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PHYS107 – Modern Mechanics

2017 – S1 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit Convenor / Lecturer
Daniel Zucker
Contact via daniel.zucker@mq.edu.au
E6B 2.705
By appointment
Lecturer
Deb Kane
Contact via deb.kane@mq.edu.au
E6B 2.701
By appointment
Tutor
Douglas Little
Contact via douglas.little@mq.edu.au
C5A 417
By appointment
Lab Technical Coordinator
Danny Cochran
Contact via danny.cochran@mq.edu.au
E7B 122
By appointment
First Year Lab Academic Coordinator
Helen Pask
Contact via helen.pask@mq.edu.au
E6B 2.607
By appointment
Credit points Credit points
3
Prerequisites Prerequisites
[(HSC Mathematics Band 4-6 or Extension 1 Band E2-E4 or Extension 2) or MATH130 or MATH123(HD)] and (PHYS130 or HSC Physics Band 4 or 5 or 6)
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
This unit, together with PHYS106, provides an overview of physics both for students primarily intending to study physics, astronomy or photonics beyond first year, and for engineering students who wish to explore physics at a greater depth. As well as broadening their experience in basic classical Newtonian physics of matter and waves, and Maxwell's theory of electromagnetism, in this pair of units students are introduced to the main theories underlying modern physics: quantum mechanics, thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, and Einstein's theory of relativity, with an emphasis on understanding the interrelationship between these fundamental ideas. Fundamentals of experimental method and data analysis are taught in well-equipped laboratories using examples which support and complement the lecture course.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  4. Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  5. Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  6. Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.
  7. Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

General Assessment Information

This unit has hurdle requirements, specifying a minimum standard that must be attained in several aspects of the unit. To pass this unit you must obtain a mark of at least:

50% in the unit overall, as well as 

  • at least 40% in the final examination, and 
  • at least 40% in each of the laboratory activities, and
  • at least 40% in at least 7 of 11 quizzes

Second-chance hurdle examinations will be offered in the week of July 24 - 28.  Results will be released on July 13.  You will be notified shortly after that date of your eligibility for a hurdle retry and you must also make yourself available during that week to take advantage of this opportunity.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Laboratory Work 20% See lab timetable
Tutorials 25% Each week
Video Exposition 5% Week 12
Final Examination 50% Yes University Examination Period

Laboratory Work

Due: See lab timetable
Weighting: 20%
This is a hurdle assessment task (see assessment policy for more information on hurdle assessment tasks)

The marker (one of the demonstrators) will place a marking sticker at the end of your work and here they will note any issues with your lab work and provide any other feedback. Be sure to check this feedback when you return for your next laboratory class. A maximum mark of 20 will be awarded for each of the lab sessions. To receive full marks you will need to a) record your results and analysis clearly and concisely, and b) demonstrate (through your analysis) a good understanding of the physical principles involved in the experiment.

Satisfactory completion of laboratories is a hurdle requirement. You must attend all ten laboratory sessions. They commence in week 1You must obtain a mark of at least 40% in each of the laboratory activities to have the potential to pass the unit. If you miss a session or fail an activity, you must complete a “Request to schedule a make-up laboratory session” form. You will find it on iLearn, or you can click the link below. Make-up lessons will be offered in the second week of semester break (i.e., the week commencing 24 April) and in Week 13.

Request to schedule a make-up laboratory session

Preparation is required for each of the lab sessions 2-10. You will find the prelab activities in the Laboratory Resources section of iLearn. Your prelab work will account for some of the marks for each laboratory session.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  • Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  • Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Tutorials

Due: Each week
Weighting: 25%
This is a hurdle assessment task (see assessment policy for more information on hurdle assessment tasks)

Each week, through the online system, you will be given a number of problems that will be worked through in the tutorials by the tutor. You are strongly encouraged to try them before the tutorials so that you can follow through the exposition by the tutor.

