Department of Mathematics and Physics
§ I: PHYS 1103 General Physics I Syllabus
Catalog Description
Prerequisite: MATH 1108, MATH 1110, or equivalent math competency. Corequisite: PHYS 1113 you must
enroll in a section of PHYS 1113 before you can enroll in PHYS 1103. Primarily for life science majors with no
calculus background. Basic concepts of classical physics: fundamental laws of mechanics, heat, electromag-
netism, optics, and conservation principles. Introduction to modern physics: relativity and quantum theory;
atomic, nuclear, and solid-state physics. Application of the physical principles to life sciences. Laboratory fee.
4 credits.
Required Textbook
College Physics, by R. A. Serway and C. Vuille, Cengage Learning, 11e, Chapters 1-14, ISBN 9781305952300
Course Objectives
This course is a rst semester, algebra based physics course for life science and pre-medical majors. It in-
troduces basic concepts, theory, and applications of classical mechanics (matter and motion, kinematics and
dynamics of particles, rigid and elastic bodies, uids, waves) and thermal physics (heat, thermodynamic pro-
cesses). This course:
1. Introduces basic physics concepts in mechanics and thermodynamics;
2. Provides students with the fundamental understanding of the principles and laws of classical physics;
3. Teaches problem solving techniques;
4. Helps to develop analytical thinking;
5. Teaches how to apply the physical principles and knowledge to other disciplines; and,
6. Demonstrates how observation, experiment, and theory work together to continue to expand the fron-
tiers of knowledge of the physical Universe.
The emphasis is on improved critical thinking skills, on developing an ability to approach and solve physics
problems, and on providing a comprehensive resource in introductory physics for a Medical College Admis-
sion Test.
Student Learning Outcomes
Students passing this course should be able to:
1. Explain the basic concepts and laws in mechanics, CC4.1.1;
2. Use the equations of kinematics, Newtons laws of dynamics, free body diagrams, and conservation laws
to determine the motion of physical bodies, CC4.1.2;
3. Explain the basic concepts and laws in thermodynamics, CC4.1.1;
4. Convert a physical situation articulated in English to a mathematical formulation, CC4.1.2;
5. Apply basic mathematical tools, including algebra and vectors, to solve physics problems, CC4.1.2;
6. Exercise the use of physical intuition, including the ability to guess an approximate or conceptual answer
to a physics problem;
7. Recognize whether or not the result of a calculation makes physical sense;
8. Apply the physical knowledge to other disciplines, including life sciences; and,
9. Illustrate how physical observation, experiment, and theory worked together to develop inventions that
advanced our civilization, CC4.1.3.
Students will also achieve the following Core Learning Objectives:
10. the student will be able to articulate structural and/or functional aspects of elements of a portion of the
natural world;
11. use discipline-specic methodologies and technologies to draw conclusions about natural phenomena;
12. illustrate the eects of scientic knowledge and progress on societal issues.
Required Curriculum Content
Key topics covered include:
1. Physical quantities, units, coordinate systems, trigonometry.
2. Motion in one dimension: displacement, velocity, acceleration, motion diagrams, motion with constant
acceleration, freely falling objects.
3. Vectors and two-dimensional motion: vectors and their properties, components of a vector, displace-
ment, velocity, and acceleration in two dimensions, motion in two dimensions, relative velocity.
4. The laws of motion: forces, Newtons rst law, Newtons second law, Newtons third law, applications of
Newtons laws, friction.
5. Energy: work, kinetic energy and the work-energy theorem, gravitational potential energy, conservation
of energy, power.
6. Momentum: momentum and impulse, conservation of momentum, collisions.
7. Rotational motion and gravity: angular velocity and angular acceleration, motion with constant angular
acceleration, relations between angular and linear quantities, centripetal acceleration, Newtons law of
8. Rotational equilibrium and rotational dynamics: torque, conditions for equilibrium, center of gravity,
Newtons second law for rotational motion, rotational kinetic energy, angular momentum.
9. Solid and uids: states of matter, density and pressure, deformation of solids, pressure in a uid, pres-
sure measurements, buoyant forces and Archimedes law, uids in motion, Bernoullis equation.
