Course Information

PHYSICS DEPARTMENT



Course: SP211
Title: GENERAL PHYSICS I
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: The first of a two course sequence emphasizing the fundamental principles of classical physics and introduce a variety of applications. Topics include mechanics, electricity, magnetism, wave motion, fluids, sound and light. Lectures, recitations, hands-on laboratories, and large-scale demonstration lectures are employed.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: Chemistry II (SC112 or SC151); Coreq: Calculus III (SM221 or SM223 or SM251) or approval of department chair.
Course: SP212
Title: GENERAL PHYSICS II
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: Continuation of SP211. See SP211 description for topics.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014, Summer 2014-2015, Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: Physics I (SP211 or SP221) or approval of department chair.
Course: SP221
Title: PHYSICAL MECHANICS I
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: A first course in classical mechanics for physics majors. Newtons laws are applied to particles and systems of particles. Energy and momentum methods are developed. Applications include simple, damped, and driven harmonic motion as well as gravitation and orbital motion.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Coreq: Prereq: Chemistry II (SC112 or SC151); Coreq: SM221 or approval of department chair.
Course: SP222
Title: ELECTRICITY AND MAGNETISM I
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: A first course in electricity and magnetism for physics majors, with an emphasis on the concepts of fields and potential. The course culminates in the formulation of Maxwell's equations.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP221 or SP211.
Course: SP226
Title: HEAT, SOUND AND LIGHT
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: A first course on the basic concepts of thermodynamics, acoustics, and optics for physics majors. Topics include heat engines, refrigerators, cosmology, the Doppler effect, beats, shock waves, fluids, lenses, telescopes, polarization, interference and diffraction.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP211 or SP221.
Course: SP301
Title: MODERN PHYSICS
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: An introduction to the theories of relativity and quantum mechanics. Topics include relativistic mechanics, blackbody radiation, wave-particle duality, the Bohr theory, quantum phenomena, nuclear decay and nuclear reactions.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SP212 or SP226.
Course: SP310
Title: ASTRONOMY
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: The fundamentals of astronomy as a physical science, surveying the Universe from the solar system through stellar, galactic and extragalactic astronomy and cosmology.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014, Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SP211 and SP212 or SP221, SP222 and SP226 or approval of director of the astrophysics track.
Course: SP324
Title: APPLIED QUANTUM MECHANICS
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: Applications of quantum mechanics to physical systems. Topics covered are quantum statistics, multi-electron atoms, molecules, properties of solids, superconductivity, nuclear models and reactions, and elementary particles. Modern physics investigations are performed in the laboratory.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP351; Coreq: SP352.
Course: SP327
Title: TWENTIETH CENTURY PHYSICS
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: A study of the development of physics in the twentieth century, with particular attention given to relativity theory, quantum theory, and atomic physics.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SP222 and SP226 or approval of department chair.
Course: SP333
Title: PHYSICAL MECHANICS II
Credits: 4-0-4
Description: An intermediate course in physical mechanics for physics majors. Newtonian, Hamiltonian, and Lagrangian mechanics with special emphasis on the central force problem and noninertial reference frames.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: (SP221 or SP211) and SM212.
Course: SP342
Title: ELECTRICITY AND MAGNETISM II
Credits: 4-0-4
Description: An intermediate course in electromagnetic theory for physics majors. Maxwell's equations are formulated in the notation of vector analysis and applied to various situations.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP351 or SM311.
Course: SP350
Title: THE PHYSICS OF MOTORSPORTS
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: The Physics of Motorsports is an elective course open to all majors. Students will apply general physics and calculus to the technical aspects of Motorsports with a focus on parameters that affect performance. For example, real world torque data will be used to estimate accelerations as well as 0-to-60 mph and quarter-mile times. Students will study authentic road course data and compare them to the results of tire and suspension modeling and explore the physics of high performance driving. One day per week is devoted to student presentations on topics of interest. The course will culminate in group projects and presentations.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP211.
