Approved by University Studies Sub-Committee.  A2C2 action pending.



University Studies Course Approval

Department or Program:_Physics_______________________________

Course Number: ___223______

Course Title: University Physics III______________________________

Catalog Description: A continuation of PHYS 222, covering light, relativity, nuclear physics and special topics in modern physics. Lecture and laboratory. Prerequisite: PHYS 222. Offered yearly.

This is an existing course that has previously been approved by A2C2 __X__.


This is a new course proposal __ __. (If this is a new course proposal, the WSU Curriculum Approval Form must also be completed as in the process prescribed by WSU Regulation 3-4.)

Department Contact Person for this course: Dr. Richard Shields




The proposed course is designed to satisfy the requirements in (select one area only):

Course Requirements

A. Basic Skills: (October 4, 2000)

______ 1. College Reading and Writing

______ 2. Oral Communication

______ 3. Mathematics

______ 4. Physical Development and Wellness

B. Arts & Sciences Core: (November 1, 2000)

______ 1. Humanities

______ 2. Natural Science

______ 3. Social Science

______ 4. Fine & Performing Arts


C. Unity and Diversity: (January 17, 2001)

___X_ 1. Critical Analysis

_____ 2. Science and Social Policy

______ 3. a. Global Perspectives

______ b. Multicultural Perspectives

______ 4. a. Contemporary Citizenship

______ b. Democratic Institutions

Flagged Courses: (February 14, 2001)

______ 1. Writing

______ 2. Oral

______ 3. a. Mathematics/ Statistics

______ b. Critical Analysis


Approval/Disapproval Recommendations

Department Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved ____Date _____

Chairperson Signature_______________________ Date______


Dean's Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved ____* Date _______

Dean's Signature_______________________ Date______

*In the case of a Dean's recommendation to disapprove a proposal a written rationale for the recommendation to disapprove shall be provided to USS


USS Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

University Studies Director's Signature__________________ Date______


A2C2 Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved_____ Date:______

A2C2 Chairperson Signature_______________________ Date______

Faculty Senate Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

FA President's Signature_______________________ Date______

Academic Vice President's

Recommendation: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

VP's Signature_______________________ Date______

President's Decision: Approved_____ Disapproved____ Date:______

President's Signature_______________________ Date______



University Studies

Unity and Diversity

Critical Analysis

1. Outcomes for Physics 223, University Physics III

These courses must include requirements and learning activities that promote students’ abilities to....

a. evaluate the validity and reliability of information:

This outcome will mainly be satisfied by the development by designing their own lab experiments. The students will work in groups to design an experiment, write up instructions for other students to do the experiment, have other students do the experiment and give comments, and then analyze the experimental results and account for any sources of error. Students will have to critically evaluate what the instruments are measuring and how reliable are those measurements. Calibrations and testing of the equipment will be needed. Also students will have to write up the procedure so other students can understand the experiment.

b. analyze modes of thought, expressive works, arguments, explanations, or theories;

Physics 223 covers the rest of the topics of classical physics that was started in Physics 221 and 222. Then topics of modern physics are covered which demonstrate that classical physics was in error in the realm of velocities close to speed of light and in the microscopic world of the atom. This serves an example of the experimental proof that was needed to overthrow the highly successful classical theory and serve an example of the burden of proof needed for present day theories.

c. recognize possible inadequacies or biases in the evidence given to support arguments or conclusions; and

The case history of the development of quantum mechanics is an example of biases in a theory. The plum pudding model of the atom was widely accepted as the correct model because highly respected physicists supported the theory . It took a extremely strong experimental evidence before the theory was recognized as incorrect.

d. advance and support claims

The student's design projects will be selected by the instructor and will be on topics that the answers can not easily be looked up in a book. Students will have to develop their own theory for the experiment and then defend the theory to other students as well as the instructor. This models what scientists have to do when they do research.

2. Course requirements and learning activities

Students are required to take weekly quizzes, hour exams, tests, and a comprehensive final. Weekly lab reports are also due. Successful students soon learn that they need to be active in the learning process. They need to come to class, ask questions, due the homework, attend labs, and turn in lab reports. If physics was an inert body of knowledge that students need to memorize, then they could be successful in a passive role. However, problem solving requires student to be active learners and involved in their own learning.