10. Thermal physics: temperature, temperature measurements, thermal expansion, ideal gas law.
11. Energy in thermal processes: heat and internal energy, specic heat, calorimetry, phase changes.
12. The laws of thermodynamics: work in thermodynamic processes, the rst law of thermodynamics, ther-
mal processes, heat engines and the second law of thermodynamics.
13. Vibrations and waves: Hookes law, elastic potential energy, simple harmonic motion and uniform circu-
lar motion, position, velocity, and acceleration in harmonic motion, motion of a pendulum, mechanical
waves, frequency and wavelength, the speed of waves on strings, interference of waves, reection of
14. Sound: sound waves, the speed of sound, intensity of sound waves, Doppler eect, interference of
sound waves, standing waves, beats.
All sections of PHYS 1103 General Physics I will cover, as a minimum, the material from College Physics, by R.
A. Serway and C. Vuille, Cengage Learning, 11e, Chapters 1-14, ISBN 9781305952300 (2018), as listed:
Section Textbook Topic
Chapter 1 - Introduction
1.1 Standards Of Length, Mass, and Time *
1.2 The Building Blocks of Matter
1.3 Dimensional Analysis *
1.5 Conversion of Units *
1.7 Coordinate Systems
1.8 Trigonometry
1.9 Problem-Solving Strategy
Chapter 2 - Motion in One Dimension
2.1 Displacement
Department Syllabus for PHYS 1103, Spring 2019 Page 2 of 9 Rev. 1.0, January 28, 2019
Section Textbook Topic
2.2 Velocity *
2.3 Acceleration *
2.4 Motion Diagrams
2.5 One-Dimensional Motion with Constant Acceleration
2.6 Freely Falling Objects
Chapter 3 - Vectors and Two-Dimensional Motion
3.1 Vectors and Their Properties *
3.2 Components of a Vector *
3.3 Displacement, Velocity, and Acceleration in Two Dimensions
3.4 Motion in Two Dimensions
3.5 Relative Velocity
Chapter 4 - The Laws of Motion
4.1 Forces *
4.2 Newtons First Law *
4.3 Newtons Second Law *
4.4 Newtons Third Law *
4.5 Applications of Newtons Laws *
4.6 Forces of Friction
Chapter 5 - Energy
5.1 Work *
5.2 Kinetic Energy and the Work-Energy Theorem *
5.3 Gravitational Potential Energy *
5.4 Spring Potential Energy *
5.5 Systems and Energy Conservation *
5.6 Power *
5.7 Work Done by a Varying Force
Chapter 6 - Momentum and Collisions
6.1 Momentum and Impulse
6.2 Conservation of Momentum
6.3 Collisions
6.4 Glancing Collisions
Chapter 7 - Rotational Motion and the Law of Gravity
7.1 Angular Speed and Angular Acceleration
7.2 Rotational Motion Under Constant Angular Acceleration
7.3 Relations Between Angular and Linear Quantities
7.4 Centripetal Acceleration
7.5 Newtonian Gravitation
Chapter 8 - Rotational Equilibrium and Rotational Dynamics
8.1 Torque *
8.2 Torque and the Two Conditions for Equilibrium *
8.3 The Center of Gravity *
8.4 Examples of Objects in Equilibrium *
8.5 Relationship Between Torque and Angular Acceleration *
8.6 Rotational Kinetic Energy
8.7 Angular Momentum
Chapter 9 - Solids and Fluids
9.1 States of Matter
Department Syllabus for PHYS 1103, Spring 2019 Page 3 of 9 Rev. 1.0, January 28, 2019
Section Textbook Topic
9.2 Density and Pressure *
9.4 Variation of Pressure with Depth *
9.5 Pressure Measurements *
9.6 Buoyant Forces and Archimedes Principle *
9.7 Fluids in Motion *
9.9 Surface Tension, Capillary Action, and Viscous Fluid Flow *
Chapter 10 - Thermal Physics
10.1 Temperature and the Zeroth Law of Thermodynamics *
10.2 Thermometers and Temperature Scales *
10.3 Thermal Expansion of Solids and Liquids *
10.4 Macroscopic Description of an Ideal Gas *
10.5 The Kinetic Theory of Gases *
Chapter 11 - Energy in Thermal Processes
11.1 Heat and Internal Energy *
11.2 Specic Heat *
11.3 Calorimetry (in Lab) *
11.4 Latent Heat and Phase Change *
11.5 Energy Transfer *
Chapter 12 - The Laws of Thermodynamics
12.1 Work in Thermodynamic Processes *
