Course Descriptions & Syllabi

Course Descriptions & Syllabi

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Note: some or all of the courses in the subjects marked as "Transfer" can be used towards a transfer degree: Associate of Science and Arts or Associate of Engineering Science at DACC. Transferability for specific institutions and majors varies. Consult a counselor for this information.

Areas of Study | Physics - 11 courses
PHYS101 Physics-Mechanics/Heat (Fall) – 5.0 hours
Course Description: PHYS 101 is the first semester of a two-semester course in introductory physics for science majors/health career students which discusses kinematics, forces, energy and heat. The class meets for four one-hour lecture periods and one two-hour lab each week.
NotesLabs are required for this course. Each week, students are required to do a lab. All the labs are set by the instructor before the class. Each lab is composed by four different part, pre-lab questions, data taking, calculations, conclusion drawing. Each part uses about 30 minutes, and the total lab time is two hours per week. All the labs are traditional hands-on bench labs. In the laboratory experience, students are expected to use scientific methodology to formulate or evaluate questions, to make systematic observations and measurements, to interpret and analyze data, to draw conclusions, to test the given hypotheses, and to communicate the results orally or in writing. Data interpretation and error analysis uses linear least square fits to get the best results. Critical thinking, technology skills, problem solving skills, communication skills and cultural awareness are embedded in course work. Critical thinking skills are measured by rigorous homework problems including defining the problem, constructing a method for solving, and evaluating the result. Technology skills are embedded in the course, such as using computers with current software, and the tools used in making measurements, such as computer controlled photogate to measure the time interval. Technology skills are assessed by evaluate the accuracy the lab results. Social skills are embedded in the course, such as working in team, defining roles, planning projects, developing oral or written lab reports. Students are expected to assess and to evaluate the effectiveness of teamwork by using a rubric. The class web page is updated every week, which provides supplemental information such as announcements, lecture notes, homework assignment, and students' grades. Pre-lab questions, data taking, data analyzing, calculations, conclusion drawing are embedded in the face-to-face lab periods.
[ T] IAI: P1 900L

PHYS102 Physics-Wave Motion/Electricity/Optics (Spring) – 5.0 hours
Course Description: PHYS 102 is the second semester of a two-semester course in introductory physics for science majors/health career students. The topics covered are: Wave Motion, Electric Charge, Electric Current, Magnetism, Optics, the Nucleus and Quantum Physics. The class meets for four one-hour lecture periods and one two-hour lab each week.
NotesEach week, students are required to do a lab. All labs are set by the instructor prior to class. Each lab is composed of four different parts: pre-lab questions, data taking, calculations, and conclusion drawing. Each part takes about 30 minutes, and the total lab time is two hours per week. All labs are traditional hands-on bench labs. In the laboratory experience, students are expected to use scientific methodology to formulate or evaluate questions, to make systematic observations and measurements, to interpret and analyze data, to draw conclusions, to test the given hypotheses, and to communicate the results orally or in writing. All lab data, interpretation, and error analysis uses linear least square fit to get the best results. Critical thinking, technology skills, problem solving skills, communication skills and cultural awareness are embedded in course work. Critical thinking skills are measured by rigorous homework problems including defining the problem, constructing a method for solution, and evaluating the results. Technology skills are embedded in the course, such as usage of both computers with current software, and tools used in making measurements. Technology skills are assessed by evaluating the accuracy of the lab results. Social skills are embedded in the course, in the form of teamwork, defining roles, planning projects, developing oral or written lab reports. Students are expected to assess and evaluate the effectiveness of teamwork by use of a rubric. The class web page is updated every week, which provides supplemental information such as announcements, lecture notes, homework assignment, and students' grades. Pre-lab questions, data taking, data analyzing, calculations, conclusion drawing are embedded in the face-to-face traditional lab periods.
[ T] IAI: P1 900L

