Principles of Physics II

Spring 2003

PHYsics 1161C (lecture)

Room 2153

1100 - 1150 M W F

Doug Davis

Room 1114

Office Hours: 0900 M W F

Welcome Back! I hope you had a good Christmas break.

Notes & Calendar

Physics includes everything. In PHY 1150 (PHY 1151/1152), we began with Mechanics, the part of Physics that describes and explains Motion, we studied Heat and Thermodynamics, and finished with an extension of Mechanics, Wave Motion and Sound.

In PHY 1160 (PHY 1161/1162) we will start with Electricity and Magnetism. What is different between the electricity that powers a flashlight and the electricity in high voltage transmission lines? How does an electric motor work? We will continue the course by looking at Light and Optics. Why do some of us wear glasses? What happens when you focus a camera? How does a magnifying glass work? We will finish the course with a brief overview of Modern Physics -- Special Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, Atomic Physics, and Nuclear Physics. What happens when objects move really fast -- with speeds close to that of light? What does the nature of the energy of an atom have to do with the rosy light given off by sodium vapor lights or the bluish light of mercury vapor lights?

"A word to the wise is sufficient." Throughout PHY 1150 we talked about phenomena or situations with which you were already somewhat familiar. You have seen billiard balls collide. You have some intuition concerning energy and power. You have seen waves. You have listened to music. We added missing details and tried to pull all those things together. But few of us have the same background or experience with Electricity and Magnetism. While you use E&M on a daily basis, you don't see it or interact with it as you do with the Mechanics of bicycles, rollerblades, cars, airplanes, or golf balls. Therefore, for most of us, E&M is more difficult to understand that Mechanics was. Our coverage of Modern Physics will be far less detailed than our coverage of E&M. Therefore, many people find the section on E&M to be the most difficult material in the two semester sequence. Please(!) be aware of this and do not fall behind. Electric fields are not trivial! DC Circuits are not trivial! Please do not wait until the exam to determine if you understand the material. I can not emphasize the homework too much. I am not collecting the homework. I will discuss it in class as you have questions. The homework solutions are posted on the web. Waiting and watching me go over the homework will make the exams impossible! The exams really ought to be easy. Make the exams easy by struggling with the homework and asking questions early. This is esp'ly true concerning E&M. Life gets complicated. Make it as easy on yourself as you can.

Click here for tentative General Schedule



You should already have a copy of the textbook, College Physics, vol 2. Please read the material before it is discussed in class. Saving a textbook as a last resort before an exam or before looking at homework problems makes the course more difficult than it needs to be. Make life easy for yourself; read the textbook. Take a few class notes over this familiar material. Work all the assigned problems&emdash;and a few more. Then relax for the exams will be easy; there should be no surprises on the exams.

The textbook is certainly the most complete resource associated with the course. I think it is your most useful resource! Use it! Always!





There will be four "hour exams". Tentative dates for these exams are listed with the homework assignments. The lowest score will be omitted; there are no make-ups for missed hour exams.

The final exam is comprehensive; it provides a good way to review and pull all the ideas together at the end of the semester. The final exam will count as two hour exams. That means the final exam is worth one-third of your grade.

The fourth hour exam will be during the week before finals so half of your grade is determined during that last week or so of the semester. Please don't wait until that last week or so to prepare for those exams. Learn, study, question, work, prepare right from the start and continuously throughout the semester. The exams will not be tricky. The exams will contain no surprises. The exams should be dull. The exams should contain no surprises.



Homework is vital in Physics!!!! I can not stress that too much. Physics is like scuba diving -- it requires participation and practice and learning from your own errors. You may be able to understand the Civil War by listening to lectures. But you can not successfully learn to scuba dive only by listening to lecture -- you have to get wet! Physics, too, requires that you "get wet", that you get your hands messy in the mire of homework problems and laboratory work. There simply is no other way to learn Physics. The exams will not be strikingly different from the homework. Diligence with the homework will make the exams easy but ignoring the homework will make the exams impossible! Struggling with and learning from doing the homework is vital! You must do the homework -- just to survive. Solutions are posted on the world wide web. Homework will not be turned in and graded; this requires great maturity and responsibility on your part.

