Course Outline

Last updated: 22 January 2018
New location where to pick up Weekly Tests.

1. What is this course all about?

What Brock calendar entry says:

Fluids in equilibrium; fluids in motion. Heat and temperature, elements of kinetic theory and the laws of thermodynamics. Geometrical optics, waves and sound.

What do I need to bring into the course?

This course is suitable for students with a high school science background. High school calculus or Grade 12 Physics are not required, but skills in elementary algebra, geometry, and trigonometry are necessary: the course is quantitative in nature. A good scientific calculator is required.

2. Lectures

Instructor: T. Harroun

Lectures: Location: AS204
Times: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 11:00-12:00

Weekly Tests: Location: AS204
Times: Tuesday 11:00-12:00
Note the date of the first weekly test is Thursday, Jan 11.

3. Textbook

The textbook is College Physics, second edition, by Urone, Hinrichs, Dirks, and Sharma, published by OpenStax (Rice University), and available to download for free at Additional student resources are available at

Some people like to have secondary sources to read in case they have difficulty understanding the primary textbook in some places. This is NOT required, but if you would like a secondary source, you can also consult the more advanced Openstax University Physics.

You can also borrow other textbooks from a library, or buy an inexpensive used algebra-based textbook from your favourite used bookstore or internet source. Look for titles such as Physics or College Physics. If your major subject is Physics or a related field, and you would like a more advanced (say, calculus-based) textbook for reference, look for titles that include "for Scientists and Engineers." If you are considering buying a secondary textbook, and are not sure if it will be appropriate for you, send me an email message and I'll advise.

4. Homework

This year, our homework will be on a free, Brock-based system, Webwork . The link from the Sakai page will take you to the correct class. You should use your Brock web identification to login, just as you would for Sakai. Homework will typically be due Sunday night at 11:59pm, and answers available after that for review before the Tuesday test on that same topic.

To make lectures much more interactive, which will also accelerate your learning, we will use the help of REEF software.You can use can use either the app or web interface to participate in class questions and discussions.

5. Academic Integrity

Academic misconduct is a serious offence. The principle of academic integrity, particularly of doing one’s own work, documenting properly (including use of quotation marks, appropriate paraphrasing and referencing/citation), collaborating appropriately, and avoiding misrepresentation, is a core principle in university study. Students should consult Section VII, “Academic Misconduct”, in the “Academic Regulations and University Policies” entry in the Undergraduate Calendar, available here, to view a fuller description of prohibited actions, and the procedures and penalties.

A helpful web site describes Brock's academic integrity policy. Please read it carefully, as all students are expected to understand it and abide by its provisions.

6. 1P93 Laboratories

Labs take place in Room MC H200, during alternate weeks, starting the week of 22 January 2017. The Lab Manual is available for printing from Sakai. Everyone will be doing the same lab during the first week. However, in subsequent weeks, there will be four different labs occuring. To know which lab you are doing each week, check Sakai to find out what group you are in, and determine which lab you are doing. Be sure to read the Lab Outline before attending your first lab. Frank Benko (B210A, is the senior lab demonstrator, and should be contacted for all details.

An integral part of the labs is the use of computer-based data acquisition; you may wish to consult in advance. Under the "Get data" menu selection, select "demo" and click "go"; the demo mode allows you to try the tools without being in the lab.

To prepare for each lab, carefully read the relevant part of the lab manual before you attend lab. To make sure that you are well-prepared for your lab, you must score 100% on the pre-lab questions (there is a link to the questions in the left margin of this web page) before you attend lab; otherwise, you won't be allowed to perform your laboratory experiment.

Your lab report is submitted online via Sakai, and is used to check for plagiarism ; go to Sakai and read the instructions at the course front page for all the detailson performing experiments and submitting lab reports. The due date for submitting your lab report is near midnight six days after you perform the experiment. For example, if you perform your experiment on Thursday, then your lab report is due at 11:00 pm on the following Wednesday. Late submissions (either of the written lab report, or the submissions) automatically generate a zero grade for that lab; i.e. a 100% penalty. If you have a valid medical or compassionate excuse, contact the lab instructor as soon as possible.

7. Sources of help

Office hours: Thad Harroun MC B201, Thursdays 12:30-14:30, or by appointment.

Help Desks:

Daily Help Desk: 11:00-13:45 in MC H200 (1P93 lab room). At least one TA will be there to help.

Library Help Lerning Services Drop-in Science Centre schedule

Weekly Tests:

Tests that have been graded can be picked up when presenting your Brock ID in B230 from TA Hamid Reza Nayeri at the following times:

  • Monday 2:00pm - 5:00pm
  • Tuesday 10:00am - 12:00am
  • Wednesday 2:00pm - 5:00pm
  • Friday 10:00am - 12:00am

Other sources of help

Falling behind in a mathematics or science course leads to extreme difficulties, particularly in a compressed course such as this one. Don't allow yourself to fall behind. Consistent, daily work will help you to succeed in the course.

I encourage you to visit my office whenever you would like to discuss physics. Don't wait until the last moment; make sure you clear up anything that is unclear as soon as possible, as this will make your studies more effective and you will go further in less time.

If you can't come by during my office hours, send me an email message at and we shall set up a suitable time to meet. My office telephone number, in case of emergency, is 905-688-5550 extension 5905.

Doing homework regularly, and in the right way, is essential for understanding physics. Daily work is our mantra. Some students do their homework dishonestly, by simply "googling" the answers. Typically they end up with very high homework scores, but end up failing the final exam, and therefore they fail the course. There are no shortcuts, and no magic formulas for success. It's very simple: Daily, consistent, honest work leads you to success.

