PHYS253Q: Modern Physics, with Lab.

This course is taught by Dr. Frosso Seitaridou 

Catalog Description:

Fall only. Four credit hours. Prerequisite: Physics 142 or 152 and Math112. Special theory of relativity, wave and particle properties of electromagnetic radation and matter, introduction to quantum mechanics, the Schrodinger equation, atomic models, and simple molecules. Three hours of lecture and one three-hour laboratory per week. 

Welcome to Modern Physics.

This course covers the physical concepts developed in the 20'th century. The concepts we will learn this semester are concepts that almost everybody has heard of (e.g., relativity, x-rays, quantum physics, etc.). Needless to say that these concepts have inspired many works of science fiction and, of course, they have many applications in modern technology. A good understanding of modern physics will help you a) understand modern technology (e.g., GPS, xrays, etc.), b) hone your thinking skills, c) recognize the philosophical implications these concepts have!  Since you have already taken Introductory Physics, by the end of Physics 253 you will have seen and understood almost all physics concepts! I hope you are excited! In addition, you will conduct on your own some of the original experiments that led to the development of these concepts, and you will also work on your scientific writing skills by writing laboratory reports on these experiments.

Goals of the Course 

  At the end of this course, we will be able to: 

1. Have a fundamental understanding of the physical concepts developed in the 20'th century.
2. Apply these concepts in order to solve simple problems in modern physics.
3. Recognize the reasons why some of the concepts are subject to different interpretation by physicists. 
4. Appreciate the philosophical implications of these concepts.
5. Recognize the physics concepts behind modern technological advances.
6. Develop your skills in scientific writing.

    To achieve these goals, we will solve problems, use laboratory exercises, write lab reports, and, depending on interest, I will be giving you some reading assignments that are outside our textbook.