PHYS 1012 AND 1013 in support of Introductory Physics Classes
What can I expect from the supplemental physics course?
Vital to mastering Physics is getting students to perceive the basic underlying principles. (In Physics there are surprisingly very few laws: In Mechanics it’s essentially Newton’s Laws; in Electricity & Magnetism it’s Maxwell’s four equations— though these underlying ideas have enormous power and a multitude of spell-binding ramifications.). To that end, these courses let the student see the inherent simplicity in what often at first strikes them as complex.
In these classes we use a unique approach. To begin with, we solve real world problems— the things one encounters in every day life, from wheels and car engines, to light bulbs and computers and TVs. Often we start with a simple specific example, keep modifying it, making it ever more complex, until we reach the general and underlying concept. The emphasis in the class is to create an environment that’s pleasant and open. It’s a place where students feel free to ask questions and interact without the worry of looking silly.
The course meets weekly on Wednesday evenings. There are handouts, especially sample prelims and finals— solutions not generally available elsewhere. Successful completion of the course (an “S” grade) requires attending a minimum of 8 classes during the semester.
Students over the years have provided feedback from course evaluations and surveys that instructors:
- provide opportunities to practice problem solving
- provide clarification for confusing topics
- provide opportunity for interaction and participation
- review concepts
- provide in-depth discussions
- provide opportunity to practice real world problems
- provide positive environment in which students can keep asking questions
- make sure everyone understands the material
Where can I get more information?