PHYS111W: Survey of Physical Science

Survey of Physical Science is a concept-based course primarily designed for students in non-science majors. The goal of the course is to help students understand physical phenomena in various fields of science without the mathematical requirements typically associated with a course in physics or chemistry. Questions such as "Why is the sky blue?" can be answered without rigorous mathematical treatment. The course examines many of the great achievements in the physical sciences and discusses their impact upon the world.

PHYS112W: Physics I

An introduction to the laws of classical physics designed to help students apply basic principles of physics to the world around them. Topics include kinematics and dynamics in one and two dimensions, momentum, Newton's laws of motion, work kinetic and potential energy, rotational motion and the conservation laws of energy and momentum. Additional topics include phases of matter and the properties of fluids.

PHYS113W: Electricity and Electronics

Electricity and Electronics introduces the fundamental laws of electricity and electronics. The course places significant emphasis on laws, units, components, basic circuit analysis, and troubleshooting circuits with DMMs. It also covers the application of these fundamentals to fields such as IT, welding, automotive, and mobile equipment. In the laboratory, students perform hands-on experiments to master basic concepts and troubleshooting techniques.

PHYS114W: Bitcoin, Blockchains, and Energy

Bitcoin, Blockchains and Energy provides a foundation in blockchain technology and its complex interactions with the energy grid.  It is designed for those with little to no experience in the field and starts at the very beginning exploring why and how the first blockchain currency (Bitcoin) was created.  It follows with an analysis of the various interweaving technologies, in addition to the blockchain that make it viable: decentralization, open-source software, encryption, and proof-of-work.  It includes a discussion of energy production and consumption and the environmental impacts that various forms of energy production have on both the planet and our energy grid.  Students also explore how “mining” impacts innovation and energy grid stability.  The course finishes with a practical overview of how all this technology works today and what impacts it might have on the future.

PHYS115W: Technical Physics

Similar in content to PHYS112W but more concept based, Technical Physics is primarily designed for students in non-science majors. The goal of the course is to provide students with an integrated view of the basic concepts of physics, particularly of the way they are applied to mechanical, fluidal, electrical, and thermal systems. A major goal of this course is to help students understand how things work and the similarity and interplay between physical systems and energy conversion.

PHYS118W: The Physics Raspberry Pi

The Physics of Raspberry Pi explains the physics of Raspberry Pi: that's Pi, not Pie. Raspberry Pie is a wonderful dessert; Raspberry Pi is a device used to connect or control just about anything. The course starts with an introduction to the physics of electricity and waves. It proceeds with an explanation of how we use these forces to communicate with machines and ultimately with each other. It concludes by covering the Internet of Things. Topics include basic electricity and circuits, waves and signals, micro-controllers and/or single-board computers, and the use of sensors and other components to communicate. Students may use actual Raspberry Pi's or its cousin, the Arduino. If lucky, they might even find an actual Raspberry Pie.

PHYS120W: Astronomy

For students curious about the universe, Astronomy offers a glimpse into the fundamentals. It does not require a strong background in algebra or trigonometry. Instead, it uses an activity-based approach that teaches students the basic laws of astronomy and explores the locations of planets, stars, and other astronomical units as seen on earth: past, present, or future. Students do not need a telescope. To facilitate learning, the course includes numerous demonstrations and hands-on activities.

PHYS122W: Forensic Science

Forensic Science provides an overview of the broad scope of forensic science, addressing various issues concerning forensic science and the law. The course covers forensic pathology, forensic engineering, cyber technology, forensic science in the laboratory (virtual laboratories included), evaluation of the crime scene, and legal and ethical issues in forensic science.

PHYS215W: Fluid Power

Fluid Power introduces students to fluid power system and their components. It asks students to analyze these systems through mathematical analysis (including conversions and equations) and schematic analysis through diagrams and graphic symbols. The course also provides an overview of common actuators and control systems, emphasizing the operating principles of the various components.