Chapter 1 Objectives: What is Physics?What is Physics?What is Physics?What is Physics? The Scientific Method.The Scientific Method.The Scientific Method.The Scientific Method. How Should I Study Physics?How Should I Study Physics?How Should I Study Physics?How Should I Study Physics? Photo: Courtesy of NASA Testing the Mars Rover
What is Physics? Physics is the science that investigates the fundamental concepts of matter, energy, and space, and the relationships among them. Physics is the most basic of the sciences, underpinning all other disciplines of science, medicine, and engineering. Physicists are problem solvers, often meeting new challenges and developing new theories. NASA
Where might I work as a physicist? A strong physics background prepares you for almost any occupation that involves science or engineering. NIST High Voltage NASA Mars Rover
Scientific Method Underlying all scientific investigation are the guiding principles of the Scientific Method. 1.Statement of problem. 2.Observation: data collection. 3.Hypothesis: proposed explanation 4.Experimental testing. 5.Acceptance or rejection of hypothesis. 1.Statement of problem. 2.Observation: data collection. 3.Hypothesis: proposed explanation 4.Experimental testing. 5.Acceptance or rejection of hypothesis.
An Example of the Scientific Method Albert Einstein once said: “Example isn't another way to teach, it is the only way to teach.” y In this example, we observe a falling object and attempt to predict the distance it will fall in a particular time. The mathematics is largely ignored here in order to just provide the basic steps in the process. Time t
Statement of Problem We need to be able to predict the time to fall for a vertical distance y. y By stating the problem, we simply verbalize a need to know or to be able to predict some event. The problem might not be solvable. Time t
Observations To address the problem, we organize the data and several trial observations. y1y1y1y1 t1t1t1t1 y2y2y2y2 t2t2t2t2 y3y3y3y3 t3t3t3t3 We measure the time for several drops at different heights.
Hypothesis By applying the mathematics and graphing techniques to the observed data, we note that the time of fall is proportional to the square of time, t 2. The following equation is written and the constant k is determined from the data. The hypothesis is now a theory which can be tested. y Time t
Experimental Testing The next step is for us (and for others) to test the hypothesis: If time t is given in seconds (s), the distance y in meters (m) is: Each time the distance is predicted correctly, the theory is reinforced. In order for a theory to be accepted, it must be consistent and repeatable by others.
Accept or Reject Hypothesis Each time the distance is predicted correctly, the theory is accepted. It takes only one instance of proven failure to cause the hypothesis to be rejected! "No amount of experimentation can ever prove me right, one single experiment can prove me wrong." --- Albert Einstein.
How Do I Study Physics? Preparation and hard work are key to any successful learning endeavor. But a major factor not often mentioned is organization. We will discuss several tips for learning physics principles in the following slides.
NOTEBOOK Purchase a loose-leaf filler notebook with tabbed sections such as shown here: 1. HANDOUTS 2. NOTES 3. PROBLEMS 4. EXAMS 5. LABS 6. RESOURCES Hole Punch By organizing all problems, notes, and graded exams, you are always able to review.
Find a Class Partner On the first day of class find someone who is willing to be your class “buddy.” The “buddy system” is your safety net for missed classes, handouts, assignments, returned papers, clarification, etc. Make sure you get his or her name, phone number, and schedule.
Timely Learning Timely learning is efficient learning. It is better to study an hour each day than to cram on weekends. If you wait until the weekend, you must devote valuable time just rebuilding the information. After each lecture, use your next free period to reinforce your understanding.
Outside the Classroom Learning is rarely completed in class. To reinforce teaching, you must work problems on your own as soon after class as possible. Try first, seek help if neces- sary, review examples, work with others. Working prob- lems is the primary way to learn.
I drew a bad teacher.I drew a bad teacher. I can’t read this book!I can’t read this book! I’m not prepared for this.I’m not prepared for this. I don’t have enough time.I don’t have enough time. I’ve got problems: Job, Parents, Friends...I’ve got problems: Job, Parents, Friends... Three courses and a lab—it’s too much!Three courses and a lab—it’s too much! Complaints of Beginning Physics Students
It’s Your Responsibility! As hard as it sounds, the ultimate responsibility for learning rests with you and no one else. Seek help if needed. Check out other books from the library. Study computer tutorials. Review mathematics. Know when exams are scheduled. Contact your instructor. Take Action; Never let things outside your control prevent you from achieving goals!
Power Point Tutorials A major learning asset is available for the 7 th Edition of Physics: Chapter Tutorials. The author has prepared individualized PowerPoint presentations for each chapter.
Effective Use of PPT Tutorials These tutorials are excellent for review prior to lectures, after lectures, before examinations, and before the final examination. They are also very useful to students who miss classes or who desire additional practice and discussion of physical concepts. An on-line learning center offers a variety of other web-based learning opportunities for this course.
Advice From a Master Teacher If your career choice is in technology, science, engineering, or a similar field, there is no more important beginning course than “college physics.”If your career choice is in technology, science, engineering, or a similar field, there is no more important beginning course than “college physics.” Study physics differently than you would approach the liberal arts. Applications and problem solving require different skills and strategies.Study physics differently than you would approach the liberal arts. Applications and problem solving require different skills and strategies.
Advice From a Teacher (Cont.) Plan your course sequences carefully. You must have the necessary preparation for physics, and your concurrent course load must be light.Plan your course sequences carefully. You must have the necessary preparation for physics, and your concurrent course load must be light. Do NOT get behind in physics; the topics are sequential and each successive step requires a mastery of the preceding steps. Cramming is not possible.Do NOT get behind in physics; the topics are sequential and each successive step requires a mastery of the preceding steps. Cramming is not possible.
Test Anxiety How many times have we heard: “I know the material, but I just can’t perform on tests!” It’s like shooting free-throws when a basketball game is on the line. You must practice foul shots until they become automatic during times of high pressure. The major way to deal with such fears is through practice and adequate preparation.
CONCLUSION OF Chapter 1: Introduction to Physics