In addition to these problems for tutorial, you will also be given separate assessment problems. During the tutorials each week there will be a short (<20min)  in-class quiz involving multiple choice with written problem solving based on the assessment problems given out in the previous week. You will be asked to show your written work on the quiz sheet. The quizzes will be graded both on the multiple-choice answer and the clarity (and correctness) of your written solution. The marks will be uploaded into iLearn the following week and the marked hardcopies will be available in the Science Centre in the MUSE to be picked up.

All quizzes will be graded (11 quizzes - quizzes start in week 2) and we will take the best 8 scores for the semester to contribute to your overall tutorial grade (25%).

Satisfactory performance in quizzes is a hurdle requirement. You must obtain a mark of at least 40% in at least 7 out of the 11 scheduled quizzes to have the potential to pass the unit. No additional quizzes will be offered for those who fail to meet this requirement.

We require effective participation in tutorials, entailing a focused work effort and attendance for the full session. If you do not participate effectively in a given week, for example leaving the tutorial early without extenuating circumstances, it will be grounds for receiving a score of zero for that week's quiz, and that quiz will then not count towards passing the hurdle requirement.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Video Exposition

Due: Week 12
Weighting: 5%

Special Projects:

The purpose of these is to assist in your understanding of the topics studied by developing a clear focused exposition on a particular topic with associated demonstration, e.g., see the Veritasium YouTube channel.

A list of 10-15 topics for exposition will be given out in week 4. Students work as a combined group (maximum 4 in a group), on a particular topic. Groups will choose their topics by week 5. By week 6 a schedule of lab sessions will be posted online for groups to use to develop their exposition and plan/execute their demonstration and video recording. Before recording students will be asked to have their exposition script reviewed by either a lab demonstrator or lecturer. Groups will be asked to prepare a video of their exposition (max 5mins)[either using their own phone or via a camera in the lab] by week 12 and upload it to iLearn. The video will be graded based on the clarity of their exposition and not on their skills at video recording.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Final Examination

Due: University Examination Period
Weighting: 50%
This is a hurdle assessment task (see assessment policy for more information on hurdle assessment tasks)

You are expected to present yourself for examination at the time and place designated in the University Examination Timetable (http://www.timetables.mq.edu.au/exam/).

The final examination will be three hours long and will cover content from the entire unit.

The use of calculators in examinations for this unit is permitted but, in accordance with the Faculty's policy, calculators with a full alphabet on the keyboard are not allowed.

The final examination is a hurdle requirement. You must obtain a mark of at least 40% to have the potential to pass the unit. If your mark in the final examination is between 30% and 39% inclusive then you will be given a second and final chance to attain the required level of performance.

Please note that, if you apply for Disruption to Study for your final examination, you must make yourself available for the week of July 24 – 28, 2017.  If you are not available at that time, there is no guarantee an additional examination time will be offered. Specific examination dates and times will be determined at a later date.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.

Delivery and Resources

Classes 

Lectures (attend all):

Lecture 1: Thursday 9am-10am, C5C Collaborative Forum 

Lecture 2: Friday 12pm-1pm, E6A 102 Theatrette

Lecture 3: Friday 4pm-5pm, E7B 100 Theatrette

 

Tutorials (register for one):

Friday 11am-12pm, X5B 136 Tutorial Room

Friday 1pm-2pm, C5C 238 Tutorial Room

Friday 1pm-2pm, E3A 166 Tutorial Room 

 

Practical Laboratories (register for one):

Monday 9am-12pm, E7B 114

Monday 1pm-4pm, E7B 114

Monday 5pm-8pm, E7B 114

Tuesday 9am-12pm, E7B 114

Tuesday 2pm-5pm, E7B 114

Wednesday 9am-12pm, E7B 114

 

Video Laboratories 

Thursday 2pm-5pm in Weeks 8, 9, 10 : E7B 114

 

NB: Required laboratory introduction sessions and tutorials with a practice quiz will occur in Week 1. Full laboratories and tutorials with marked quizzes will commence in the week 2 of the semester. You must complete the Week 1 laboratory introduction before you will be allowed to attend any further labs.

