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I cannot wrap my head around how can you not have a wrong answer in physics. It's not philosophy that we are talking about...

How can I improve my question to open it again?

The question: Can 0 acceleration be termed as constant acceleration?

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    $\begingroup$ You've already edited your question, and I think that's enough. $\endgroup$
    – ACB
    Aug 7 at 2:56
  • $\begingroup$ hey! I saw your answer on the question as well.I really do appreciate your cooperation $\endgroup$ Aug 7 at 3:02
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    $\begingroup$ Your question currently has an active reopen review. $\endgroup$
    – rob Mod
    Aug 7 at 7:31
  • $\begingroup$ Feynman disliked phylosophy. $\endgroup$
    – peterh
    Aug 16 at 21:36
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While I do not speak on behalf of the other close voters, the facts are clear:

  • If the velocity is constant, the acceleration is zero.
  • If a quantity is constant, it does not depend on time (in this context).

Zero is clearly a constant, and a constant can be zero. Therefore, constant acceleration comprises two cases:

  1. Uniformly-changing velocity, which means that acceleration is non-zero but constant.
  2. Constant velocity, which means that acceleration is zero.

Your question is the second case which objectively has both constant velocity and acceleration. The facts end here.

The rest becomes opinion-based because we are only allowed to pick one "correct" option. I see at least three issues here:

  1. This boils down to a matter of usefulness. I'm guessing that it's more useful to say "constant velocity" than "constant acceleration", because the former gives more information about the motion of the object than the latter. But that doesn't make the latter any less correct.
  2. If option (d) is correct, then so are (a) and (b).
  3. The velocity and acceleration are constant. If we take into account the usage of the word "may", it could also be argued that none of them are correct because it suggests that there is a non-zero chance for the velocity and acceleration to not be constant, which is wrong.

Therefore, determining which option is "correct" is about guessing the intention/wording of the question setter rather than objectivity, which is why I voted to close.

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  • $\begingroup$ okay Thanks for your explanation! $\endgroup$ Aug 7 at 16:56
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    $\begingroup$ I do not understand how your last paragraph argues for closing the question as opinion-based. Your argument is that the question given by the teacher is opinion-based - not that the question asked here on Physics SE is opinion-based. Your entire answer here makes it clear that there is no doubt from a physics point-of-view about what the answer is. $\endgroup$
    – Steeven
    Aug 13 at 8:39
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I fully agree that this question should not have been closed and should be reopened.

A teacher has asked an ambiguous and opinion-based multiple-choice question to a student followed by a wrong or poorly worded reasoning. The understandably confused student then asks on Physics SE what is right.

From a physics point-of-view the answer to this is very clear. As the answer from Vincent clarifies here in the meta thread, as well as my own and other answers to the question on the main site, there is no doubt that a non-changing value of zero indeed should be considered constant in physics contexts. There is no doubt that the teacher has been unclear or incorrect in the given question. The answer to this is not opinion-based.

It is not unusual that students in schools and educational institutions come to SE to ask questions about unclear and confusing content from their teachers. This question is perfectly fine for this site, imo.

I vote to reopen this question and frankly do not understand the argument for closing or keeping it closed. At the moment of writing, there are 4 votes out of necessary 5 to reopen the question.

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    $\begingroup$ The OP asks "I am providing the question that started this whole discussion and what I believe to be the answer. Speculations on solution would really be appreciated" which is debating which is the "correct" option. This is opinion-based which I clearly explained above. The facts behind the question are undisputed - a point which I never contested. $\endgroup$ Aug 13 at 9:28
  • $\begingroup$ @VincentThacker The OP did the right thing. They gave a conceptual question, and then put in the exercise for context. However, the exercise is not the point of the question. It's the objective conceptual question of "is 0 acceleration that does not change a constant acceleration?" $\endgroup$ Aug 13 at 9:31
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    $\begingroup$ @BioPhysicist Then the question should have been phrased as such. The way it is asked in the body clearly contains elements of finding the correct option rather than the objective question of "Is 0 a constant?". In fact, it was unnecessary to include the original question in the body in the first place. $\endgroup$ Aug 13 at 9:37
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    $\begingroup$ @VincentThacker This is a bit too literal a reading of the question, imo. The phrasing may be as you say, but the purpose of the question is quite obvious to me: the OP's wish is to figure out why or whether his own understanding is wrong. It is not unusual for students to doubt their own thoughts - to trust that one of the given options must be the correct one - when the teacher claims so. Thus his way of phrasing the question is understandably a bit different from his actual purpose with the question, namely to clear out who is right and what is correct in physics. $\endgroup$
    – Steeven
    Aug 13 at 12:02
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    $\begingroup$ @Steeven I understand where you are coming from. However, I maintain all that I have previously said here. Either way, the question has been reopened and there isn't much purpose in continuing this discussion. $\endgroup$ Aug 13 at 12:30
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As written, the question is not an ideal fit for the site. The complete answer to the question in the title of the OP is simply “Yes” but the OP is suggests that “ Speculations on solution would really be appreciated.”

It is clear from the answers that these answers are primarily opinion-based or at least depend on the interpretation of the statement by the instructor.

As a result, the question should be closed as either it needs focus to distinguish between the speculations and the actual answer, either it is opinion-based, or either it is unclear as it depends on the state of mind of the instructor.

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