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SCIENCE & MATHEMATICS DIVISION

Physics

  • Our Faculty (please click on names below to visit course websites, and/or send email)

  • Courses

    Our current courses are listed below.  Because all but Physics 5 are lab courses, the typical class size is around 24 students per section.

    Physics Courses Pre-requisites Fall Semester Spring Semester Summer Term
    3A Math 15 or Math1
    and Math 36 or 37,
    passed with C or better
    day & evening sections    
    3B Physics 3A or 4A and
    Math 16 or Math 2,
    passed with C or better
      day & evening sections  
    4A Math 1
     passed with C or better
    2 daytime sections 2 daytime sections  
    4B Math 2 & Physics 4A
    passed with C or better
    2 daytime sections 2 daytime sections  
    4C Math 3 & Physics 4B
    passed with C or better
    1 daytme section 1 daytime section  
    5 Physics 4B
    passed with C or better
      1 daytime section  
    11 Math 105 Recommended 1 daytime section   1 daytime section


  •  For 2016-2017, Physics 2A/2B will NOT be offered.  Instead we will be transitioning to Physics 3A/3B in Fall and Spring terms respectively, with both daytime and evening sections.  Each is a 4-unit class, with 3 hours of lecture and 3 hours of lab work per week.  These classes will transfer to certain UC and CSU institutions, much as the earlier Physics 2A/2B did, but will satisfy program requirements that expect calculus-level physics.  Please check ASSIST.org for information on whether these courses are accepted in your major if you plan to transfer.  

    Physics 3A has a mathematics pre-requisite of either Math 1 or Math 15, and Math 36 or 37 (passed with a grade of "C" or better)
    Physics 3B
    has a pre-requisite of Physics 3A or Physics 4A, and Math 2 or Math 16 (passed with a grade of "C" or better).

    (In the past years, we offered Physics 2A/B as the algebra/trignonometry courses designed for students in biological sciences, allied health, architecture (for Cal Poly SLO), and other non-engineering majors.   Check ASSIST.org for information on whether these courses were accepted in your major if you plan to transfer. These classes also met for 6 hours a week, 3 for lecture, and 3 for lab.)

  • Physics 4ABC and 5 are designed for engineering and science majors, and for some biological science programs that require their students to take a calculus-based physics.  Physics 4ABC courses typically meet for 3 hours of lecture, 1 hour of recitation/discussion, and 3 hours of lab a week.  Physics 5 meets for 3 hours of lecture each week, and does not have an associated lab.

    We usually offer at least two sections of Physics 4A and 4B in both Autumn and Spring terms. And we usually offer one section of Physics 4C in both terms We usually offer one section a year of Physics 5, in Spring term.  We do not offer Physics 4 or Physics 5 in the summer.

  • We try to offer Physics 11, Descriptive Physics, in Autumn, and in Summer if our budget allows; the class meets for 3 hours of lecture and 3 hours of lab each week.

  • All Physics courses with labs:
    Meet AA/AS Area B requirements;
    Satisfy GE Areas B1 and B3 (CSU Transfer);

    Satisfy IGETC Areas 5a and 5c (UC Transfer)

     
  • 3A - College Physics A    (4 units) Course Outline PDF

     

    Introduction to the major principles of classical mechanics and electricity using pre‑calculus mathematics.  Includes Newtonian mechanics, energy, gravitation, fluids, thermodynamics, vibration waves, and electrostatics.  Prerequisite:  Mathematics 15 or Math 1 with a grade of C or higher).  3 hours lecture, 3 hours laboratory.
     
  • 3B - College Physics B  ( 4 units) Course Outline PDF

     

    Electro-circuits, electromagnetic waves, optics and modern physics.  Prerequisite: Math 16 or Math 2, and Physics 3A (completed with a grade of C or higher).  3 hours lecture, 3 hours laboratory. 

  • 4A - General Physics I      (5 units) Course Outline PDF

     

    Introduction to the principles of Newtonian mechanics using calculus as needed.  Vectors, kinematics, dynamics, energy, momentum, rotation, oscillations and gravitation.   Prerequisite:  Mathematics 1 (completed with a grade of  “C” or higher.  4 hours lecture, 3 hours laboratory. 

  • 4B - General Physics II     (5 units) Course Outline PDF

     

    Electric fields, electric currents, magnetic fields, induced currents, alternating circuits, Maxwell’s equations, Electromagnetic waves.  Prerequisite:  Physics 4A and Mathematics 2 (both completed with a grade of "C" or higher).  4 hours lecture, 3 hours laboratory. 

  • 4C - General Physics III     (5 units) Course Outline PDF

     

    Oscillations, fluids, sound waves, thermodynamics, electromagnetic spectrum, optics including reflection, refraction, diffraction, interference, polarization.  Prerequisite:  Physics 4B and Mathematics 3 (both completed with grade of  “C” or higher).  4 hours lecture,  3 hours laboratory.  


  • 5 - Modern Physics            (3 units) Course Outline PDF

     

    Special relativity and modern physics, including photons, quantum mechanics, atoms, solids, nuclear physics, particle physics and cosmology.  Prerequisite:  Physics 4B (completed with grade of C or higher).  3 hours lecture.  (Note that this is NOT a lab class, and does not correspond to Physics 8D at Las Positas College.)

  • 11 - Descriptive Physics      (4 units) Course Outline PDF

    Meets AA/AS Area B requirements;
    Satisfies GE Areas B1 and B3 (CSU Transfer);

    Satisfies IGETC Areas 5a and 5c (UC Transfer);

     

    Motion, gravitation, heat, light, sound, electricity, magnetism, atoms, and nuclei.  Present day scientific problems and developments such as alternative energy sources, solar energy, nuclear power, lasers, relativity and black holes.  Designed  for non-majors in physical science. Includes an introduction to laboratory, principles and techniques with emphasis on the basic concepts discussed in the class.  May not receive credit if Physics 10 or Physics 10L has been completed. Strongly recommended:  Mathematics 105 or 105L.  3 hours lecture, 3 hours laboratory.  

  • 18 - Preparatory Physics  (Still in our catalog, but not offered in 2016-2017)    (3 units) Course Outline PDF

     

    Basic problem solving techniques in mechanics as foundation for Physics 2A and Physics 4A. 

    Methods and strategies used to solve quantitative Physics problems. Intended for mathematics, engineering, and physics, science students. Emphasis on group problem-solving activities, diversity in problem-solving approaches, and detailed oral and written presentation of solutions. Strongly recommended: Math 36 or Math 37 (completed with a grade of “C” or higher) or equivalent.   3 hours. 

  • Links to older Course Outlines

 



Last updated: 6/7/16 sh

 

 
   
    Phone: (510) 723-6600 | Last updated on 6/8/2016