12.2 The First Law of Thermodynamics *
12.3 Thermal Processes
12.4 Heat Engines and the Second Law of Thermodynamics *
12.5 Entropy *
Chapter 13 - Vibrations and Waves
13.1 Hookes Law
13.2 Elastic Potential Energy
13.3 Comparing Simple Harmonic Motion with Uniform Circular Motion
13.4 Position, Velocity, and Acceleration as a Function of Time
13.5 Motion of a Pendulum
13.7 Waves
13.8 Frequency, Amplitude, and Wavelength *
13.9 The Speed of Waves on Strings (in Lab)
13.10 Interference of Waves
13.11 Reection of Waves
Chapter 14 - Sound
14.1 Producing a Sound Wave *
14.2 Characteristics of Sound Waves *
14.3 The Speed of Sound *
14.4 Energy and Intensity of Sound Waves *
14.6 The Doppler Eect *
14.8 Standing Waves (in Lab)
14.9 Forced Vibrations and Resonance *
14.10 Standing Waves in Air Columns *
Department Syllabus for PHYS 1103, Spring 2019 Page 4 of 9 Rev. 1.0, January 28, 2019
The star denotes sections covered in a Medical College Admission Test.
Common Department Requirements for PHYS 1103
While students in each section of PHYS 1103 are assessed by the course instructor, there are general guide-
lines that apply to all sections of PHYS 1103. These include:
All students registered for PHYS 1103 must be registered for a section of the laboratory course PHYS
25% of the course grade is based on the laboratory PHYS 1113. The Department requires that at least
60% of the course grade be based on in-class exams, i.e., homework and out-of-class projects must
constitute no more than 15% of the nal grade.
A passing grade in the laboratory PHYS 1113 is required to pass PHYS 1103.
Withdrawal from PHYS 1103 results in withdrawal from PHYS 1113, and vice versa. Students repeating
PHYS 1103 must also repeat PHYS 1113, and vice versa.
The nal examination constitutes 25% of the course grade. A nal exam assesses Student Learning
Outcomes 15.
Electronic devices are not allowed on any exams, except calculators provided by the Department.
Department Syllabus for PHYS 1103, Spring 2019 Page 5 of 9 Rev. 1.0, January 28, 2019
Department, College and University Expectations and Policies
It is important that students familiarize themselves with a range of policies and guidelines that have been es-
tablished by the Department of Mathematics and Physics, the College of Arts and Sciences, and the University
of New Haven. These are an integral part of the syllabus for this course.
Adding/Dropping a Class
The nal day to drop this course without it appearing on your transcript is discussed on the
Academic Schedules and Registration web page. After the rst week of class, self-service registration will
not be enabled for students to directly add or drop classes. Students should contact the Registrars oce
directly or the Academic Success Center for assistance with adding and dropping courses during this time.
Attendance Regulations
University attendance policy guidelines require that:
Students are expected to attend regularly and promptly all their classes, appointments, and exercises. While the
university recognizes that some absences may occasionally be necessary, these should be held to a minimum.
A maximum of two weeks of absences will be permitted for illness and emergencies. The instructor has the
right to dismiss from class any student who has been absent more than the maximum allowed. A dismissed
student will receive a withdrawal (W) from the course if they are still eligible for a withdrawal per the university
Withdrawal from a Course policy, or a failure (F), if not. A student who is not ocially registered in the course
is not permitted to attend classes or take part in any other course activities. Students absent from any class
meeting are responsible for making up missed assignments and examinations at the discretion of the instructor.