3. Course Description

Physics 223 University Physics III Syllabus Spring, 2001

Text: Text: Physics for Scientists and Engineers, 5th Edition, by Serway and Beichner

University Studies Course - Critical Analysis

Statement of University Studies Goals

Critical Analysis courses in the University Studies program are devoted to teaching critical thinking or analytic problem-solving skills. These skills include the ability to identify sound arguments and distinguish them from fallacious ones. The objective of these courses to develop students’ ability to effectively use the process of critical analysis. Disciplinary examples should be selected to support the development of critical analysis skills.

These courses must include requirements and learning activities that promote students’ abilities to....

a. evaluate the validity and reliability of information:

b. analyze modes of thought, expressive works, arguments, explanations, or theories;

c. recognize possible inadequacies or biases in the evidence given to support arguments or conclusions; and

d. advance and support claims

This course is a continuation of Phys. 222. Course prerequisites are completion of Phys. 222 and integral calculus. Class attendance is expected in both lecture and lab. During the lecture concepts will be discussed, problems will be worked and frequent single problem quizzes will be given. Problem sets will be assigned, collected, graded and returned.

The main topics covered this semester are waves, sound, light, relativity and modern physics. At the end of the semester you should have an understanding of the theory of waves, both sound waves and light waves. You should understand how waves transfer energy and how waves interfere with each other. You should understand lenses and mirrors and how images are formed by them. In modern physics, the particle nature of light and the wave nature of particles will be explored. The theory of relativity and quantum mechanics will be discussed. You should understand how relativity and quantum mechanics explain phenomena at speed close to speed of light and the microscopic world of the atom. Also you should understand the criteria used in analyzing a new theory and what proof is necessary to replace the very successful theory of classical mechanics. (Objectives a, b, c, d)

The laboratory is divided into two types of labs. The first is a traditional lab. The instructor has written out the lab assignment and the whole class does the assignment at one time. You know the lab works because the instructor, the manufacturer of the equipment, and the author of the textbook says so. However, for a scientist researching new areas, there are no such guarantees. In the lab schedule, there are three design projects scheduled. This is a time to apply the physics you have learned. The instructor will choose design projects from topics in physics 221, 222, or 223. You are to research the topic, design an experiment to measure a parameter that can be compared to a known quantity, write up an laboratory exercise, and have your classmate do the experiment and give you feedback on how to improve the experiment and your write-up. You will need to apply all your critical analysis skills to be successful. (Objectives a, b, c, d)


Proposed Schedule

Jan. 12 - 14 Chapter 16 Wave Motion

19 - 21 Chapter 17 Sound Waves

24 - 26 Chapter 18 Superposition and Standing Waves

Jan. 28 - Feb. 2 Chapter 34 Electromagnetic Waves

Feb. 4 - 7 Chapter 35 The Nature of Light


Feb. 11 - 16 Chapter 36 Geometric Optics

Feb. 18 February Break

21 - 23 Chapter 37 Interference of Light Waves

25 - Mar. 1 Chapter 38 Diffraction and Polarization


Mar. 5 - 19 Semester Break

20 - 22 Chapter 39 Relativity

24 - 27 Chapter 40 Introduction to Quantum Physics

Mar. 29 - Apr. 3 Chapter 41 Quantum Mechanics

Apr. 5 - 10 Chapter 42 Atomic Physics


Apr. 14 - 19 Chapter 43 Molecules and Solids

21 - 24 Chapter 44 Nuclear Structure

Apr. 26 - May 1 Chapter 45 Nuclear Fission and Fusion

May 3 - 5 Chapter 46 Particle Physics and Cosmology



1. Standing Wave on a String

2. Resonance Air Columns

3. Dispersion of Light

4. Spherical Lenses

5. Diffraction

6. Design Project 1 (two weeks)

7. Hydrogen Spectrum

8. Design Project 2 (two weeks)

9. Half Life

10. Design Project 3 (two weeks)



Each Exam - 100 pts 300 pts

Final Exam - 150 150

Lab Grade - 50 50

Design Problems - 50 50

Problem Set Grade - 50 50

Quizzes - 100 100

TOTAL 700 pts