G. Jones (x4697, h. 853-2793,, Office: Science G071  Lab: Science G074)

B. Collett (x4703,, Office: Science G070, Lab: Science G057)

Class Time:

Group Meeting:  MWF 11:00 – 11:50, SCCT G036 or SCCT G029


You will want your intro books, especially a general text like Giancoli or Halliday, Resnick and Walker.  You will also want an error analysis book like Taylor, and your quantum book.


The syllabus will change drastically over the semester and is only meant as a guideline.


This class consists of three experiments.  For each experiment you will write a journal style research paper of approximately 6-12 pages.  After receiving peer and instructor comments, these papers will be resubmitted for a final grade on that experiment.  In addition, each of you will give a solo10 minute talk on one of the first two experiments and each group will present a slightly longer talk on their third experiment.  The final component of the grade will come from class participation and your lab notebook.  

Millikan Experiment


H-D Spectroscopy Experiment


Final Experiment


Talk, peer review, talk questions


Class participation, initiative, independence



The structure and style of a physics paper will be discussed in class, along with strategies for presenting clear concise arguments with figures, equations, and text.  After turning in each paper you will exchange papers with a peer who is not your lab partner.  During a writing conference, you will receive comments from the instructor and exchange comments with your fellow student.  You will then have a chance to submit a revised paper for a final grade.  As in a journal, the revision will be accompanied by a response to the reviewer’s comments.  The paper’s content will be evaluated for correct physics and completeness. The writing will be evaluated for clarity, style, and presentation.  Grades for the paper and resubmission will go down 5% the day after the due date, and 1% per day after that.

Typical grading scheme for individual experiments:

Data quality



Contributions to group discussion






Timeliness (-5% -1%/day)


Submitted paper



Revised paper



Paper total





Our office hours are posted on our doors.  We will adjust these times to accommodate as many of you as possible. Please try to come during these times if possible.  It will be less frustrating for both of us if you hunt for us at times when we can be found and can pay full attention to you.


 6 talks on the first experiment, 6 talks on the second, and 7 talks on the final experiment.  The final talks will be held during the final exam period, Friday, May 11 from 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm


Look to the left of the door to find the entrance code:  4739 6384

Physics 390