Physical and Earth Sciences
Jacksonville State University

 PHYSICS COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

COURSES WITH NO PHYSICS OR MATH PREREQUISITES

327. Elementary Radiation Physics (3).

    This course is intended for any student interested in radiation safety and specifically for students in physics, chemistry, pre-medicine, pre-dentistry, nursing, biology, and archaeology. The course objective is to provided individuals with the knowledge and procedures necessary to minimize exposures to ionizing and non-ionizing radiation and to understand the physiological and environmental effects of radiation. Instruction will include lectures, discussions, demonstration, and laboratory exercises.
339. Special Topics (1)
    This is a modular course about a topic of interest to the non-mathematical, but inquiring, mind.  May not count toward physics major or minor.  Course may be repeated three times for a total of 3 semester hours credit. 
371. Astronomy (4) 
    3 hours lecture/3 hours lab per week.  A survey of the structure and evolution of the universe, from planets to stars and galaxies.  Questions about the nature of science, limits to current knowledge, and the influence of space science will be addressed.  The course culminates in individual in-depth explorations of particular aspects of astronomy.  Excellent for future science teachers and anyone interested in our place in the universe.
INTRODUCTORY PHYSICS COURSES WITH MATH PREREQUISITES

201. College Physics I (3).

    Prerequisites: MS 102, MS 103.
    Corequisites: Physics 211L (Elementary Laboratory Techniques)

    This course is the first half of a two-semester sequence that introduces basic concepts in physics.  Beginning with mechanics and motion, we develop methods for mathematically describing the way objects move and predicting their future movement.  The course proceeds to study wave motion with springs, strings, water, sound and light.  Does not count toward the physics minor.

202. College Physics II (3).
    Prerequisites: Physics 201
    Corequisites: Physics 212L (Elementary Laboratory Techniques)

    The second half of this sequence of courses begins by studying electricity and basic circuits, followed by magnetism.  A section on light including lenses and mirrors follows.  The behavior of light waves such as rainbows and soap bubbles will also be explored.  Finally, topics from quantum mechanics and special relativity are introduced to give students a flavor of the revolutionary nature of these topics in their original scientific setting.  Does not count toward the physics minor.

211. Physics for Scientists and Engineers I (4).
    Prerequisite or corequisite: MS 141
    Corequisites: Physics 211L (Elementary Laboratory Techniques)

    This course is the first of two semesters designed to introduce the basic concepts of physics.  The first semester will concentrate on the area of physics called Newtonian mechanics that is used to work with macroscopic (ordinary-sized) objects.  Beginning with mechanics and motion, we develop methods for mathematically describing the way objects move and predicting their future movement. The course proceeds to study wave motion with springs, strings, water, sound and light. We will take advantage of the power of calculus to depict movement by weaving its structure into our physical laws and theories.    Since the development of both calculus and Newtonian mechanics by Sir Isaac Newton, calculus and physics have been intertwined, and students in this course will see these close connections.  Credit will not be granted for both 201 and 211.

212. Physics for Scientists and Engineers II (4).
    Prerequisite: Physics 211 and MS 142

    Corequisites: Physics 212L (Elementary Laboratory Techniques)

    The second semester of this sequence begins by studying electricity and basic circuits, followed by magnetism.  A section on light including lenses and mirrors follows.  The behavior of light waves such as rainbows and soap bubbles will also be explored.  Finally, topics from quantum mechanics and special relativity are introduced to give students a flavor of the revolutionary nature of these topics in their original scientific setting.  Once again, calculus will be used throughout the course.  Credit will not be granted for both 202 and 212.

211L. Elementary Laboratory Techniques I (1).
    Corequisites: Physics 201 or 211 is required

    Two laboratory hours each week.  Concepts of physics developed in the associated courses will be studied through the use of hands-on activities.  Students will work in groups to explore topics in motion, mechanics, waves and sound.

212L. Elementary Laboratory Techniques II (1).
    Corequisites: Physics 202 or 212.

    Two laboratory hours each week.  Concepts of physics developed in the associated courses will be studied through the use of hands-on activities.  Students will work in groups to explore topics in electricity, magnetism, optics and modern physics.

COURSES FOR WHICH PHYSICS 202 OR 212 ARE PREREQUISITES

342. Optics (3).

    This course looks in detail at various aspects of optics.  Topics may include geometrical and physical optics, spectra, wave and quantum aspects of electromagnetic radiation, refraction, reflection, dispersion, diffraction, interference, and polarization. Occasionally classroom periods are replaced by laboratory work at the discretion of the instructor. 
381. Special Topics (1). 
    This course will explore a topic of current interest in the field of physics.  May be taken up to three times for a total of 3 semester hours. 
383. Special Topics (3). 
    This course will explore a topic of current interest in the field of physics.  May be repeated twice for a total of 6 semester hours.
411. Laboratory Practicum (1).
    One or more laboratory periods per week. For juniors and seniors planning careers in high school, college or university teaching, the use of laboratory equipment in physics instruction will be studied. This course may be repeated for a maximum of four semesters for a total of 4 semester hours. Not for credit toward a major or minor.
COURSES FOR WHICH PHYSICS 211, 211L, 212 AND 212L ARE PREREQUISITES

301. Modern Physics (3).

    Explore the two 20th century revolutions in physics: quantum mechanics and special relativity.  We will study the evidence that led to the acceptance of each of these theories and some of the implications of these theories.  Both quantum mechanics and relativity have become part of the popular culture. This course offers the opportunity to understand their ideas in their original context and see how popular culture's usage differs from scientific usage. 
343. Electromagnetic Fields (3).
    Prerequisites: MS 241

    Electric and magnetic fields will be studied.  What are their origins?  What features of nature affect the nature and strength of the fields?  What are some of their effects?  Maxwell's equations uniting all of electricity and magnetism will be seen in their full glory.

Engineering 361. Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics (3).
    Prerequisites: MS 241 and PHY 211. Heat and work; thermodynamic systems and equations of state; zeroth, first, and second laws of thermodynamics; change of phase; the combined first and second laws; irreversability and availability of energy; mixtures of ideal gasses; psychrometry.
420. Advanced Physics Laboratory (1). 
    Prerequisites: Physics 301

    Contemporary physics topics will be explored in the laboratory using advanced laboratory techniques.  Labs may include the Franck-Hertz experiment, measuring the speed of light and individual projects. May be taken up to three times for a total of three semester hours.  

443. Electrodynamics (3).
    Prerequisites: Physics 343

    Continuing the study begun in Physics 343, changing electromagnetic fields are investigated.  These changing fields form electromagnetic waves in free space and matter that exhibit all of the standard behaviors of waves.  Thus, topics will include reflection and refraction of electromagnetic waves, guided waves and the field of a moving charge.

481. Special Topics (1). 
    This course will explore a topic of current interest in the field of physics.  May be repeated three times for a total of 3 semester hours. 
483. Special Topics (3). 
    This course will explore a topic of current interest in the field of physics.  May be repeated two times for a total of 6 semester hours.
     
491. Quantum Mechanics (3).
    Prerequisites: Physics 301, 343, MS 344.

    This course extends the investigation of quantum mechanics begun in Physics 301 to include the full mathematical development of the theory.  Basic tools including linear operators and matrices will be used to explore physical systems such as a particle in a box, a linear harmonic oscillator, the hydrogen atom and a one-dimensional crystal.


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