Click here for HOMEWORK assignments



Your grade for PHY 1161C (lecture) will be determined by the following:

Hour exams        3 @ 100 pts          300 pts
Final exam                             200        
Total                                  500 pts

Homework is vital but it does not count directly in the points that determine your grade. The exams are dull and boring; they are not creative. If you do -- struggle with, understand, actually do -- the homework, the exams will be easy. If you do not do the homework -- if you come to class and watch me do the homework -- then the exams will be killers. Do the

Your grade for PHY 1162C (lab) will be determined independently; PHY1162 is a separate course.

In my opinion, there are two objective methods of grading.

One can determine grades strictly "on a curve" (e. g., 15% will get A's; 20%, B's; 30%, C's; 20%, D's; and 15%, F's).

One can also determine grades strictly by a predetermined number

(e. g., 100 - 91, A

90 - 81,   B
80 - 71,   C

70 - 61, D etc.)

The first method requires a perfect distribution of students. The second requires that the instructor be able to write perfect exams. I have never found either condition met.

Therefore, my grading "system" is some mixture of the two. You may consider the above grading scale a sort of "guaranteed minimum". An 82 will be a B. But a 79 -- or even a 78 -- may also be a B. That is, I will not raise grade requirements but I do reserve the right to lower them.



Internet: Classroom lecture notes, the general course calendar, homework assignments, homework solutions -- everything about this course -- are all available on the internet (or the world wide web). The home page for PHY 1160 (1161/1162) is located at

Please do not use the online course notes as a ready excuse to skip class.

Bulletin Board: From the general course calendar page, there is a link to a Bulletin Board where you can post questions or respond to questions or comments others have posted. Please use this Bulletin Board freely and often.

100 points of your total points for this course are determined by required weekly Bulletin Board Postings. For the first seven weeks, a Bulletin Board Posting is required The weekly deadline is noon on Friday. After mid-term, the postings are no longer required. It is my hope that you will find them useful enough by then that you will continue to make use of them on your own.

Okay, so what is a Bulletin Board Posting anyway? You can ask a question on the Bulletin Board. You can respond to someone else's question on the Bulletin Board. In general, I will try to avoid making quick answers to your Bulletin Board questions so other students can respond. If you need an answer from me quickly, send me an eMail note -- or, better yet, stop by my office and ask me in person.

The Mechanical Universe (TMU) video tapes are available in the Self-Study Materials Center (SSMC) of the library. I hope to show several TMU tapes in class. Other pressures of the course may reduce this. These are excellent tapes made a few years ago at CalTech and include short historical sketches, wonderful computer animations, and scenes that may be difficult or impossible to duplicate in the classroom. They were made for a PBS audience but they also include extensive references to calculus. Don't let the references to "integrals" or "derivatives" frighten you; watch and listen for the ideas and the demonstrations and the conclusions.

Office Hours: Please come see me as the course goes along when questions arise or when you have trouble with the homework.

My "official" office hours are at 0900 on M, W, F. However, please feel free to drop by whenever you like.

Tutors: Sometimes it helps to have the same thing explained by someone else in different words. Physics majors volunteer their time several hours a week to act as tutors. The tutor schedules will be posted in a week or two. Make use of this valuable resource. But come see me, too.

I am in the process of adding some QuickTime movies to my web site. These will be indicated with this QuickTime logo in the corner of a still image. When you click on that image a QuickTime movie will be downloaded and will play. For this to work, your computer must have the QuickTime plug-in installed in your web browser. If you use a computer on campus the connections are fast enough that the QuickTime download should not take very long. If you do this from home, the download time may be long. Please give me feedback concerning this. I need to know if you are using a computer on campus which does not yet have the QT plug-in. I need to know what you think of the QT movies.

You can get your QT plug-in by clicking here.

COPYING someone else's ideas or creative talents is called plagiarism. Presidential candidates have had careers ruined because of plagiarism. Pulitzer prizes have been taken back because of plagiarism. Students have been expelled because of plagiarism. Unauthorized copying of computer programs is also called theft. We have licenses for all the software you will encounter in this course. University policy is that you should not illegally copy computer software. I expect you to abide by that.

Click here for tentative course schedule.

(c) Doug Davis, 2002; all rights reserved