Required and Recommended Texts and/or Materials

Required Text

Matter and Interactions by Ruth Chabay and Bruce Sherwood.

Either Volume 1 (Paperback) or the combined Volume (hardbound). Note that Volume 2 will be the required text for PHYS 106 in semester 2.

Required Resources

The PHYS107 Laboratory Notes will be available online using iLearn before the laboratory sessions begin in the first week of the semester. 

Web Resources

More information on the required text as well as additional resource material can be found at http://www.matterandinteractions.org/

There are also other high quality learning resources on the web which we would recommend to you to use in your studies. The HyperPhysics site hosted by the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Georgia State University is widely acclaimed and used. The site also has mathematics learning resources on the maths used in physics.

http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/hframe.html (Mechanics, and, Electricity & Magnetism).

Increasingly there are excellent web-based interactive simulations available – some are in the on-line resources that support the textbook. We encourage you to conduct your own web searches for others, and to develop your own critical judgment of which sites provide high quality resources that assist your learning. Two that we recommend to you are:

http://www.explorelearning.com/ The Explorelearning Gizmos: follow links to Grade 9-12, Physics, Motion and Force; and Electricity & Magnetism. You will have to register to use this site.

• http://phet.colorado.edu/simulations/index.php?cat=Featured_Sims The University of Colorado, Boulder, Physics Education Technology (PhET) Simulations: follow the links to Motion; Energy, Work & Power; and Electricity, Magnets and Circuits. This site also contains maths resources, for example vector addition.

Technology Used and Required 

Unit Web Page

The web page for this unit can be accessed via the PHYS107 iLearn page.

Please check this web page regularly for material available for downloading.

Teaching and Learning Strategy

This unit is taught through lectures and tutorials and through undertaking laboratory experiments and a special exposition activity. We strongly encourage students to attend lectures because they provide a much more interactive and effective learning experience than simply reading a text book. The lecturer is able to interpret the physics that you will be learning, showing you the relationships between different components/concepts and emphasising the key physics principles involved. Questions during and outside lectures are strongly encouraged in this unit - please do not be afraid to ask, as it is likely that your classmates will also want to know the answer. You should aim to read the relevant sections of the textbook before and after lectures and discuss the content with classmates and lecturers.

This unit includes a compulsory experimental component. The experiments are stand-alone investigations and may include topics not covered by the lecture content of this course. They are an important part of the learning for this unit and the skills learned are essential for a well-rounded physics graduate.

You should aim to spend an average of 3 hours per week understanding the material and working on the tutorial problems and the assignments. You may wish to discuss your tutorial and assignment problems with other students, the tutors and the lecturers, but you are required to be able to show your own work (see the note on plagiarism). Tutorials and assignments are provided as one of the key learning activities for this unit, they are not there just for assessment. It is by applying knowledge learned from lectures and textbooks to solve problems that you are best able to test and develop your skills and understanding of the material.

Unit Schedule

Schedule of Topics

The unit is divided into two halves. The first half is taught by Associate Professor Daniel Zucker and the second by Professor Deb Kane.

The textbook sections covered are listed as follows. As a rough guide we will be progressing through the listed chapters at a rate of one every week. You should use this as a guide to plan your textbook reading.

