F=ma 2024



Take it for fame or take it for fun!

If you are interested in being on the US Physics Team, you must take the F=ma exam.  This year at South, the F=ma contest will be held at only one specified time - Thursday, February 8, 2024 during 2nd and 3rd hours 8:45-10:50am (periods 3 and 4), and the exam will take place in person in room 118 (new science wing, AT Physics room)To register, you must fill out the registration form on this page and give $23 to Mrs. Fortunato by Friday, December 15th. Continue reading for more details if you are still interested.  

What is the F=ma contest?

Each year, the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) and the American Institute of Physics (AIP) sponsor a competition for high school students to represent the United States at the International Physics Olympiad Competition. The mission of the U.S. Physics Team Program is to promote and demonstrate academic excellence through preparation for and participation in the International Physics Olympiad.  

F=ma is the first qualifying exam for the US Physics Team.  The F=ma exam focuses on mechanics, including kinematics, statics, Newton’s laws, momentum and energy, oscillations, orbital mechanics, fluids, and elementary data analysis. All problems can be solved without the use of calculus.  You will qualify for the USAPhO semifinal exam if your F=ma exceeds the cutoff score. 

Students must be either U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents of the United States (green card holders) to participate in the F=ma or USAPhO exam.  

Exam Administration Info

This year, the F=ma exam will be held at South on Thursday, February 8, 2024 during 2nd and 3rd hours 8:45-10:50am (periods 3 and 4), and the exam will take place in person in Room 118 (new science wing, AT Physics Room).  

Registration Details

In order to participate in this year's contest, you must fill out the registration form below and send a check to the school.

2024 F=ma Contest Registration Form

The fee for this year's exam is $23.  This will cover the $15 student registration as well as the $75 school registration fee and $10 processing fee.  I know this is quite a big jump in price since last year because of the dramatic increase in both school registration and per student fees.  

You may pay your registration fee to me (Mrs. Fortunato) in two different ways:

Payment must be made to to Mrs. Fortunato by Friday, December 15th.  I am usually in my classroom 118 throughout the day, but usually not during lunch, and I do not usually stay after school.  Please make sure to hand the money to me in person; do not give it to another teacher to give to me because there is no guarantee that I will get it.  Please also do not put anything in my mailbox - I do not check it, so you will not be registered.  If I do not have your money by Friday, December 15, 2023, you will not be registered, even if you have filled out the form.  I hope to send a confirmation email to all of the people who have registered by Saturday, December 16th, so if you don't receive a confirmation email by that date, please let me know as soon as possible by Sunday, December 17th. 

Exam Practice

Past exams can be found HERE.


If you still have questions, please email me at barbara.fortunato@wwprsd.org.