PHYS106 Physics-Mechanics (Spring) – 4.0 hours
Course Description: An introduction for engineering, physics, mathematics, and chemistry students to kinematics, forces, energy, and circular motion. The class consists of lecture, demonstrations, and laboratory. Class meets for 4 hours of lecture and 2 hours of lab per week.
NotesA lab is required for this course. Some sections will require a separate lab, while other sections will include the lab.
[ T] IAI: P2 900L PHY 911

PHYS107 Physics-Heat/Magnetism (Fall) – 4.0 hours
Course Description: PHYS107 is the second course in a three-semester introductory physics sequence for the engineering and science student. The typical student enrolling in this course will later transfer to a four-year college or university to continue their studies toward a baccalaureate degree in a scientific field.
NotesA lab is required for this course. Some sections will require a separate lab, while other sections will include the lab.
[ T] IAI: PHY 912

PHYS108 Physics-Wave Motion/Optics/Modern Physics (Spring) – 4.0 hours
Course Description: The third semester of the three-semester introductory physics sequence for the engineering and science students. The typical student in this course will transfer to a four-year university for a degree in engineering or technology. 3 lecture hours, 2 lab hours.
Notes [ T] IAI: PHY 913

PHYS114 Physical Geology (May Interim) – 4.0 hours
Course Description: An introduction to basic geologic principles from a physical perspective. Includes coverage of minerals and rocks, Earth’s surface processes and landform development, and Earth’s internal processes. Designed for non-science majors and recommended for education majors.
NotesA lab is required for this course. Some sections will require a separate lab, while other sections will include the lab.
[ T] IAI: P1 907L

PHYS141 Physical Science I (Fall and Spring) – 4.0 hours
Course Description: This course emphasizes fundamental principles in the fields of physics and chemistry, the importance of these principles, and their influence on modern life. PHYS 141 is for the non-science major. Class meets 5 hours (3 hours lecture and 2 hours lab) per week and is primarily a lecture-based course with 1 lab weekly.
NotesA lab is required for this course. Some sections will require a separate lab, while other sections will include the lab.
[ T] IAI: P9 900L

PHYS142 Physical Science II (Fall and Spring) – 4.0 hours
Course Description: PHYS 142 is an introductory course in geology, meteorology and astronomy. Emphasis is placed on the basic concepts of these sciences for a better understanding of the earth, atmosphere, and the universe. The course is taught using active and cooperative learning techniques. Students will be expected to work in teams to produce several projects. The course intended for non-science majors. Class consists of three hours of lecture and 2 hours lab or equivalent material delivered online.
NotesA lab is required for this course. Some sections will require a separate lab, while other sections will include the lab. It is helpful if students have some experience with Microsoft Word, PowerPoint and Excel.
[ T] IAI: P9 900L

PHYS143 Introduction to Astronomy (Fall, Spring and Summer) – 3.0 hours
Course Description: This course is a one-semester college level course in introductory astronomy. The course explores a broad range of astronomy topics, concepts, and principles, and presents information in four major areas: the night sky, the life cycle of stars, the universe of galaxies, the history of the universe, and the origin, characteristics, and evolution of the solar system. Throughout the course, special emphasis is placed on the scientific evidence that astronomers use to support their conclusions, and how astronomers have come to know what they know about the universe. Presentations via CD-ROM feature leading practitioners, theoreticians, and academics in the fields of astronomy, planetary science, and astrophysics, who describe and explain celestial objects and events. Also presented via CD-ROM You-Tube, NASA links are scientifically accurate three-dimensional animations and computer graphics, as well as inclusion of the latest images from NASA, JPL, Earth-based telescopes, space observatories, and the Hubble Space Telescope.
Notes [ T] IAI: P1 906

PHYS152 Applied Mechanics-Statics (Fall) – 3.0 hours
Course Description: This course includes the fundamental concepts of general principles of Newtonian mechanics to the statics of particles and rigid bodies in 2-D and 3-D space. It covers mathematical analysis of forces and their equilibrium in structural members, distinguish the forces on a point and distributed forces on a rigid body, calculation at center of friction, gravity, centers of pressure, and moments of inertia, as well as study of virtual work for systems. The free-body diagram approach and force vector analysis methods are used.
NotesCampus Closure Notice:
  • In the event of an extended campus closure due to a pandemic, disaster or other emergency, students are expected to log in to Danville Area Community College’s Blackboard for instructions to continue courses remotely. Should face-to-face instruction be interrupted by restrictions related to a pandemic, natural disaster, or any other emergency, this course will continue with online instruction provided in Blackboard.

