Free Body Diagrams

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This video consists of four sections: a brief refresher on the method for drawing free body diagrams, examples of free body diagrams with an opportunity to practice, examples of situations in which diagrams have been drawn incorrectly (and corrections for them), a final segment that draws connections between free body diagrams and the physical situations they describe.

Learning Objectives

After watching this video students will be able to:

  • Identify errors in free body diagrams and correct them.
  • Recognize free body diagrams as representations of forces, and connect them with real world objects and phenomena.

Funding provided by the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD)

Developed by the Teaching and Learning Laboratory (TLL) at MIT for SUTD

MIT © 2012

Related Resources

Instructor Guide

This resource may not render correctly in a screen reader.Free Body Diagrams Instructor Guide (PDF)

It is highly recommended that the video is paused when prompted so that students are able to attempt the activities on their own and then check their solutions against the video.

During the video, students will:

  • Follow along by creating free body diagrams of their own.
  • Find errors in a set of diagrams presented in the video.

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  • English-US (SRT)