Course: SP351
Title: PROBLEM SOLVING METHODS I
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: Problem Solving Methods for Physics I. A course in the techniques of mathematics for physics with special emphasis on applications for intermediate mechanics. The course includes a detailed examination of coordinate systems; applied integration, differential equations and Fourier series; linear algebra, introduction to vector spaces; vector calculus; and additional topics chosen from geometry, calculus of variations and special applications in physics.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SM212; Coreq: SP212 or SP222.
Course: SP352
Title: PROBLEM SOLVING METHODS II
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: Problem Solving Methods for Physics II. A course in the techniques of mathematics for general physics with special emphasis on applications for electromagnetism and quantum mechanics. The course includes applications of vector calculus, further applications of linear vector spaces, boundary value problems, techniques for quantum mechanics, and additional topics chosen from among introductory numerical methods, fundamentals of statistics and special applications in physics.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP351.
Course: SP411
Title: UNDERWATER ACOUSTICS AND SONAR
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: A fundamental study of sound propagation in the ocean environment as it relates to the design and operation of sonar. Topics include wave mechanics, detection theory, Fourier analysis, ray tracing, waveguides, and scattering.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014, Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SP212 or SP226.
Course: SP425
Title: ADVANCED QUANTUM THEORY
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: Advanced techniques for describing quantum systems. Topics covered are quantum mechanics formalism, techniques for solving the Schroedinger equation, perturbation theory, the real hydrogen atom, and angular momentum algebra. The laboratory focuses on building experimental skills through advanced experiments.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SP324 and SP352.
Course: SP434
Title: NUCLEAR PHYSICS
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: A study of the basic static and dynamic properties of the nucleus and of the interaction of particles and radiation with matter. Emphasis on the experimental techniques. Where appropriate, quantum mechanical interpretations of the phenomena are given.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP324.
Course: SP436
Title: ACOUSTICS
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: An introduction to modern acoustics. Topics include vibration and normal modes; coupled oscillators; discrete Fourier transforms; radiation, transmission and detection of sound waves; electroacoustics; pyschoacoustics, architectural acoustics, musical acoustics and Sonar.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: (SP212 or SP226) and SM212.
Course: SP438
Title: OPTICS
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: An introduction to modern optics. Topics include polarization, interference, coherence, diffraction, Fourier transforms, holography, optics of solids and basic laser physics.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SP342.
Course: SP442
Title: SOLID STATE PHYSICS
Credits: 3-2-4
Description: An introduction to the physics of condensed matter. Topics include crystalline and noncrystalline solids, band theory, semiconductors, magnetism, and superconductivity.
Offered: Spring
Requisites: Prereq: SP324 or approval of department chair.
Course: SP444
Title: THERMAL PHYSICS
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: A presentation of topics in thermal properties of matter and radiation as derived from the laws of quantum mechanics and statistics.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP324.
Course: SP445
Title: ASTROPHYSICS I
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: A study of the physics of astronomical objects such as stars and galaxies.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SM212 and (SP301 OR SP324) and (SP310 or approval of the director of astrophysics track).
Course: SP446
Title: ASTROPHYSICS II
Credits: 3-0-3
Description: This course is a continuation of SP445 (Astrophysics I). It is designed for the first-class astrophysics-track. Students explore the current understanding of extragalactic astrophysics and cosmology. In particular, they study the structure and dynamics of various galactic types, the large-scale structure of the universe and the origin and fate of the universe itself.
Offered: Spring 2013-2014
Requisites: Prereq: SP445.
Course: SP447
Title: OBSERVATIONAL ASTROPHYSICS
Credits: 2-2-3
Description: This laboratory course is designed to give students hands-on experience with the techniques of modern astrophysical observation, data analysis and interpretation. Observations are made with instruments ranging from binoculars to optical and radio telescopes, and detectors ranging from the human eye and cameras to state-of-the-art charge coupled devices. These data, as well as observations available on-line, are reduced with modern analysis methods, with particular emphasis on image processing. A variety of projects explore the major observational fields of astrometry, photometry, spectroscopy and imaging, and how they provide our fundamental knowledge about the Universe.
Offered: Fall 2014-2015
Requisites: Prereq: SP310.