I have several main goals for this course:
- I want to help you improve your quantitative literacy, problem
solving skills, and mathematical confidence.
- I want you to learn several big physics ideas: conservation of
energy, momentum, and angular momentum; and Newton's Laws.
- I want you to gain experience working effectively and solving
problems in groups.
As our primary text we will use the Six Ideas
books by Tom
Moore. I would like to cover all of unit C and about a quarter to
third of unit N.
Important Note: Be sure to get the second edition of
the text. If you're purchasing the book online, be sure to check the
ISBN. This is usually the most reliable way to see what edition of a
book you're getting; each edition has a unique ISBN.
- Thomas A. Moore. Six Ideas that Shaped Physics: Unit C:
Conservation Laws Constrain Interactions, second edition. McGraw
Hill. 2003. ISBN: 0-07-229152-4.
- Thomas A. Moore. Six Ideas that Shaped Physics: Unit N: The Laws
of Physics are Universal, second edition. McGraw Hill. 2003. ISBN:
Your evaluation will be based roughly on the following:
I recommend against grades; I believe they are more likely than not to
interfere with genuine, reflective learning. However, I will assign
grades (for those who so opt) by following the guidelines in the COA
Course Catalog. I do not have any quota of A's, B's, etc.
- Weekly Homework Assignments: 50 percent.
- Mid-Term Exam: 15 percent.
- Final Exam: 20 percent.
- Class and Lab Participation: 15 percent.
Policies, Advice, and Stuff:
- Homework will be due Fridays at the end of the day. More than one
unexcused late homework assignment will result in me mentioning this
in your narrative evaluation and may result in a lowering of your grade.
- You are strongly encouraged to work together on homework. You
can also consult me, class tutors, other faculty, friends,
and family. However, the homework you hand in should represent
your own understanding. This means that if your friends get a
homework problem and you don't understand how they did it,
you shouldn't photocopy their solution and turn it in.
- Exams will be open notes, open book, and (essentially) untimed.
You may not, however, get any help from any humans during the exam.
- I will almost always assign reading for each class. You should
do the reading, and come prepared with some written questions or areas
that you want to discuss. More info about class preparation can be
- More than two missing homework assignments will result in a grade
no higher than a C.
- You'll want a calculator that can handle scientific notation,
trigonometry, and logarithms. There's no need to buy an expensive
- I expect you to attend class and labs.
- Information about labs can be found here.
- I will be sending out class info via email. Thus, it's important
that you check your email.
- Academic misconduct -- cheating, plagarizing, etc. -- is bad. Any cases
of academic misconduct will result in a judicial hearing, as per
pp. 14-15 of the COA handbook. Possible consequences range from
failure of the assignment to expulsion. For more, see the revised statement on academic
integrity passed by the faculty winter term, 1999.
- A more informal description of this course can be found here.
[ Dave ]
[ Physics I ]
[ COA ]
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