College Physics I (PH201-4A) Course Information

Course Description:
This first term of non-calculus-based Physics will cover linear and planar motion, Newton's Laws, work and energy, gravitation, momentum, rigid body motion, and statics, oscillations and waves, sound, interference phenomena.

Prerequisite: Minimum Grade of C in one of the following courses: PH100, MA106, MA107, or MA125

PH201L and PH201R

  • [4/23] Test 4 score is posted. Class Average:69.3, Top 5 scores: 100, 100, 100, 98, 97. (Score Distribution) General Learning Objectives
    General learning objectives in physics courses are to develop the abilities:
    • to collect and evaluate information with obervation and experiments
    • to understand the natural world through laws and principles of natures
    • to apply quantitative reasoning to the naturally occuring phenomona.

    Specific Learning Objectives:
    • To understand linear and rotational kinematics and dynamics, mechanical equilibrium, work and energy, impulse and momentum, oscillation, waves and interference phenomena.
    • To develope the ability to apply the fundamental physical principles to explain physical phenomena. You should be able to:
      1. read a description of the problem and translate nonscientific prose into the language of physics
      2. set up figures or diagrams to assist in analyzing the problem
      3. identify key physical principles that leads to a solution
      4. find a relationship between the given information and quantities to be determined.
      5. carry out mathematical operations to reach a solution.
    • To gain the ability to collect, evaluate and communicate scientific information through laboratory experiments.

    Expected Outcomes: Students successfully completing this course will demonstrate knowledge of fundamental concepts in mechanics and the ability to apply this knowledge and mathematical skills in algebra, trigonometry and vectors for quantitative reasoning and problem solving.

    Day and Time: Lecture: Tue. & Thu., 3:30PM-4:45PM
    Room: CH301
    Textbook: Cutnell and Johnson: Physics, 7th Ed. (Wiley, 2007)
    Instructor: Dr. Ryoichi Kawai
    phone: (205) 934-3931
    Office Hour: Wed. 12:30-1:30pm
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    Four midterm exams and one comprehensive final exam will be given. No textbook nor notebook is allowed in the exams. One letter-size hand-written information sheet is allowed. You can write down mathematical formulae, laws and priciples of physics, physical formulae, physical contants, and other concepts related to physics and mathematics on the information sheet. However, you are not allowed to write solutions of any problems including homework problems, example problems in textbook. A calculator may be used. If you could not take an exem due to unforeseen problems, a make-up exam may be given. You can make up only one exam. You must notify the instructor within a day or two of the exam day with a written reason for the make-up.

    Homework are electronically processed via an internet website: WebAssign (

    In order to solve homework problems, you need internet access and a web browser. Homework due is strictly enforced by computer. You are strongly advised to start homework as soon as a set is assigned.

    Course grade is determined based on the four midterm exam scores (10 pts each), final exam (25 pts), Lab (10 pts), Homework (15 pts), and Recitation (10 pts) Letter grades are determined based on total score (Max=100 pts). Table shows a general guideline of the letter grades. The borderlines may be adjusted depending on the class average and standard deviation.
    Letter GradeTotal Score
    A > = 90
    B > = 80
    C > = 70
    D > = 60
    F < 60

    Last day to Witdraw from course with "W": March 6, 2009