The content of the unit is based on the following chapters of the text by Chabay and Sherwood:

 

Week 1

Interactions and motion: basic mechanics and momentum

2

The momentum principle: Newton’s second law

3

The fundamental interactions: gravitational field, electric field, strong interaction

4

Contact interactions: solids, tension, stress, strain etc, friction, mass-­‐spring oscillation

5

 

Rate of change of momentum: forces in a system, statics

 

6

The energy principle: mechanical energy, potential energy in multiparticle systems, gravitational potential energy, electric potential energy

7

 

Internal energy: spring potential energy, path independence of potential energy, thermal energy, energy flow due to temperature,

 

8

Energy quantisation: photons, electronic energy levels, the effect of temperature, vibrational levels, rotational levels, other energy levels

9

 

Multiparticle systems: motion of the centre of mass, rotational kinetic energy, analysing real systems

 

10

Collisions: internal interactions, inelastic and elastic, head-­‐on with equal / unequal mass, frames of reference, scattering in 2-­‐D and 3-­‐D,

11

 

Angular momentum: angular momentum principle, multiparticle systems, systems with zero / non-­‐zero torque, angular momentum quantisation

12

 

Entropy: limits on the possible: solids, thermal equilibrium, second law, heat capacity, Boltzmann distribution

13

 

Revision of Unit and Exam Question Preparation

 

Learning and Teaching Activities

Lectures

There will be three one hour lectures per week. During these the content of the unit will be explained, example problems will be solved and physics principles demonstrated.

Tutorials

There will be one tutorial per week. During this time students will take a quiz and work through problems related to the previous week's lecture content.

Laboratory

Ten three-hour laboratory classes will be held during the semester. The first is an introductory session. It is held in Week 1, and no pre-lab work is required. It includes important safety information and therefore attendance is mandatory. Students can’t attend their second laboratory session until they have completed the first. During the laboratory sessions students will engage in practical exercises to develop their experimental skills and to further their understanding of the physics concepts.

Expositions

Groups of students build a 5 minute video demonstration of an interesting physical concept covered within the course. Thie will develop their depth of understanding of the concepts involved and connect them to the physical world.

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy (in effect until Dec 4th, 2017): http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html

Special Consideration Policy (in effect from Dec 4th, 2017): https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policies/special-consideration

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Requirements in order to complete the unit satisfactorily:

As noted above, to pass this unit you must obtain a mark of at least 50% in the unit overall, as well as 

  • at least 40% in the final examination  
  • at least 40% in each of the laboratory activities
  • at least 40% in at least 7 of 11 quizzes

Second-chance hurdle examinations will be offered in the week of July 24 - 28.  Results will be released on July 13.  You will be notified shortly after that date of your eligibility for a hurdle retry and you must also make yourself available during that week to take advantage of this opportunity.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

Commitment to Continuous Learning

Our graduates will have enquiring minds and a literate curiosity which will lead them to pursue knowledge for its own sake. They will continue to pursue learning in their careers and as they participate in the world. They will be capable of reflecting on their experiences and relationships with others and the environment, learning from them, and growing - personally, professionally and socially.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  • Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Assessment tasks

  • Laboratory Work
  • Tutorials
  • Video Exposition
  • Final Examination

Learning and teaching activities

  • There will be three one hour lectures per week. During these the content of the unit will be explained, example problems will be solved and physics principles demonstrated.
  • There will be one tutorial per week. During this time students will take a quiz and work through problems related to the previous week's lecture content.
  • Ten three-hour laboratory classes will be held during the semester. The first is an introductory session. It is held in Week 1, and no pre-lab work is required. It includes important safety information and therefore attendance is mandatory. Students can’t attend their second laboratory session until they have completed the first. During the laboratory sessions students will engage in practical exercises to develop their experimental skills and to further their understanding of the physics concepts.
  • Groups of students build a 5 minute video demonstration of an interesting physical concept covered within the course. Thie will develop their depth of understanding of the concepts involved and connect them to the physical world.

