Physics 2111

Solving Physics Problems I

Fall 2011

Monday 16:00-16:50 MWAH 249

Instructor: Alec Habig

Office: MWAH 374

Office Hours:9:00-10:00M, 13:00-14:00M, 14:00-15:00W,

10:00-11:00Th, 9:00-10:00F

Telephone: 726-7214


(or by appointment)

Prerequisites: Concurrent registration in PHYS 2011, Completion of Calculus I (MATH 1296 or 1596).

Text: Halliday, Resnick, & Walker,

Fundamentals of Physics (9th ed.)

Additional readings or assignments from other texts or the web might be assigned over the course of the semester, but arrangements will be made so you do not have to buy more books. This one is expensive enough.

Course Objectives: This course is a companion to Physics 2011, and provides additional practice in applying physical principles to problems in mechanics and thermodynamics in a “recitation” or “discussion” style small-group setting. Watching someone else work through problems, either in person or by reading examples, is not sufficient to learn the material. The only way to do so is through lots of practice. Working in small groups and helping your peers understand the parts which you have figured out is also very helpful to the learning process.

Grading: This course is graded S/N only. Course grades will be based on in-class performance and assigned

problems. The preliminary grading scheme listed here is subject to revision. In-class scores: attendance=1, active participation=2, excused absence (for illness, emergency, university-mandated activity)=0, un-excused absence=-1. Homework scale: excellent=5, fair=3, inadequate=1. (An excellent solution is correct and conforms to the homework guidelines in the Phys 2011 syllabus.) A total of 65 points accumulated over the semester ensures an S for the course.

While you may discuss problems with others in the class (in fact, doing so is a great way to learn, as mentioned above), the work you submit must be your own in the sense that you can explain and defend it when asked. Turning in work simply copied from another or based on solution manuals or other comparable resources constitutes cheating and is subject to penalties (including a failing grade in the course) described in the UMD academic integrity policy.

Tests: This class does not have tests or finals separately from those of the Physics 2011 parent class.

Class Participation: Attendance and active participation in class will contribute to your grade. This includes both working out problems in class and contributing to class discussion.

Note on disabilities: Individuals who have any disability, either permanent or temporary, which might affect their ability to perform in this class are encouraged to inform the instructor at the start of the semester. Adaptation of methods, materials, or testing may be made as possible to provide for equitable participation.

Standard UMD academic policies: are in force and described online at