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Physics

Briefly defined, physics is the science that tries to understand the laws of nature and the relationship between energy and matter.

It might be more appropriate, however, to define physics as a way of thinking rather than as a profession. The field of physics trains students to take a logical, problem-solving approach in whatever situations they might find themselves. Physics students explore concepts and methods of science that can be applied in many different professional areas and research topics.

Some of the better-known careers for physics majors include academic and industrial research, electronics, alternative energy development, communications or the vital area of medical physics. Physicists are in demand for their analytical skills in many financial, fund management and research roles, in law, as weather forecasters, computer programmers, and as physics and science teachers.

Earn an Associate Degree, Certificate or take a Course or two

Degree Programs

The requirements for a degree in liberal arts and sciences allow you to transfer seamlessly to most four-year colleges and to successfully complete your bachelor's degree in physics without loss of credit or time.

Associate of Arts Degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences
Associate of Arts Degree in Mathematics/Science
Associate of Arts Degree in Mathematics/Science: Chemistry Option
Associate of Arts Degree in General Studies

Courses


PHY*H110
Introduction to Physics
4 cr. Credits

Prerequisite: MAT*H095 or equivalent. MAT*H137 is recommended. The course is designed for the student seeking basic introduction to the principles of physics, and offers firsthand experience on learning in a laboratory. Specific topics covered include: a review of essential arithmetic operations and systems of measurements, linear motion, conservation of energy and linear momentum, Newton's three laws of motion, gas laws, heat, light, electricity, magnetism and atomic theory, as time permits. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory weekly.

PHY*H121
General Physics I
4 cr. Credits

Prerequisite: MAT*H137 or equivalent. Corequisite: MAT*H172. This course is designed for students in technical fields and pre-medicine programs. The course begins with a review of algebra, basic trigonometry and vectors. Topics covered include kinematics, projectile motion, Newton's Laws, energy, momentum, rotational dynamics, heat and thermodynamics, as time allows. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory weekly.

PHY*H122
General Physics II
4 cr. Credits

Prerequisite: Phy*H121. This course is a continuation of PHY*H121. An overview of thermodynamics is given. Topics include waves, harmonic motion and Coulomb's Law. The laws describing electric and magnetic fields are studied and how these laws apply to DC and AC circuits, and the properties of light are presented. The properties of light discussed include reflection, refraction, interference and diffraction. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory weekly.

PHY*H221
Calculus-Based Physics I
4 cr. Credits

Prerequisite: MAT*H254 or equivalent. This course is designed for students in technical fields, mathematics, or the physical sciences. Topics covered: Overview of the calculus necessary for physics, kinematics, Newton's laws, conservation laws, rotational dynamics, harmonic motion, gravitation, fluid mechanics, waves, sound, heat and thermodynamics. The lab portion of the course will concentrate on gathering data, analysis of data, and the discussion of results. The topics covered in lab will be coincident with the topics covered in the course. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory weekly.

PHY*H222
General Physics II
4 cr. Credits

Prerequisite: PHY*H221 or equivalent. This course is designed for students in technical fields, mathematics, or the physical sciences. Topics covered: Overview of the calculus necessary for physics, heat, kinetic theory of gasses and thermodynamics (if not covered in PHY221). Electrostatics, magnetostatics, circuits (DC and AC), electrodynamics, waves and optics. The lab portion of the course will concentrate on gathering data, analysis of data, and the discussion of results. The topics covered in lab will be coincident with the topics covered in the course. Three hours of lecture and three hours of laboratory weekly.