Problem Solving and Research Capability

Our graduates should be capable of researching; of analysing, and interpreting and assessing data and information in various forms; of drawing connections across fields of knowledge; and they should be able to relate their knowledge to complex situations at work or in the world, in order to diagnose and solve problems. We want them to have the confidence to take the initiative in doing so, within an awareness of their own limitations.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  • Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  • Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Assessment tasks

  • Laboratory Work
  • Tutorials
  • Video Exposition
  • Final Examination

Learning and teaching activities

  • There will be three one hour lectures per week. During these the content of the unit will be explained, example problems will be solved and physics principles demonstrated.
  • There will be one tutorial per week. During this time students will take a quiz and work through problems related to the previous week's lecture content.
  • Ten three-hour laboratory classes will be held during the semester. The first is an introductory session. It is held in Week 1, and no pre-lab work is required. It includes important safety information and therefore attendance is mandatory. Students can’t attend their second laboratory session until they have completed the first. During the laboratory sessions students will engage in practical exercises to develop their experimental skills and to further their understanding of the physics concepts.
  • Groups of students build a 5 minute video demonstration of an interesting physical concept covered within the course. Thie will develop their depth of understanding of the concepts involved and connect them to the physical world.

Creative and Innovative

Our graduates will also be capable of creative thinking and of creating knowledge. They will be imaginative and open to experience and capable of innovation at work and in the community. We want them to be engaged in applying their critical, creative thinking.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  • Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  • Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Assessment tasks

  • Laboratory Work
  • Tutorials
  • Video Exposition
  • Final Examination

Learning and teaching activities

  • There will be three one hour lectures per week. During these the content of the unit will be explained, example problems will be solved and physics principles demonstrated.
  • There will be one tutorial per week. During this time students will take a quiz and work through problems related to the previous week's lecture content.
  • Ten three-hour laboratory classes will be held during the semester. The first is an introductory session. It is held in Week 1, and no pre-lab work is required. It includes important safety information and therefore attendance is mandatory. Students can’t attend their second laboratory session until they have completed the first. During the laboratory sessions students will engage in practical exercises to develop their experimental skills and to further their understanding of the physics concepts.
  • Groups of students build a 5 minute video demonstration of an interesting physical concept covered within the course. Thie will develop their depth of understanding of the concepts involved and connect them to the physical world.

Effective Communication

We want to develop in our students the ability to communicate and convey their views in forms effective with different audiences. We want our graduates to take with them the capability to read, listen, question, gather and evaluate information resources in a variety of formats, assess, write clearly, speak effectively, and to use visual communication and communication technologies as appropriate.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  • Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Assessment tasks

  • Laboratory Work
  • Video Exposition
  • Final Examination

Learning and teaching activities

  • There will be three one hour lectures per week. During these the content of the unit will be explained, example problems will be solved and physics principles demonstrated.
  • There will be one tutorial per week. During this time students will take a quiz and work through problems related to the previous week's lecture content.
  • Ten three-hour laboratory classes will be held during the semester. The first is an introductory session. It is held in Week 1, and no pre-lab work is required. It includes important safety information and therefore attendance is mandatory. Students can’t attend their second laboratory session until they have completed the first. During the laboratory sessions students will engage in practical exercises to develop their experimental skills and to further their understanding of the physics concepts.
  • Groups of students build a 5 minute video demonstration of an interesting physical concept covered within the course. Thie will develop their depth of understanding of the concepts involved and connect them to the physical world.

Engaged and Ethical Local and Global citizens

As local citizens our graduates will be aware of indigenous perspectives and of the nation's historical context. They will be engaged with the challenges of contemporary society and with knowledge and ideas. We want our graduates to have respect for diversity, to be open-minded, sensitive to others and inclusive, and to be open to other cultures and perspectives: they should have a level of cultural literacy. Our graduates should be aware of disadvantage and social justice, and be willing to participate to help create a wiser and better society.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Socially and Environmentally Active and Responsible

We want our graduates to be aware of and have respect for self and others; to be able to work with others as a leader and a team player; to have a sense of connectedness with others and country; and to have a sense of mutual obligation. Our graduates should be informed and active participants in moving society towards sustainability.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcome

  • Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.

