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Department of Physics, Willamette University


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Willamette University

Physics 221 - Introductory Physics I An introduction to classical mechanics and thermodynamics. This course studies the concepts and techniques required to measure, describe and predict the motion of particles and extended objects. Topics include kinematics of linear motion, forces and Newton's laws, gravitation, momentum, work, energy, rotational motion, angular momentum, torque, fluids, oscillations, temperature, heat, and thermal energy. Syllabus

Physics 222 - Introductory Physics II An introduction to electricity, magnetism, and optics. This course studies the concepts and techniques required to understand interactions between charged particles as well as light as an electromagnetic wave. Topics include electrical force, electric field, electric potential, capacitance, electric current, circuits, magnetic field, inductance, Faraday's law, electromagnetic waves, reflection, refraction, interference, diffraction and polarization. Syllabus

Physics 223 - Modern Physics This course is a survey of the major developments in physics of the 20th century, as well as an introduction to more sophisticated mathematical and laboratory techniques. Topics include special relativity, the quantum nature of light, the wave nature of particles, the Schrödinger equation, atomic physics, molecules, quantum statistical physics, nuclear physics, particle physics and cosmology. Syllabus

Physics 250 - Physical Biology of the Cell This course explores how the insights of physics and mathematics have illuminated the complex phenomena of the cell. We will study the use of quantitative and predictive models to describe biological systems, and discuss the experimental methods that provide the quantitative data required to create and test these models. The course will be structured around a series of case studies involving some of the key players in molecular and cell biology. Syllabus

Physics 396 - Advanced Topics in Experimental Physics The primary goals of ATEP are (1) to expose you to experimental techniques from modern physics and (2) to deepen your understanding of the relationship between experiment and theory. You will be challenged to understand a variety of experimental setups and interpret the data collected from each. We will focus on three skill sets: 1. Oral communication 2. Written communication 3. Experimental technique 4. Researching and gathering information. Syllabus
Physics 495 & 496 - Research Seminar This is the required Senior Year Experience for all Physics majors. Students design and carry out individual research projects under the mentorship of a departmental faculty member. Weekly meetings include seminars, discussions of research methods, peer teaching, and opportunities to practice scientific communication skills. Syllabus

IDS 101 - College Colloquium, Knitting Culture During the last decade, knitting has experienced a remarkable increase in popularity in the U.S. In part, this is because knitting has the ability to play many roles and serve diverse functions. Knitting can be practiced as a craft, and it can also be a medium for art and fashion. Knitting can be used to express political views, and it can also simply be a way to relax. These various facets of knitting are not mutually exclusive. We will come to see knitting as a rich culture. The broad goal for our class is to understand the role and value of knitting through a multidisciplinary treatment of knitting culture. Syllabus

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