This is a laboratory class where we investigate some classic physics experiments. The experiments to choose from are:
The students generate a short report for each experiment performed where emphasis is placed on the analysis of the experimental errors and limitations. The students also prepare one oral report which provides presentation experience.
This is a survey of the applications of quantum mechanics to many physical systems. The course cover the following:
This class includes discussions of the impact of these topics on current events and modern life (nuclear weapons proliferation, nuclear energy, quantum electronic devices, ect.). The students also produce a paper describing the impact of quantum physics on either modern life, current events, or future technology. The point of this is to show how relevant quantum mechanics is to our lives.
This approach of this class is different than other classes encounted by the students. Rather than following one topic or thread leading to a increasing level of sophistication and understanding, this class shows how readily quantum mechanics can be applied to many widely varied systems. Rules of thumb and estimates are used much more often than detailed exact calculations, which is great training for life as a professional physicist.