West Metro Physics Teams

Description: The Edina Center for Academic Excellence (ECAE), a nonprofit educational organization supporting high-potential students, sponsors the West Metro Physics Team (WMPT). This opportunity is open to top science and math students in grades 8 to 12. In order to appropriately challenge students with different experiences in math and physics, ECAE is offers two physics teams in the West Metro Physics Team program: Physics Team I and Physics Team II.

Physics Team I is algebra-based, with emphasis on teaching basic principles; no prior physics knowledge is necessary. Students are expected to be fluent in algebra, geometry, and trigonometry. The primary goal of Team I is to prepare students to successfully take the AP Physics 1 test; exceptional students will also perform well on the Physics Olympiad.

Physics Team II prepares students to do well on the Physics Olympiad, teaching through problem-solving. Students are expected to be fluent in calculus and to have experience with physics, either through past physics team training or an AP physics class.

Both teams compete in the AAPT / American Institute of Physics Olympiad (F=ma) Contest in January and the Physics Bowl in April. This training program has already produced two United States Physics Team finalists, two gold medalists, two silver medalists, two bronze medalists, one honorable mention, and twenty-three United States Physics Team semi-finalists. WMPT has also produced four Physics Bowl regional winners and a first -place team finish since 2010.

*In addition to the West Metro Physics Team, we also offer the opportunity for any interested students to take the two physics contests without being a member of WMPT if they are unable to take them at their school. We order a set number of test packets, and registration priority is given to WMPT members (exam fee is included with WMPT membership).

The F=ma Contest is a 25-question, 75-minute timed, multiple choice test administered in late January. The test focuses on mechanics, and problems can be solved without the use of calculus. There is a $15 fee for students who that are not members of WMPT. Link to past F=MA Contests

Physics Bowl Contest: is a 40-question, 45-minute timed, multiple-choice test administered in early April. Exam questions are based on topics and concepts covered in a typical high school physics course. To enhance the distribution of awards, Division I is for first-year physics students and Division II is for second-year physics students. There is a $15 fee to students not a member of WMPT.

WMPT members/students are requested to purchase the following books; used copies are encouraged and can by purchased through our Amazon links:  

WMPT Team I:

Physics: Principles with Applications (5th Edition) by Douglas C. Giancoli  (ISBN: 978-0136119715). Purchase resource: Amazon (about $16)



Fundamentals of Physics, Vol. 1 by David Halliday (ISBN: 0471429597). Purchase resource:  Amazon.com (about $10)