chance to show college admissions boards what you have to offer.
  • SAT Subject Tests showcase your interests: If you want to major in biology and the schools on your list have competitive biology programs, taking the Subject Test for biology will show the school that you are serious about this course of study and qualified for admittance.
  • SAT Subject Tests provide college credit: Some colleges and universities offer course credit for high Subject Tests scores, allowing you to save time and money as you further your education.

If you want your application to stand out, I highly recommend that you take the SAT Subject Tests for the subjects you know and enjoy the most.

If Physics is your strong suit, you can take the SAT Physics Subject Test. While this is a complicated subject and the test might seem daunting, there are strategies you can use to make the test more manageable.

One of the most valuable strategies for doing well on the SAT Physics Subject Test is to memorize important physics formulas in advance.

You only have 60 minutes to answer 75 multiple choice questions, and you will not be provided with a formula chart to help you out. The SAT Physics Subject Test also does not allow test takers to use a calculator on the exam.

If you don’t know the physics formulas that you will need to solve the questions on the test, or you are struggling to remember them in the heat of the moment, you are not going to earn a good score.

It’s critical that you memorize the most important formulas and use them on practice tests so that you are ready when it’s time for you to take the SAT Physics Subject Test.

Here are 11 key formulas you should know off the top of your head on test day:

1. Gravity

Newton’s Law of Gravitation: Fg=the force of gravity; G= constant; m1,m2 =masses; r= distance of separation


2. Acceleration

The definition of acceleration: a= acceleration; v= change in velocity; t = change in time


3. Force

Newton’s Second Law: F= force; m= mass; a= acceleration


4. Momentum

The definition of momentum: p = momentum; m= mass; v= velocity


5. Potential energy

The definition of potential energy: PE = potential energy; m= mass g= acceleration; h= height

PE= mgh

6. Centripetal acceleration

The centripetal acceleration of an object moving in a circle: ac= centripetal acceleration; v= velocity; r= radius


7. Spring force

Hooke’s Law: Fs=spring force; k= spring constant; x=compression


8. Electric force

Coulomb’s Law: F = electric force; k = constant; q1, q2 = charges; r = distance of separation


9. Circuit voltage

Ohm’s Law: V= voltage; I= current; R= resistance


10. Wave velocity

Formula for light and sound wave velocity: v = wave velocity; λ = wavelength; f = frequency


11. Pressure

The definition of pressure: P= pressure; F= force; A= area


The SAT Physics Subject Test covers kinematics, dynamics, circuitry, energy, power, circular motion, torques, momentum, springs, gravity, waves and optics, electric fields, pressure, relativity, and thermodynamics.

In addition to the eleven key formulas provided above, you will want to memorize formulas that fall under these topics in order to ensure you’re prepared for the test.

This is where Prep Expert can help you.

Prep Expert offers private, online tutoring in a variety of subjects, including SAT Subject Tests. Whether you want help so that you can do well on the SAT Physics Subject Test or you are trying to boost your grade and better understand the material in your physics class, we have you covered.

Find out how you can learn to master physics and understand the theory behind important physics formulas when you visit our website and sign up for private tutoring.

Prep Expert

Written by Prep Expert

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