Chemistry & Physics Course Descriptions

PHY 1000 Astronomy of the Solar System (4)

An introduction to modern astronomy with emphasis on the solar system. Topics include observational astronomy, history and development of astronomy, formation of the solar system, and the structure and composition of Sun, planets, asteroids, and comets. This course is intended primarily for non-science majors and satisfies the Area II General Education elective in Natural Science.


PHY 1050 Astronomy of Stars, Galaxies, and the Cosmos (4)

An introduction to modern astronomy with emphasis on the Universe beyond the solar system. Topics include properties and life cycles of stars, supernovae, neutron stars, black holes, quasars, interstellar medium, galaxies, and cosmology. This course is intended primarily for non-science majors and satisfies the Area II General Education elective in Natural Science.


PHY 1100 Physics of Sound and Music (4)

An introduction to the physics of sound and music. Topics include vibrations, waves, fundamentals and overtones, musical scales, harmony, and production, detection, and perception of sound. This course is intended for non-science majors and satisfies the Area II General Education elective in Natural Science. (2 lecture hours + 2 lab hours).


PHY 1200 Physics for Video Games (4)

An introduction to laws of physics needed to produce games, simulations, and computer animations with compelling realism. Topics include kinematics, Newtons laws of motion, conservation of momentum, conservation of energy, and rotational dynamics, with applications to projectile motion, collisions, oscillations, and rotational motion. Laboratory topics include measurement, graphical interpretation and curve fits, video analysis, and simulation development. No programming experience is required. This course is intended for non-science majors and satisfies the Area II General Education requirement. (2 lecture hours + 2 lab hours).


PHY 1510 General Physics I (4)

An introduction to mechanics, properties of matter, waves, sound, and thermodynamics. This course is intended for science majors who are not required to take calculus-based physics for their major. This course satisfies the Area II General Education elective in Natural Science. The lecture must be taken concurrently with the lab (PHY-1511).


PHY 1511 General Physics I Laboratory (4)

A laboratory to accompany PHY-1510. Topics include measurement, error analysis, graphical interpretation and curve fits, video analysis, and computer data acquisition interfaces and sensors. Applications are congruent with topics covered in PHY-1510.


PHY 1520 General Physics II (4)

An introduction to electricity and magnetism, geometrical and physical optics, relativity, and atomic and nuclear physics. The course is intended for science majors who are not required to take calculus-based physics for their major. The lecture must be taken concurrently with the lab (PHY-1521).


PHY 1521 General Physics II Laboratory (4)

A laboratory to accompany PHY-1520. Topics include measurement, error analysis, graphical interpretation and curve fits, video analysis, and computer data acquisition interfaces and sensors. Applications are congruent with topics covered in PHY-1520.


PHY 2001 Research and Scientific Writing in Physics I (4)

An introduction to research methods and scientific writing in the area of physics. This course emphasizes critical review of scientific literature, formulation of research problems, design of experiments, collection of experimental data, discussion of uncertainty and error analysis. The student will begin an independent year-long research project which will continue into PHY-2002.


PHY 2002 Research and Scientific Writing in Physics II (4)

An introduction to research methods and scientific writing in the area of physics. This course is a continuation of PHY-2001 and emphasizes presentation of experimental results, in written, oral, and poster formats. Each student will learn how to graphically display results with MATLAB and prepare scientific articles with LaTeX. Prerequisites: PHY-2001


PHY 2010 Fundamentals of Physics I (4)

A calculus-based study of mechanics, waves, and thermal physics with emphasis on atomic models and fundamental principles. This course satisfies the Area II General Education elective in Natural Science. Topics include various applications of fundamental principles to matter and interactions, including classical, relativistic, and quantum systems. (6 hours of integrated lecture and lab). Co-requisite or prerequisite MTH 1410


PHY 2020 Fundamentals of Physics II (4)

A calculus-based study of electricity and magnetism, and geometrical and physical optics, with emphasis on atomic models, fields, and the classical interaction of light and matter. (6 hours of integrated lecture and lab). Co-requisite or prerequisite MTH-1420. Prerequisites: PHY-2010


PHY 2030 Fundamentals of Physics III (4)

An introduction to space-time physics (relativity and gravity) and quantum physics with applications in astronomy, atomic physics, solid-state physics, nuclear physics, and particle physics. Prerequisites: PHY-2020


PHY 2100 Electronics (4)

An introduction to the major aspects of electronics theory and practice found in scientific and computer instrumentation. Topics include DC and AC circuit analysis, diodes and the PN junction, bipolar junction transistors, transistor amplifiers, operational amplifiers, integrated circuits, analog to digital converters, and digital logic. (6 hours of integrated lecture and lab). Prerequisites: MTH 1420


PHY 3110 Classical Mechanics (4)

An advanced study of Newtonian mechanics applied to particles and systems of particles. Topics include central force motion, oscillators and coupled oscillators, rotating systems and rigid bodies, calculus of variations, and the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formulations of mechanics. Prerequisites: PHY-2020, MTH 2410, and MTH 3610 (MTH 2310 and MTH 3410 may be taken in place of MTH 3610)


PHY 3210 Electromagnetism (4)

An advanced study of electromagnetic theory using the methods of vector calculus. Topics include electrostatics of conductors and dielectrics, electric currents, magnetic fields, Maxwells equations, wave propagation in media, and electromagnetic radiation. Offered Spring in odd years.


PHY 3310 Quantum Mechanics (4)

An introduction to non-relativistic quantum mechanics and its physical interpretation. Topics include operator mechanics, matrix mechanics, the Schrodinger equation, one-dimensional potentials, bound states, tunneling, and central potential problems in three dimensions including the hydrogen atom. Offered Fall in odd years.


PHY 3400 Statistical and Thermal Physics (4)

An introduction to the microscopic description of thermodynamics and its application to macroscopic systems. Topics include temperature, heat, internal energy, entropy, phase transformations, kinetic theory, classical and quantum statistical distributions. Offered Spring in even years.


PHY 4000 Undergraduate Research in Physics (4)

Research of a theoretical, computational, or experimental topic in physics. Results will be given in a written paper and an oral presentation to the seminar participants and department faculty. Students may satisfy the research component of this course through a summer research experience, but must submit a written paper and give a department seminar on their summer research project. Course may be repeated. Prerequisites: PHY-2030 or permission of the instructor.