Students are to adhere to the policy attendance policy guidelines outlined in the University Catalog under the
heading, Attendance Regulations, found online in the Undergradaduate Catalog or alternatively found in the
Student Handbook on pp.4849.
Religious Observance Policy for Students
The University of New Haven respects the right of its students to observe religious holidays that may neces-
sitate their absence from class or from other required university-sponsored activities. Students who wish
to observe such holidays should not be penalized for their absence, although in academic courses they are
responsible for making up missed work. The College provides that,
Instructors should try to avoid scheduling exams or quizzes on religious holidays, but where such conicts occur
should provide reasonable accommodations for missed assignment deadlines or exams. If a class, an assign-
ment due date, or exam interferes with the observance of such a religious holiday, it is the students responsibil-
ity to notify their instructor, preferably at the beginning of the term, but otherwise at least two weeks before the
More information about religious observance policies can be found in the Student Handbook on pp.4849
under the heading, Attendance Policies: Religious Observance Policy for Students.
Withdrawal from a Course
Students wishing to withdraw must submit a request for an ocial course withdrawal in writing using the on-
line Course Withdrawal Form, or alternatively complete and hand in the pdf based Course Withdrawal Form.
The nal date to request a withdrawal is listed in the Academic Calendar. This request must be submitted to
the Registrars Oce and signed by the International Oce if you are an international student. The grade of
W will be recorded, but the course will not aect the GPA.
Incomplete Grade Policy
A grade of Incomplete (INC) is given only in special circumstances and indicates that the student has been
given permission by the instructor to complete required course work (with the same instructor) after the end
Please note that it is the responsibility of the student to assure that the required paperwork and documentation is completed by the deadline.
Department Syllabus for PHYS 1103, Spring 2019 Page 6 of 9 Rev. 1.0, January 28, 2019
of the term. In the absence of the instructor a student should contact the Department Chair. Students need
to examine carefully the changed guidelines pertaining to INC grades, specically:
To remove the INC grade, the student must complete all required course work in timely fashion as stipulated by
the instructor but no later than the end of the following term. Fall and intersession course incomplete grades
must be completed no later than the last day of the spring term. Spring and summer course incomplete grades
must be completed no later than the last day of the fall term.
If the course work is not submitted within the allotted time, the INC grade will be changed to an F shortly after
the deadline by the Oce of the University Registrar. Students will be notied via campus email at least two
weeks prior to the change of grade process.
The University policy on incomplete grades is discussed in the Academic Catalog under the heading, Incom-
plete (INC) Grade Policy.
Academic Integrity Policy and Procedures
The University of New Haven expects its students to maintain the highest standards of academic conduct.
Academic dishonesty is not tolerated at the University. To know what it is expected, students are responsible
for reading and understanding the statement regarding academic honesty in the Student Handbook. Specif-
ically, students are required to adhere to the Academic Integrity Policies specied in the Student Handbook,
i.e., on pp.6673.
Please ask your instructor about their expectations regarding permissible or encouraged forms of student
collaboration if there is any confusion about this topic. The Department of Mathematics and Physics fully
adheres to the Academic Integrity Policy:
Academic integrity is a core university value that ensures respect for the academic reputation of the University,
its students, faculty and sta, and the degrees it confers. The University expects that students will conduct
themselves in an honest and ethical manner and respect the intellectual work of others. Please be familiar with
the Universitys policy on Academic Integrity. Please ask about expectations regarding permissible or encouraged
forms of student collaboration if they are unclear.
Coursework Expectations
This course will require signicant in-class and out-of-class commitment from each student. The University
estimates that a student should expect to spend two hours outside of class for each hour they are in a
class. For example, a three credit course would average six [6] hours of additional work outside of class.
Coursework expectations are detailed in the Academic Catalog under the heading, Course Work Expectations.
Please note, that PHYS 1103 is a 4-credit course, and as such requires a total of 12 hours per week invested
in study and homework for the average student.
