Syllabus for Physics 104: Elementary Physics II, Spring '99

Basic information:

Class hours and location: 10:00-10.50 am, MWF in Wright 103.
Textbook: The required textbook for this class is the same as in PHYS103, Eugene Hecht's PHYSICS: Algebra/Trig, 2nd edition. I encourage you to look at other textbooks which may have clearer explanations of the same information.
Instructor, lecture: Ms. Yumi Ijiri
Wright 210
Phone: 775-6484
Email: yumi.ijiri@oberlin.edu
http://www.oberlin.edu/~yijiri
Instructor, laboratory: Ms. Melinda Keller
Wright 105
Phone: 775-8339
Email: melinda.keller@oberlin.edu
Office hours: Tues: 11-11:50, Wed: 1:30-2:20, and by appointment. These hours will likely be adjusted after the first class, to accommodate the most number of students.
Extra sessions: Tues. 7-8 pm in Wright 124, Wed. 2:30-3:20 pm in Wright 124. These sessions are optional, a chance to discuss specific topics or problems as well as to meet up with other members of the class.
Evaluation: Grading will be based on the following, which is primarily a reflection of your written work.
Final Exam (date set by Registrar) 25%
In-class exam #2 (Apr. 21) 20%
In-class exam #1 (Mar. 10) 15%
Laboratory 20%
Problem sets 15%
Questions and class participation 5%

Detailed description:

Objectives: This course serves as a continuation of PHYS 103-Elementary Physics I. As in PHYS 103, the aim of this course is to help you understand some of the essential physical concepts used to describe the world around us. The emphasis is again on developing problem solving skills as opposed to memorizing facts and equations. The main focus is on electricity and magnetism, which we will study for the first 7-8 weeks. While electricity and magnetism can be more abstract than mechanics, throughout this course we will try to emphasize physical insight over the mathematics. The latter half of the course will be devoted to a series of topics related to more modern physics--including Einstein's theory of special relativity, origins of quantum mechanics, and issues in nuclear physics, particularly as related to the life sciences.

Course design: In order to achieve these objectives, the course stresses to a large degree the ability to solve problems-in the context of lectures, problem sets, laboratory classes, and exams.

-questions and class participation: Throughout the course, I will be assigning questions in advance of lecture in order to help you keep on top of the material. The questions will be available on the web as well as outside my office. The questions are designed to focus your attention on the concepts at hand and to help guide the class presentation. The questions will be graded solely on the basis of perceived effort--therefore you should work alone on these and email or hand in what represents your best response.

-problem sets: Homework assignments will be made on each Monday, with your solutions to be handed in the following Monday at the beginning of class. Late homework will not be accepted without specific, advance (at least 24 hr.) permission from the instructor (and only under exceptional circumstances). The homework will be graded on a 1 to 5 scale (1, very little correct; 2, a few things; 3, about half; 4 mostly correct; 5, nearly everything correct). I encourage you to work with other students on the problem sets, particularly after you have made a first attempt. However, the solutions you hand in should represent your own understanding of the material-make sure it is clear how you proceeded from one step to the next. Please indicate any help or sources you may have used.

-laboratory: The laboratory experiments for this class are designed to illustrate and complement the discussion in lecture. Laboratories will be graded on a satisfactory/not satisfactory basis, with an opportunity to make up experiments performed unsatisfactorily the first time. You should already have registered for a laboratory section for this course that will meet in Room 123 from 1:30 to 4:30 pm on Monday, Tuesday, or Friday afternoon, starting on Friday, February 12. The other sections will meet for the first time on February 15 or 17. You will receive a laboratory manual at your first laboratory meeting. Prior to the lab first meeting, you should procure a laboratory notebook and bring it with you to lab.

-exams: There will be three exams for this class--two in-class 50 min tests (on Wednesday March 10th and WednesdayApril 21st) and the final 2 hr exam (date determined by the Registrar). The exams will be closed book and emphasize problems of the sort discussed in class and in the problem sets. At least one question will try to draw on your experiences in lab.

Course outline: Below is a tentative list of the topics and schedule for this course.

Dates: Topics Chap. in Hecht
Feb. 8,10,12 Electrostatics 15
Feb. 15,17,19 Electrostatic potential, capacitors 16
Feb. 22,24,26 Current, voltage, resistance 17
Mar. 1,3,5 DC circuits 18
Mar. 8,10,12 Review/EXAM/Magnets 19
Mar. 15,17,19 Magnetism/EMF 19/20
SPRING BREAK SPRING BREAK
Mar.29,31 Apr. 2 RL circuits/AC circuits 20/21
Apr. 5,7,9 AC circuits/Special relativity 21/26
Apr. 12,14,16 (MCAT 17) Special relativity/Origins of mod. phys. 26/27
Apr. 19,21,23 Review/EXAM/Modern phys. cont. 27
Apr. 21,28,30 Quantum mechanics 28/29
May 3,5,7 Q. mechanics/Nuclear physics 29/30
May 10,12,14 Nuclear physics/review 30