Capable of Professional and Personal Judgement and Initiative

We want our graduates to have emotional intelligence and sound interpersonal skills and to demonstrate discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgement. They will exercise initiative as needed. They will be capable of risk assessment, and be able to handle ambiguity and complexity, enabling them to be adaptable in diverse and changing environments.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  • Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Assessment tasks

  • Laboratory Work
  • Tutorials
  • Video Exposition

Learning and teaching activities

  • There will be one tutorial per week. During this time students will take a quiz and work through problems related to the previous week's lecture content.
  • Ten three-hour laboratory classes will be held during the semester. The first is an introductory session. It is held in Week 1, and no pre-lab work is required. It includes important safety information and therefore attendance is mandatory. Students can’t attend their second laboratory session until they have completed the first. During the laboratory sessions students will engage in practical exercises to develop their experimental skills and to further their understanding of the physics concepts.

Discipline Specific Knowledge and Skills

Our graduates will take with them the intellectual development, depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content in their chosen fields to make them competent and confident in their subject or profession. They will be able to demonstrate, where relevant, professional technical competence and meet professional standards. They will be able to articulate the structure of knowledge of their discipline, be able to adapt discipline-specific knowledge to novel situations, and be able to contribute from their discipline to inter-disciplinary solutions to problems.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  • Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  • Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Assessment tasks

  • Laboratory Work
  • Tutorials
  • Video Exposition
  • Final Examination

Learning and teaching activities

  • There will be three one hour lectures per week. During these the content of the unit will be explained, example problems will be solved and physics principles demonstrated.
  • There will be one tutorial per week. During this time students will take a quiz and work through problems related to the previous week's lecture content.
  • Ten three-hour laboratory classes will be held during the semester. The first is an introductory session. It is held in Week 1, and no pre-lab work is required. It includes important safety information and therefore attendance is mandatory. Students can’t attend their second laboratory session until they have completed the first. During the laboratory sessions students will engage in practical exercises to develop their experimental skills and to further their understanding of the physics concepts.
  • Groups of students build a 5 minute video demonstration of an interesting physical concept covered within the course. Thie will develop their depth of understanding of the concepts involved and connect them to the physical world.

Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

We want our graduates to be capable of reasoning, questioning and analysing, and to integrate and synthesise learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments; to be able to critique constraints, assumptions and limitations; to be able to think independently and systemically in relation to scholarly activity, in the workplace, and in the world. We want them to have a level of scientific and information technology literacy.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Understand and be able to apply Newton's laws of motion, in particular towards systems in equilibrium, and to solve problems involving static equilibrium.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems involving friction, work, kinetic and potential energy, energy conservation, linear momentum of individual and systems of particles, and applications to gravity, ballistics and harmonic oscillators.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of, and be able to solve, problems in rotational motion, including rolling, torque and angular momentum.
  • Have an understanding of the physics concepts of temperature; heat; and, the thermal properties of matter, including thermal expansion and heat capacities.
  • Be able to perform physical measurements, to record these results and their analysis, and to draw written conclusions in a clear, concise and systematic manner.
  • Be able to identify, record and understand the uncertainty in physical measurements and to undertake appropriate uncertainty analysis of results, including statistical analysis.
  • Be able to clearly explain concepts learned and illustrate them to their peers.

Assessment tasks

  • Laboratory Work
  • Tutorials
  • Video Exposition
  • Final Examination

Learning and teaching activities

  • There will be three one hour lectures per week. During these the content of the unit will be explained, example problems will be solved and physics principles demonstrated.
  • There will be one tutorial per week. During this time students will take a quiz and work through problems related to the previous week's lecture content.
  • Ten three-hour laboratory classes will be held during the semester. The first is an introductory session. It is held in Week 1, and no pre-lab work is required. It includes important safety information and therefore attendance is mandatory. Students can’t attend their second laboratory session until they have completed the first. During the laboratory sessions students will engage in practical exercises to develop their experimental skills and to further their understanding of the physics concepts.
  • Groups of students build a 5 minute video demonstration of an interesting physical concept covered within the course. Thie will develop their depth of understanding of the concepts involved and connect them to the physical world.

