Physics II


Winter 2014 quarter

Taught by

Michael Wolfson


college algebra, calculus, and Newton's laws of motion

This course is the 2 nd of a three quarter comprehensive sequence in general physics.  It is designed to expose one to a wide array of concepts in the natural sciences, and will emphasize the use of the ‘scientific method.’  The course will involve a combination of lectures, discussions, and hands on lab exercises involving the acquisition and analysis of experimental data to be compared with theoretical predictions.

The course will cover fundamental concepts in wave theory and thermodynamics.  For wave theory, the harmonic oscillator will be the starting point, and lead into the linear wave equation, with applications illustrated for optics, acoustics, and waves derived from density variations in a fluid (e.g. ocean tides).   The phenomena of refraction, diffraction, and dispersion will be considered and related to the “geometric optics” approximation.  In the thermodynamics portion, the example of diffusive “Brownian motion” will be used to reveal the fundamentals of kinetic theory and the probabilistic interpretation for many-body problems will be discussed.  Finally, temperature, heat, and entropy will be covered in its relation to the first and second laws of thermodynamics.


Program Details

Fields of Study

Preparatory for studies or careers in

science and engineering

Location and Schedule

Campus location



Offered during: Evening

Advertised schedule: 6-9:30p Mon; 6-10p Wed


Buy books for this program through Greener Bookstore.

Online Learning

Hybrid Online Learning < 25% Delivered Online:


Date Revision
December 2nd, 2013 Course added Dec. 2, 2013.

Registration Information

Credits: 6 (Winter)

Class standing: Freshmen–Senior

Maximum enrollment: 25


Course Reference Number

(6 credits): 20401

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