Physics Resources

How this resource helps:

Physics students can receive support through PLTL, Drop-in Academic Mentoring, and other Learning Center programs and resources.

Looking for help with Physics 191/192 or Focused Physics 193/194? The Learning Center has you covered!

How to Learn: WashU Physics

In 2020, a Learning Center mentor created a 2-part video series to share skills, tips, and tricks to help students succeed in Physics (and their other courses, too)! The full video series is available on YouTube and our website, or you can check out individual videos below:

  1. Understanding Course Structure
  2. Problem Solving

Peer-Led Team Learning (PLTL)

Peer-Led Team Learning (PLTL) is a model of collaborative learning that supplements large lecture courses, including Physics I and II (191/192). This program is highly structured. Groups of 6-8 students work together to solve problems, and each group is facilitated by a highly-trained student leader. PLTL groups meet once a week for two hours, and students who attend regularly may receive course credit for their participation.

Students are invited to sign up for the program during the first week of classes; instructions and deadlines are provided via email, Canvas, and in-class announcements.

To learn more about this program, visit our PLTL program page.

Drop-in Academic Mentoring

Drop-in Academic Mentors facilitate group learning hours for Physics courses throughout the week in classrooms on the Danforth campus (and occasionally on the South 40). Drop-in sessions typically start during the third week of each Fall and Spring semester and run through the last week of classes. The Learning Center usually offers one weekly session for Focused Physics (193/194), due to the small class size, and multiple weekly sessions for Physics 191/192.

During Drop-in Academic Mentoring sessions, mentors are available to answer questions, help with homework, and promote group learning. Students do not have to sign up to meet with a Drop-in Mentor; they can stop by anytime during a scheduled session and leave at any point.

To learn more about Drop-in Academic Mentoring, visit our Drop-in programs page or check out our mentoring sessions calendar.

Matched Academic Mentoring (MAM)

Matched Academic Mentoring provides supplemental learning opportunities in a small group setting for eligible students in select courses, including Physics 191/192. Students may be eligible for Matched Academic Mentoring if they:

  • Have experienced challenges in key prerequisite courses
  • Have identified significant gaps in their foundational knowledge of a subject
  • Feel like they are falling behind in a class and are struggling to catch up
  • Are on Academic Probation or Academic Warning

Matched Academic Mentoring groups typically meet for 2 hours per week and are capped at 3-4 students, to ensure that mentors are able to provide personalized support in an unstructured small group setting. Regular attendance is expected. Students who are interested in working with a Matched Academic Mentor should fill out the MAM request form, which opens on the first day of classes each Fall and Spring semester. The matching process can take up to 10 business days, depending on the time of year and availability of mentors.

To learn more about Matched Academic Mentoring and access the request form, visit our MAM program page.

McKelvey Engineering Tutoring

Engineering students are eligible to apply for free Physics tutoring through the McKelvey Engineering Tutoring program. This resource is not affiliated with the Learning Center.

To learn more, check out the tutor request form or contact Undergraduate Student Services. (Links last updated August 2023.)