Commitment to Positive Learning Environment
The University adheres to the philosophy that all community members should enjoy an environment free of
any form of harassment, sexual misconduct, discrimination, or intimate partner violence. If you have been
the victim of sexual misconduct we encourage you to report this. If you report this to a faculty/sta member,
they must notify our colleges Title IX coordinator about the basic facts of the incident (you may choose to
request condentiality from the University). If you encounter sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, sexual
assault, or discrimination based on race, color, religion, age, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation,
gender identity, or disability please contact the Title IX Coordinator, Caroline Koziatek at (203)-932-7479 or Further online information about is available at Title IX.
Reporting Bias Incidents
At the University of New Haven, there is an expectation that all community members are committed to cre-
ating and supporting a climate which promotes civility, mutual respect, and open-mindedness. There also
exists an understanding that with the freedom of expression comes the responsibility to support community
Please note that study guidelines are important, i.e., there is substantial evidence that shows that the pass rates for students in math courses decrease
dramatically as the time spent on outside study falls below 2 hours of homework per credit per week.
Department Syllabus for PHYS 1103, Spring 2019 Page 7 of 9 Rev. 1.0, January 28, 2019
members right to live and work in an environment free from harassment and fear. It is expected that all mem-
bers of the University community will engage in anti-bias behavior and refrain from actions that intimidate,
humiliate, or demean persons or groups or that undermine their security or self-esteem.
If you have witnessed or are the target of a bias-motivated incident, please contact the Oce of the Dean
of Students at 203-932-7432 or Campus Police at 203-932-7014. Further information about this and other
reporting options may be found at Report It.
University Support Services
The University recognizes students often can use some help outside of class and oers academic assistance
through several oces. In addition to discussing any academic issues you may have with your instructor,
advisor, or with the the courses or department coordinator or chair, the University provides these additional
resources for students:
The Center for Academic Success and Advising (CASA)
The Academic Success Center is located in Maxcy 208 for help with your academic studies, or call 203-932-
7234 to set up an appointment.
University Writing Center
The mission of the Writing Center (an expansion of the Writer to Writer peer-tutoring program) is to provide
high-quality tutoring to undergraduate and graduate students as they write for a wide range of purposes and
audiences. Tutors are undergraduate and graduate students and they work with students at any stage in the
writing process; Bring in your assignment, your ideas, and any writing done so far. To make an appointment,
register for an account at
The Math Zone
Please contact the Math Zone if you wish to challenge your Math Placement by taking a Math Challenge Exam
or by taking a Math Post Placement Exam. These are discussed more extensively at http://math.newhaven.
edu/mathphysics/placement_html. The Math Zone also provides a range of tutoring and classroom support
service for students taking development math classes.
The Center for Learning Resources (CLR)
The Center for Learning Resources located in Peterson Library, provides academic content support to the
students of the University of New Haven using metacognitive strategies that help students become aware
of and learn to apply optimal learning processes in the pursuit of creating independent learners CLR tutors
focus sessions on discussions of concepts and processes and typically use external examples to help students
grasp and apply the material.
Accessibility Resources Center
Students with disabilities are encouraged to share, in condence, information about needed specic course
accommodations. The Accessibility Resources Center (ARC) provides comprehensive services and sup-
port that serve to promote educational equity and ensure that students are able to participate in the oppor-
tunities available at the University of New Haven. Accommodations cannot be made without written docu-
mentation from the ARC. The ARC is located on the ground oor in the rear of Sheeld Hall. Sheeld Hall
is located in the Residential Quad area, and can be contacted at 203-932-7332. The ADA/Section 504 Com-
pliance Ocer is Rebecca Johnson,, and can be reached by phone at 203-932-7238.
Information on the ARC can be found at
Department Syllabus for PHYS 1103, Spring 2019 Page 8 of 9 Rev. 1.0, January 28, 2019
Counseling and Psychological Services
The Counseling Center oers a variety of services aimed at helping students resolve personal diculties and
acquire the balance, skills, and knowledge that will enable them to take full advantage of their experience at
the University of New Haven. Information about the, Counseling and Psychological Services, is available
Department Syllabus for PHYS 1103, Spring 2019 Page 9 of 9 Rev. 1.0, January 28, 2019