May 25, 2024  
2021-2022 Undergraduate Academic Catalog 
2021-2022 Undergraduate Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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PH 130 - Survey of Physics

3 lecture hours 2 lab hours 4 credits
Course Description
This course is intended to provide students in nontechnical fields with the fundamentals of physics. Topics include mechanics, energy, fluids, thermodynamics, optics, electricity and magnetism, and nuclear physics. Laboratory experiments complement the lecture material and provide work on report writing skills. Not for credit for students who have credit in PH 2011 , PH 2011A , PH 2010, PH 2010A, PH 110, PH 113  or PT 110. (prereq: two years of high school mathematics) (coreq: MA 127 )
Course Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  • Define and use displacement, velocity, and acceleration in one dimension as well as understand the graphical relationship between them
  • List, explain, and use Newton’s three laws in one dimension
  • Define work, power, kinetic energy, and potential energy and apply them to conservation of energy
  • Know the factors that are essential to calculate the heat necessary to change the temperature or state of a material
  • State and discuss the three heat transfer mechanisms
  • State and use Archimedes’ Principle, Pascal’s Principle and Bernouilli’s Principle
  • State and use Coulomb’s Law and Ohm’s Law
  • State and use the law of reflection and refraction as well as use the object-image formula for thin lenses and mirrors
  • Know the basic parts of the eye and the function of each
  • Explain radioactivity, half life, and state the properties of alpha, beta, and gamma radiation
  • Use graphical analysis to interpret data
  • Design, conduct and analyze an experiment to determine an unknown temperature with limited means

Prerequisites by Topic
  • None

Course Topics
  • One-dimensional kinematics (4 classes)
  • One-dimensional mechanics (4 classes)
  • Energy (3 classes)
  • Thermodynamics (3 classes)
  • Fluid dynamics (2 classes)
  • Coulomb’s Law and simple circuits (5 classes)
  • Optics (6 classes)
  • Modern physics (3 classes)

Laboratory Topics
  • One-dimensional motion
  • Newton’s Second Law
  • Conservation of mechanical energy
  • Oscillatory motion
  • Specific heat and heat of fusion
  • Problem solving, measuring temperature with limited means
  • Resistors and Ohm’s Law
  • Mirrors or lenses
  • Grating spectrometer
  • Half-life determination

Ruth Schwartz

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