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AP Physics C Equation Sheet, Explained

Jan 5, 2023

AP Physics (C) Equation Sheet

Both AP physics (C) tests include a handy information page with the exam packet on test day. The AP Physics C equation sheet is an information sheet that is jam-packed with physics formulae and equations, making it highly valuable for studying and taking the AP physics (C) examinations. This information sheet is jam-packed with physics formulae and equations, making it highly valuable for studying and taking the AP physics (C) examinations.

The three-page equations sheet presented on the AP physics (C) tests has a lot of information. It’s crucial to be familiar with the material on the sheet and how to use it to your advantage during the AP examinations.
We’ll also perform the following in this tutorial to assist you in learning the details of the AP physics (C) reference tables:

  • Give three indicators on using the equations sheet to study for the AP physics (C) examinations.
  • Give three indicators on using the equations sheet during the AP tests.
  • Part by part, explain how to use the AP physics (C) equation sheet.

Because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, AP examinations will now be conducted in three sessions between May and June. The dates of your examinations and whether they will be online or offline will be determined by your school.

In this article, we’ll also do the following things to aid you in learning the ins and outs of the AP Physics C reference tables:  

  • Provide section-by-section instructions on how to use the AP Physics C equation sheet.  
  • Give three-pointers for using the equations sheet to get ready for the AP Physics C tests.  
  • Please offer three hints for utilizing the equations sheet on the AP tests. 

The AP Physics (C) Examination

There are two AP physics (C) examinations:
● The one focusing on mechanics
● The other focuses on magnetism and electricity.

Both AP physics (C) tests examine students’ applications of scientific processes related to the great notions of change, fields, force interactions, and conservation. The courses of AP physics (C) put students to the exam on the following topics:

Magnetism and ElectricityMechanics
Electric CircuitsKinematics
Conductors, Dielectrics, Capacitors,Gravitation
ElectrostaticsEnergy, Work, and Power
Magnetic FieldsSystems of Linear Momentum and Particles
Newton’s Laws of Motion

Both AP physics (C) tests are 1 hr and 30 mins. It includes one free answer section and one multiple-choice question. The MCQ portion consists of 35 questions on both tests and lasts 45 mins. The free-answer part consists of three questions on both AP physics (C) tests. It lasts for 45 minutes. The tests’ free answer and multiple-choice parts each account for half of the total score. The great news is that the AP physics (C) magnetism and electricity equation sheet and the AP physics (C) mechanics equation sheet are identical. Therefore, you won’t have to study from two different papers.

The AP Physics Sheet of Equations 

The AP Physics (C) formula sheet is included in the exam booklet for all AP physics (C) exam participants. The equations sheet for each examination is the same. The equations sheet provided during the exam is not a complete table of physics equations. It contains equations mostly used in constants, physics, conversion factors, values of mostly used functions, symbols, and prefixes.


How to Use the Equation Sheet Formulas

The AP physics (C) formula sheet has five sections:

  • Prefixes
  • Equations
  • Unit symbols
  • Constants and conversion factors
  • Values of trigonometric functions for typical angles

The formula sheet’s equations portion is the longest. It is separated into subsections based on a formula. The subsections of the information sheet’s equations include electricity and magnetism, mechanics, geometry and trigonometry, and calculus. Each area of the formula sheet can also be utilized for various purposes on the test.


Conversion Factors and Constants

The conversion and constant factors on the AP physics (C) formula sheet will come in handy while performing different calculations on the AP test. These values, often known as “universal constants” or “physical constants,” are notable for having a consistent value in nature regardless of the situation.
The constants included on the formula sheet are as follows:

  • Mass of proton
  • Vacuum permittivity
  • Coulomb’s law constant
  • Avogadro’s number
  • Universal gas constant
  • Mass of neutron
  • Mass of electron
  • Boltzmann’s constant
  • Electron charge magnitude
  • Universal gravitational constant
  • Acceleration due to gravity at Earth’s surface
  • One electron volt
  • Speed of light
  • One unified atomic mass unit
  • Planck’s constant
  • Vacuum permeability
  • Magnetic constant
  • One atmosphere pressure

Some constants have no units, but those that do may need to be transformed to and represented in other units on the test. On the test, conversion factors will come into use. The conversion factors on the sheet can change constants from one part to another by dividing or multiplying them.


Conversion Factors and Constants

Trigonometric functions, unit symbols, and Prefixes for Common Angles You will benefit from using both the table of unit symbols and the table of prefixes when taking the AP Physics C exam. When you respond to questions on the exam, you must combine a prefix with the word for a certain unit to describe a number or measurement, such as kilo with grams or giga with watts (the unit). The table of prefixes on the formula sheet can help you recall the value (in tens of thousands!) of a certain prefix if you can’t. 



The symbols for each prefix are also provided in the table of prefixes, which can be used in conjunction with the proper sign for a unit when responding to exam questions. It is acceptable to use either milliseconds or ms and gigahertz or GHz when citing a value, for instance. 

The prefixes table also provides each prefix’s factor or scientific notation. These show up as 10 with an exponent, like 109 or 1012. On the AP Physics C exam, you can anticipate using scientific notation to communicate the largest and smallest measurements. 

