This is a three-term class. This course focuses on the fundamental ideas of energy and energy conservation in real-life situations. Students are introduced to the concept of energy in its mechanical form as well as in its other forms—electrical, gravitational, elastic, thermal, nuclear, etc.—in order to allow students to see the unity of physical ideas underlying what seem to be dissimilar phenomena. The focus is on classical physics. Although basic algebra is required, emphasis is placed more on understanding the important concepts of physics rather than on mathematical manipulations in problem solving. The main goal of this course is to teach students how to think scientifically. Students are expected to get into the habit of thinking about the physics problems in the world around them. Laboratory exercises are designed to teach students the use of both basic measuring devices and state-of-the-art technology and range from college-level lab experiments to the design of students’ own basic experiments in open-ended assignments. In addition to in-class laboratory exercises, students are assigned informal home experiments and exploration projects to facilitate observation and discovery of physics laws and principles in the world around us.
- Science course