8. Grading Scheme

Component PHYS 1P23 PHYS 1P93 Comments
In Class Work (REEF) 5% 4% Points for partcipation and correct answers.
Homework (Webwork) 15% 12% Due 12 pm the evening before next class. Late homework is not counted for credit.
Weekly tests 50% 40% Each test may contain material discussed in earlier weeks..
Final Exam 30% 24% Date TBA; you must pass the final exam (30% or more) to obtain a credit in the course.
Laboratory Work 20% Both attending the lab and submitting a written report (200 to 400 words) is required to complete a lab; completing all labs is required to obtain a credit in the course. You must score 100% on pre-lab questions before the lab to be allowed to attend the lab.

In calculating your overall weekly test scores, your best 9 scores out of the 12 weekly tests will be considered. In this way, if you miss one or two tests because of illness, there is no need to obtain medical documentation. If you miss more than three tests, and you have a very good reason (documentation required), you will be excused from the missed tests with no academic penalty (i.e., you'll get a "no mark"). The weight of excused tests will be distributed proportionally to the other tests. You may pick upgraded Weekly Tests at the time and location listed above. Please pick them up as soon as possible - do not wait until the just before the final.

For both categories of "homework" (that is, the in-class (REEF) work, and the post-lecture (Webwork) homework), your final score will be increased by a factor of 1.1 if it is less than or equal to 83.33%, and your final score will be increased by "half the distance to the goal line" if it is greater than 83.33%. In this way, if you miss the occasional deadline or miss the occasional class (for a very good reason, of course) your grade will not be penalized, and there will be no need to obtain and send me medical documentation for each such unfortunate event. On the other hand, if you are sufficiently ill that you miss a significant portion of the course, then you should certainly contact me to discuss how to proceed.

If you miss the final exam for a very good reason (documentation required), then you will need to write a make-up exam to get a credit in the course, unless your situation is truly extreme. Final exam periods tend to be extremely busy, so there is no guarantee that it will be possible to write a make-up exam soon after the scheduled final exam; therefore, do your very best to stay strong and healthy so that this will not be a concern for you.

If you fail to obtain at least 40% on the final exam, and therefore do not obtain a credit in the course (regardless of your calculated final grade), I am compelled to report a final grade for you that is no higher than 45, according to Registrar's Office policy. In this case, your reported final grade will be either your calculated final grade or 45, whichever is less. In this case, should you desire a credit in the course, you would have to repeat the course.

Withdrawal Deadline

The last date for withdrawal from this course without academic penalty is Friday 10 March 2017.

9. Expectations/Responsibilities

Here is a summary of our expectations of you, which are your responsibilities. You are expected to:

  • attend each scheduled lecture and laboratory session.
  • do your work honestly.
  • attend lectures having prepared in advance by reading relevant parts of the textbook, and completing the pre-lecture homework assignment. You are also expected to bring pencil and paper to lectures so that you are ready to work during the session.
  • attend labs having prepared in advance by reading relevant parts of the lab manual, and having completed the prelab problems.
  • attend each weekly test, with only a non-graphics calculator and writing instruments. Don't bring your formula sheet, as we'll give you one.

To get the most out of the course, work on it a little bit every day. Daily work is key for placing your learning in long-term memory, where it will be readily available to help you to advance your knowledge in second year and beyond. (And, of course, having the course content in long-term memory will help you ace the final exam!)

Prepare for each lecture by reading the textbook, trying some homework problems, and writing down specific questions about points that you find difficult. If you do this, you will be very pleased with the results.

The same kind of advice applies to the laboratories as well. If you attend lab superbly well-prepared, then you will be extremely efficient, you will collect your data successfully, and you will even be able to complete some of your lab report in the lab. You will be especially efficient because you will be able to ask your lab demonstrators good questions while you are in the lab, and this will help you to complete your lab report efficiently.

Remember, it is impossible for your course instructor to effectively cover an entire chapter of the textbook in less than three hours of lectures per week. It is your responsibility to learn the course material. The lectures are there to guide you and assist you in learning the material, but remember whose responsibility it is to actually do the hard work of learning the course material. Showing up to lectures is important, but is not nearly enough to succeed in the course; you must do additional work on your own, and ideally also with your study partner or study group, to really learn the course material well.

10. Course Schedule

Week 2018 Dates Lecture content Test content Test Dates
1 8 Jan.–12 Jan. §16.1 & §5.3 Stress and Strain Intro/Math 11 Jan.
2 15 Jan. –19 Jan. Parts of §7 Work, Energy §16.1 & §5. 16 Jan.
3 22 Jan. –26 Jan. §11 Fluid Statics Parts of §7 23 Jan.
4 29 Jan. –2 Feb. §12 Fluid Dynamics §11 30 Jan.
5 5 Feb. –9 Feb. §13 Temperature, Kinetic Theory §12 6 Feb.
6 12 Feb. –16 Feb. §14 Heat §13 13 Feb.
  19 Feb. –23 Feb. Reading Week    
7 26 Feb. –2 Mar. §15 Thermodynamics Part 1 §14 27 Feb.
8 5 Mar. –10 Mar. §15 Thermodynamics Part 2 §15 6 Mar.
9 12 Mar. –16 Mar. §16 Oscillatory Motion §15 13 Mar.
10 19 Mar. –23 Mar. §17 Sound §16 20 Mar.
11 26 Mar. –30 Mar. §25 & §26 Optics §17 29 Mar.
12 2 Apr. –6 Apr. §27 Wave Optics §25 & §26 3 Apr.