Introduction to Physics Laboratory - 1st year

A laboratory course in elementary physics. The course will include selected experiments in mechanics, heat, light, sound, electricity and magnetism, and modern physics.


By the end of the course, students will be able to:

1. Recognize the methods of laboratory technique and analysis;

2. Recognize the relationship of experimentation to the growth and development of scientific theories;

3. Describe, discuss, and perform simple experiments in mechanics, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, waves and sound, electricity, optics, and modern physics;

4. Interpret the results of simple experiments and demonstrations of physical principles;

5. Prepare a lab report according to accepted norms.


Course topics will include the following:

1. Significant Figures, Averaging, & Measurements

a. Calculation techniques
b. Significant figures
c. Principles of measurement

2. EGraphing and Hooke’s Law

a. Graphing techniques
b. Force equilibrium

3. Motion on an Air Track

a. Kinematics

4. Conservation of Mechanical Energy

a. Mechanics

5. Density

a. Properties of matter

6. Specific Heat

a. Heat transfer

7. Electric Circuits and Ohm’s Law

a. DC electricity

8. Magnetic Fields and Transformers

a. AC electricity

9. Simple Lens System

a. Principles of optics

10. Summary and Review

a. The nucleus

Method of Instruction:

1. Lecture/Demonstration

2. Experimentation

3. Class Discussion

Types of Assignments:

1. Preliminary write up of laboratory experiment

2. Maintenance of laboratory notebook

3. Preparation of laboratory reports

4. Reading assignments in theory related to experiments

5. Quizzes and exams