Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Building a foundation, starting with physics

Author: Kyle Watts

When you break it down, all sciences are derived from physics. Think about it, psychology is the biology of the brain. Biology is just the study of biochemical reactions. Biochemistry(or organic chemistry) is simply complex chemical reactions. Chemistry is just molecular physics summed up into a table(The periodic table). Finally, molecular physics is defined by the weak nuclear force of the fundamental forces of physics. Even the four fundamental forces of physics can be broken down into one Grand Unified Theory of Physics. Basically, the universe can be defined by a few basic principles.

This is why I have a new approach at understanding any field of research. To study a specific field we must break it down into its components. If I wanted to pursue research in the field of biology, I would first grasp a significant understanding of physics. Once I had a firm grasp on physics I would study chemistry and then organic chemistry. Only when I had a firm understanding of these gateway sciences would I start to study Biology. Some of you who are reading this are thinking that educational programs are designed with this in mind. But, the reality is, branched out scientific fields are receiving minimal or no education of these other important sciences. A person working on a psychology degree only has to take a few courses in biology and usually no courses in chemistry or physics. This is a fundamental flaw in enrolling in specialized scientific university programs. In many cases, much of the important science overlooked.

There are a few drawbacks to this method of learning. One is that it would take a much greater amount of time to learn everything from the ground up. Another is the fact that many people can't grasp all of these concepts. For example, I know a lot of people who flunked high school physics that eventually went on to become biologists. And a third problem would be that many people may not have the patients to learn with this method.

Despite the problems with this method of learning I believe that it is in the best interest of our society that we start creating programs that involve this type of learning. Maybe this isn't for everyone, but I think that even if there are only a small number of people that benefit from this method that they would become innovators and inventors. They would be the people that would push the boundary of scientific discovery to a new level. It is a difficult path but a necessary one if we wish to push science to its limits.

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