Syllabus: B CUSP 143, Winter 2009
General Physics: Mechanics
Lecture Instructor: Matt DePies
<>Course WWW: http://faculty.washington.edu/mrdepies
Office Hours TTh 2-3 Room: UW1-151
- Also available by appointment in my
- Lecture: UW2 140 Lecture schedule: TTh 3:30 to 5:10pm
- Lab: CC-331 (Cascadia) Th 11am to 1 pm
- Course Texts: Walker, "Physics", 3rd edition (UW custom Volume
1); and McDermott and
Shaffer "Tutorials in
- NOTE: Concurrent enrollment in LAB B CUSP 146 is mandatory
- Webassign.com homework will be due as announced, typically weekly.
- Tentative Weekly Course Schedule:
<>The schedule for B CUSP 143 is available on the course website.
This will be followed as closely as possible, and
Lecture Instructor's Comments
First and foremost I would like to say welcome to physics at the
UW Bothell. For some of you this may be your first physics
course, and I hope you enjoy many facets of this intellectual
endeavour. I will do my best to make the quarter an enjoyable
experience and appreciate in class participation and questions from
students. Always feel free to ask questions, and if I can't
respond in class, please come to my office.
BCUSP 143 is the first of a three-quarter
physics courses. You should find
course challenging and stimulating, though perhaps it will not fit your
preconceptions of what a university physics course should be. I hope
you also find it to be interesting and enjoyable. Have a great quarter!
You are strongly encouraged to visit with me regularly during
by appointment, by e-mail, etc. Get used to the idea of
the Professor outside of class during the quarter; it will pay off for
you in many ways as the years go by! This will not happen unless YOU
the initiative, and now is a great time to start.
Memorization of material is not particularly helpful in this
goal in this class should be to understand how each new topic is
to all of the previous material, and how the concepts, rules and
can be applied to solve real-world problems. Never let anything go by
you do not understand. Generally, ask questions immediately. If it is
to interrupt, make a quick note to yourself and inquire later.
My sincere hope is that you will come to view the world in a new
way, as I have after learning physics. For the most part the hard
work of succeeding in a physics course is up the student. One can
think one has understood the material, but if one is unable to apply
the knowledge, the subject was not truly learned!
- Expect to study hard for this course. Physics is by no
means an easy subject, and you must pay for the knowledge you
gain with time and effort.
- For many the mathematics will be challenging. Don't worry
too much, it is fairly typical in physics courses for the math
requirements to be ahead of students' current placement. This is
remedied by in-class work and homework.
- Be aware that many technical majors have a minimum grade
a core of lower-division technical classes including the General
Therefore, each student is strongly urged to discuss
entry requirements with their undergraduate or departmental advisors,
plan their course loads accordingly. The course grading policy is
Concurrent enrollment in BCUSP 143 lecture and LAB BCUSP 146 lab is
will receive a combined grade for lecture and lab. The final
course grade is based on the best two of three midterms, the final
the HW, potential supplemental HW,
lecture exercises (using the new infrared response system), and lab
participation and reports. The lecture instructor may adjust
individual final grades
by no more than 0.2 grade points (about 5 % out of 4.0 possible) based
on records from the lecture infrared response system and/or the
homework related to the lecture. All percentages in the
summary below are used to determine your raw
before this adjustment is applied.
- Midterm exams: There will be three closed-book midterm
midterm will emphasize recent material, but may include questions
with topics from far earlier in the course. The exams will include both
multiple choice and essay-style questions. Only the best two of three
of the z-score [(your score - class average) / (std deviation)] will
toward the final course grade. Your lowest midterm score (relative to
mean) will be dropped. After correcting for different average scores on
different midterms, the midterms will contribute 40% to your final raw
grade. You are permitted to bring one 8.5"x11" page of notes (front
to each midterm. Calculators are permitted. Cell phones, radios, etc.
are not permitted.
Laptop computers are not permitted, and the use of the
capability now available on many calculators is not permitted.
are to be your own work; you are not permitted to collaborate
any other person. The University reserves the right to ask for
valid identification from any student during examinations.
- Note that there will be no make-up exams in BCUSP 143.
outside professional, service, or career commitments (i.e. military
ROTC, professional conference presentation, NCAA sports, etc.)
exactly with the exam dates must contact the intructor early in the
quarter to establish alternate examination procedures. Students who
miss an exam without making prior arrangements with the lecture
will drop that exam score. Except for extreme circumstances, a final
of 0.0 may be assigned to any student who misses two midterm exams.
- Final Exam: A one or two-hour closed-book comprehensive
25% of the final raw grade will take place on Tuesday, March from 3:30
to 5:10pm. This examination will cover material from the entire
You are permitted to bring one 8.5"x11" page of notes (front and back)
to the final exam. Calculators are permitted. Cell phones, radios, etc.
are not permitted. Laptop computers are not permitted, and the
of the text-storage capability now available on many calculators is not
permitted. The final exam is to be your own work; you are not
to collaborate with any other person.The Physics department reserves
right to ask for valid identification from any student during
A final grade of 0.0 may be assigned to any student who does not take
- Exam Re-grades: If you believe that the points on the
were incorrectly totaled or if there is a gross error in the grading,
may return an exam for regrading. To do so, you must resubmit the
no later than at the beginning of the lecture following the one in
the exams are returned. You must write a brief note on the front page
attached to the front page of the exam explaining the possible error in
the grading. Do not make *any* changes or marks on the other pages
the examination. Portions of each examination are scanned or
You should be aware that any request for a regrade may result in a
of the entire exam. Therefore your total score may increase or decrease.
- Labs and In-class Tutorials: Please note that grades
for lab and tutorial form
a significant percentage of your overall grade for the course. Also, completion
of most of the lab work is required in order to
the course. For example, if you complete fewer than 5 labs during
the quarter, and do not make up the work, your grade for the entire
will be 0.0 ! Even completing 5 of the 6 labs will reduce your
significantly, by 1.2 to 1.3 standard deviations. Do not skip these
Your responsibilty: Check your
on the webassign.com system every week or two and report any problems
to both the
Lab, tutorial and exam grades should be recorded for your review within
one week from the date that papers are submitted for grading. Tycho
grades should be recorded within 24 hours of submission. Supplemental
should be recorded every two weeks or so. Grading problems that are
in a timely fashion will be investigated and, if action is warranted,
corrected. The instructor may choose to ignore grading
that are not reported in a timely fashion.
- Lecture homework will be assigned and collected weekly through
system. The problems will be assigned directly from the course
- In-class assignments may be given and completed at home
- Some homework will be supplementary to regular homework and