MYTUTOR SUBJECT ANSWERS

907 views

What's the difference between speed and velocity?

Speed and velocity are both measurements of the rate of travel but their is a subtle difference.

Speed tells us the rate at which an object is moving.

Velocity tells us the rate at which an object is moving in a specific direction. 

Lets examine two simple scenarios:

1. A car moving forward at 5m/s

2. A car moving backward 5m/s

In scenario one the speed of the car is 5m/s and the velocity is also 5m/s.

In scenario two the speed of the car is 5m/s but the velocity is -5m/s.

We see that because the direction of the car is opposite in the second scenario we define its velocity as negative. 

                                                                                                              

More Information:

Speed and velocity are examples of a scalar and a vector respectively.

A scalar is any quantity which has only a magnitude and is not direction dependent.

A vector has both a magnitude and a direction.

Examples of Scalar Quantities: 

           distance, time, energy

Examples of Vector Quantities:

           displacement, acceleration, force

George B. A Level Chemistry tutor, GCSE Science tutor, GCSE Biology t...

2 years ago

Answered by George, a GCSE Science tutor with MyTutor


Still stuck? Get one-to-one help from a personally interviewed subject specialist

88 SUBJECT SPECIALISTS

£18 /hr

Isobel B.

Degree: Theoretical Physics (Masters) - University College London University

Subjects offered:Science, Physics+ 5 more

Science
Physics
Maths
Further Mathematics
Economics
Art
-Personal Statements-

“I am 20 years old and currently studying Theoretical Physics at UCL. I have a lot of experience tutoring and have a passion to help others learn.”

£18 /hr

Emily P.

Degree: Biology (Bachelors) - Bristol University

Subjects offered:Science, Maths+ 2 more

Science
Maths
Chemistry
Biology

“Patient and Passionate Student biology A-Level, Chemistry AS and Maths GCSE and below. Want to share the wonders of biology!”

MyTutor guarantee

£20 /hr

Maymana A.

Degree: Natural Sciences (Masters) - University College London University

Subjects offered:Science, Maths+ 2 more

Science
Maths
Chemistry
Biology

“Approachable Natural Sciences student at UCL, predicted a First. Having already tutored for over four years, I am an enthusiastic science communicator.”

About the author

George B.

Currently unavailable: for regular students

Degree: Chemistry (Masters) - Oxford, Jesus College University

Subjects offered:Science, Physics+ 3 more

Science
Physics
Maths
Chemistry
Biology

“About Me: As a second year chemist at Oxford University I naturally have a love for anything and everything science. Science can be challenging at times however, with the right approach, it can be anengaging and exciting subject. I ho...”

You may also like...

Posts by George

How can aldehydes and ketones be distinguished?

How do mass spectrometers work?

What's the difference between speed and velocity?

Other GCSE Science questions

What are hydrocarbons and why are they so important?

What are atoms?

What is the main difference between Mitosis and Meiosis

How much work is done in moving a charge of 2 C across two points having a potential difference 12 V?

View GCSE Science tutors

We use cookies to improve your site experience. By continuing to use this website, we'll assume that you're OK with this. Dismiss

mtw:mercury1:status:ok