The trigonometric functions for common angles are provided in the final part on the first page of the equations sheet. These will be useful for AP exam problems in geometry, trigonometry, and calculus. You can use the table to quickly reference the values of sin, cos, and tan at various angles while you go through problems on the AP Physics C exam. 


 The majority of the formula sheet you’ll be given during the AP Physics C examinations contains standard physics equations. The three categories into which these equations are divided are mechanics, electricity and magnetism, and geometry and trigonometry. 

To aid in remembering what each symbol in a particular equation means, a symbols key is included in each section of equations. 

Equations for Electricity and Magnetism

The formula sheet’s following table contains 29 typical electrical and magnetism equations. During the test, these equations can be utilized to determine, define, describe, and compute the following:

  • Capacitance and Capacitors
  • Resistance, equivalent resistance, and the definition of power or the rate of heat loss through a resistor
  • Electric fields and features of electric fields
  • The potential difference, potential due to multiple point charges, and electrostatic potential energy
  • The magnitude of the electrostatic force
  • Currents and current density
  • Magnetic fields, magnetic force, and magnetic flux

Equations in Mechanics

The AP Physics (C) equation sheet contains 31 widely utilized mechanics equations. On the test, these equations can be used to define, describe, calculate, and determine the following:

  • Kinematic relationships and angular kinematic relationships
  • Potential energy, potential energy for a spring object, and gravitational potential energy
  • Power
  • Momentum, angular momentum for a rotating object, total speed, and momentum for a single thing moving with some velocity
  • Impulse
  • Force the work done on an object by force, frictional force, and gravitational force
  • Kinetic energy and kinetic energy in a rotating object,
  • Torque
  • Moment of inertia
  • Simple harmonic motion

Advacnced placement physics equation

Electricity and Magnetism Equations 

There are 29 common equations for electricity and magnetism in the following table on the formula sheet. During the exam, the following can be calculated, identified, defined, and determined using these equations: 

  • The strength of the electrostatic field 
  • Electric fields and their characteristics 
  • Electrostatic potential energy, potential differential, and potential resulting from numerous point charges 
  • Batteries and capacitance 
  •  The definition of power or the rate of heat loss through a resistor, equivalent resistance, and resistance 
  •  Flows of current and their density 
  •  magnetic fields, magnetic flux, and magnetic force 

Trigonometric and Geometric Functions

Finally, the equations sheet’s table of 14 trigonometric and geometric functions may be utilized to compute the following for the AP physics (C) exam:

  • Area of a triangle
  • Area, circumference, and arc length of a circle
  • Area of the rectangle
  • Volume and surface area of a sphere
  • The volume of a rectangular solid
  • Volume and surface area of a cylinder
  • Formulas for determining the value of the angles of a right triangle

Formulas Related to Laws

The section on electricity and magnetism also includes formulae for the following laws:

  • Law of Ohm
  • Law of Ampere
  • Law of Coulomb
  • Law of Gauss
  • Law of Biot-Savart
  • Law of Faraday
Common Angle Unit Symbols, Prefixes, and Trigonometric Functions

The table of unit symbols and prefixes will work together to help you prepare for the AP physics (C) exam. When answering test questions, a prefix is coupled with the term for a certain unit to describe a number or measurement, such as Giga (prefix) and watts (units) or kilo (prefix) and grams (units). If you cannot recall the value of a certain prefix, the formula page might assist you with the table given.

The table of prefixes also includes the symbol for each prefix, which may be coupled with the right unit sign for answering test questions. For example, it is permissible to state a value in gigahertz (GHz) or milliseconds (ms). Finally, the table of prefixes includes the factor, or scientific notation, for each prefix. These are represented by the number 10 plus an exponent, 1012 or 109. You may anticipate using scientific notation to represent the smallest and largest measurements on the AP physics (C) test.

The trigonometric functions for common angles are provided in the final section on the first page of the equations sheet. These will be useful for the problems of AP trigonometry, geometry, and calculus. The table provides the values of cos, sin, and tan at various degrees, which you may use as a fast reference when doing problems on the AP physics (C) exam.

3 Strategies for Studying with the AP Physics C Formula Sheet 

Prior to the test, the College Board makes the AP Physics C equations sheet available online, so it could be worthwhile to review it. Here are three suggestions for how to study effectively with the equations sheet! 

Tip 1: Exercise conversions On the AP exam, you will have more time to examine your work and make sure your answers are accurate the faster you can complete tasks correctly. Making conversions without ever consulting the formula sheet during the exam is possible if you use the equations page to practice completing frequent conversions as you study for the test. Additionally, every second you conserve counts because the AP Physics C test time is limited. 

Tip 2: Pick Particular Practice Questions – It’s generally a good idea to practice with particular equations that appear in the AP Physics C reference tables before the test if you are aware that you have trouble recalling or applying them correctly. The equations listed on the formula sheet will be used throughout the exam, so reviewing the ones you find challenging will help you make better use of your time. 

Tip 3: Recall SymbolsEven though there are over 90 equations provided in the AP Physics C reference tables, you probably won’t have trouble remembering what each symbol denotes. There is a symbols key included in each of the tables of equations on the equations sheet that explains what each symbol in an equation means. You can save time on the test by interpreting formulae, variables, and constants given in exam questions without having to consult the equations page by memorizing the meanings of all the symbols. 



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