The followings are the class activities: Lectures including online videos or invited speakers, Demonstrations, including online laboratory demonstrations. Problem solving and case studies, as well as Writing and Speaking Assignments. Part of the class time and office hours will include question and answer sessions to provide interactivity between students and the instructor.

This course involves a great deal of work on the student's part and would be nearly impossible for the student to master the content without persistently working the problems. As prerequisite, students are expected to possess the knowledge of general physics and calculus. Students are expected to spend an additional 3-5 hours per week outside of the class to complete all assignments.

The course meets 3 hours in class per week. According to the DACC College wise Course Assessment Plan, each course should assess students in the following areas: Communication skills, Critical thinking skills, Technological skills, Cultural Awareness and Social Skills. However, one course cannot achieve all the general education goals and learning outcomes. This course will emphasize on students’ Critical thinking (problem solving) skills and Communication (writing and speaking assignments) skills

To apply strong critical thinking skills in terms of problem solving and communication skills in terms of writing the step by step solutions, students are expected to be able to do a few relatively long problems. Students need to understand the meaning and importance of all given information, the primary unknown for which a solution is desired, any secondary unknowns or relationships that may be required, properly use the techniques required to move toward solution and properly explain the meaning of the solution. If a homework question belongs to complex situations and scenarios, it will be analyzed in cooperative group settings.

Students will communicate meaningfully in writing while presenting homework solutions. Students will translate quantifiable problems into mathematical terms. Sometimes students will construct graphs and charts, interpret them, and draw appropriate conclusions. Due to COVID-19, according to DACC CART Team, this class meets once per week on campus (other times are online), writing and speaking assignments (solving and present a few long homework questions) will be replaced by Power Point Presentation posted on the class website

[ T] IAI: EGR 942

PHYS211 Applied Mechanics-Dynamics (Spring) – 3.0 hours
Course Description: Applied Mechanics-Dynamics is primarily a course in solving problems involving dynamics. The majority of the time is spent on the theoretical analysis of the kinetics of particles and rigid bodies involving force, mass, acceleration, energy, momentum, and impulse, as well as the kinematics of a system of particles and rigid bodies. This theoretical analysis is the solid foundation for students to develop the ability to analyze engineering problems in a logical manner. Applied Mechanics-Dynamics is very important for students in their subsequent study in engineering disciplines and in their future practical engineering applications.
Notes(All the courses information has been uploaded to DACC website. In the event of an extended campus closure due to a pandemic, disaster or other emergency, students are expected to log in to Danville Area Community College’s Blackboard for instructions to continue courses remotely)

This course involves a great deal of work on the student's part and would be nearly impossible for the student to master the content without persistently working the problems. As a prerequisite, students are expected to possess the knowledge of general physics and calculus. Students are expected to spend an additional 3-5 hours per week outside of class to complete all assignments. To achieve the general education goals and learning outcomes, students will communicate meaningfully in writing while presenting information. Students will translate quantifiable problems into mathematical terms and solve these problems using mathematical operations. Students will construct graphs and charts, interpret them, and draw appropriate conclusions. Course activities include:
  1. Speaking Assignments: students will present research individually or in groups using current technology to support the presentation; students will participate in discussions and debates related to the topics in the lessons
  2. Case Studies: complex situations and scenarios will be analyzed in cooperative group settings or as homework assignments
  3. Lectures: this format will include question and answer sessions to provide interactivity between students and the instructor
  4. Videos or Invited Speakers: related topics will provide impetus for discussion
[ T] IAI: EGR 943

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