Changes from Previous Offering

Laboratory activities, tutorial quizzes and the final exam have been established as hurdle requirements for the unit, meaning that a minimum standard must be achieved in each assessment task in order to receive a passing grade for the unit as a whole.

General Reminders

Student Liaison Committee

The Physics and Astronomy Department values feedback from its students. Once a semester a meeting of the Student Liaison Committee is called and representatives from each of the PHYS/PHTN/ASTR units have an opportunity to voice their opinions about the structure of the unit and how it is taught.  Further information and a call for representatives will be made in lectures closer to the meeting date.

Email Communication

The unit web page and your student email account are the primary ways that the unit lecturers can communicate with you outside of lectures.  Please check your student email accounts at least once a day for messages concerning the unit.

Laboratory details

Laboratory Requirements

The laboratory component is considered an essential component of your studies and so counts for an appreciable fraction of your final assessment (20%). 

The laboratory work is designed to introduce you to some of the basic skills and techniques that are used in experimental physical science.  Some of the activities in the laboratory may not relate directly to the material in the lecture course.  This is because the laboratory activities are intended not only to illustrate physical concepts but also to to provide training in the experimental skills that are required of practicing physicists, scientists and engineers.

You will be provided with instructional material in the form of Laboratory Notes which can be found in the Laboratory Resources section of iLearn, and assisted in the laboratory by a team of demonstrators, many of whom are postgraduate research students. This work is designed to be carried out independently of the lectures, although some of these topics will be discussed in lectures.  Indeed there is some advantage in becoming familiar with a topic in an experimental situation before you meet it in lectures.  That is often the case in real life!  

You will be issued with a Laboratory Notebook in Week 1. For each laboratory session, except in Week 1, you are required to complete some preparatory work (Pre-Lab) before attending your nominated Lab session. Typically the Pre-Lab will require you to bring some material to the lab to be pasted into your lab book. A portion of your mark for each lab session is allocated to the Pre-lab work. 

Location of the 100-level Physics Laboratory, E7B 114

The laboratory is located on the ground floor of building E7B, at the NE corner (room 114).  Entry is from the courtyard at the opposite end to the main staircase. 

Laboratory Attendance Requirements

You are required to attend and to satisfactory complete all rostered laboratory sessions. Each time you attend the laboratory you must sign in and out (legibly) in the attendance book.

If you miss a laboratory session and wish to lodge a "disruption to studies" request you can start this process at https://ask.mq.edu.au.  You will require a medical certificate or other form of evidence to complete this process - contact the unit convenor if you are unsure.

Laboratory classes are compulsory and students who do not attend all classes will be deemed to have failed to meet the learning outcomes of the unit. Moreover, it is a hurdle requirement that you must achieve at least 40% for each laboratory activity.

If you miss a laboratory class, or if you fail to meet the hurdle requirement (at least 40%) for any activity, then you must complete a “Request to schedule a make-up laboratory session” form. You will find it on iLearn, or you can click the link below. Make-up lessons will be run in the second week of the mid-semester break and in week 13.

Request to schedule a make-up laboratory session

Laboratory Assessment

Details of the laboratory assessment have been outlined in the first section above.

Laboratory Safety

You are required to follow all safety guidelines given in the lab manual, and as outlined by your lab supervisor. Food and drink cannot be taken into the laboratory and students without suitable covered footwear will be refused admission.

Laboratory Schedule

The first laboratory session will be in the first week of semester. The schedule of labs is posted in the lab and on the iLearn page. Please attend your nominated laboratory session. If you have difficulty enrolling into a lab session that suits your timetable, then keep trying over a few days as students often move between sessions.