• Class Number 2749
  • Term Code 2930
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
  • COURSE CONVENER
    • Dr John Debs
  • LECTURER
    • Dr John Debs
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 25/02/2019
  • Class End Date 31/05/2019
  • Census Date 31/03/2019
  • Last Date to Enrol 04/03/2019
SELT Survey Results

Nationally recognised with two teaching awards, Foundations of Physics aims to teach you to “think like a physicist!” A course for anyone who wants to get a solid foundation in basic-physics concepts, or needs to catchup before entering into a major. It will also teach you skills and an approach to problem solving that you will take forward in your life.
The course offers a unique 'hands on' approach to learning physics. You'll get the background material for each week in a short 1 hour theory lecture, and then have the opportunity, over the course of an afternoon, to put that theory into practice. You'll work in small teams to build, test and analyse physics experiments directly relevant to the material you're learning. Lab manuals and instructions are forbidden! Just like a real researcher.
We introduce students to the key concepts in physics in the areas of mechanics, electricity and magnetism. It is an algebra-based course suitable for those who wish to undertake some physics but do not have a strong mathematical background, and great for those keen on entering graduate medicine via the GAMSAT.
If you've ever wanted to get a real taste of what physics is all about, this is the course for you.
The course is taught by young, enthusiastic and experienced teachers with research interests in quantum mechanics (atom lasers and precision measurement), advanced materials engineering, laser science, and more!

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

On satisfying the requirements of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

1. Understand the fundamental principles of classical mechanics, electric and magnetic fields and simple electrical circuits.

2. Be able to apply these principles to the solution of problems and to the conduct of experiments.

3. Have a basic understanding of uncertainty in the context of physics, and how to handle it.

4. Have basic laboratory skills including equipment skills, data gathering, record keeping, data analysis, experiment design, and presentation.

We STRONGLY recommend keeping a good lab notebook for the assessment tasks. Take pictures and videos on your phones, and keep a good record to aid yourself in completing the assessment tasks. See the wattle resources page for more ideas and information. 

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • Videos: written feedback related to marking rubric for each submission within 7 business days of submission.
  • Written assignments: written feedback within 2 weeks on turn it in system, and related to rubric.
  • Online weekly homework: correct answers and solutions to a subset of questions available through webassign system after homework due date. Ability to repeat assignment indefinitely.
  • Mid-term: usually a review session covering common issues will be run. Date TBA during semester.

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Other Information

Please note, that where there are multiple assessment tasks of the same type, e.g weekly quizzes, a date range is used in the Assessment Summary. The first date is the approximate due date of the first task, the return date is the approximate return date for the final task. Further information is provided in the assessment section of the class summary, and details are provided on the course wattle site

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Weeks 1-12: The course will be divided into a "Mechanics" section before the mid-semester break, and an "Electricity and Magnetism" section after the mid-term break. Content and concepts will go up on Wattle each week as we progress through the course. Every week, the course is centred around a 3-4 hour workshop/lab session. This is where you get your hands dirty and apply concepts introduced in a single lecture each week. The schedule is below. Compulsory Timetable Items Studio Lab session is considered compulsory every week that it runs (not all weeks). Monday and sometimes Wednesday (see weekly wattle blocks) @ 5 - 6 pm: Weekly concepts lecture Tuesday 3 - 6 pm: Workshop/lab session Tutorials will be drop-in style in the physics drop-in centre across the hall from the studio. We will be there and you can ask question about WebAssign, or the course. Thursday mornings at 9am. Recommended Timetable Items While not compulsory, you will be at a disadvantage if you miss these sessions: Weekly lecture (occasionally two lectures, pending public holidays). Weekly drop-in tutorial for help with assessments. There are a total of 9-10 lab sessions over the semester. Participation in these sessions will be graded via 7 assessment tasks over the semester. There are weekly online homework problems. There are two exams, one mid-term and one final.

Tutorial Registration

Tutorials will be drop-in style in the physics drop-in centre across the hall from the studio. We will be there and you can ask question about WebAssign, or the course. Thursday mornings at 9am. 

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Weekly Homework 30 % 25/02/2019 04/07/2019 1,2,3
Lab/Workshop Sessions: 4 Video summaries, 20% total (5% each) 20 % 25/02/2019 04/07/2019 1,2,3,4
Lab/Workshop Log Book review 5% total 5 % 25/02/2019 04/07/2019 1,2,3,4
Formal lab report or physics essay #1 7 % 12/04/2019 28/04/2019 1,2,3,4
Formal lab report or physics essay #2 7 % 31/05/2019 16/06/2019 1,2,3,4
Mid Term Exam 10 % 01/04/2019 26/04/2019 1,2,3
Final Exam 20 % 06/06/2019 04/07/2019 1,2,3

Policies

ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.

Participation

Participation in lab/worshop sessions will be graded via 7 assessment tasks over the semester.

Examination(s)


Please check ANU Exam Timetables or Wattle for final dates, times and location as appropriate

Assessment Task 1

Value: 30 %
Due Date: 25/02/2019
Return of Assessment: 04/07/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Weekly Homework

Weekly homework assignments are run using the WebAssign homework system. This will become available week 1. Instructions for logging in can be found on Wattle. Assignments are due every week and will be returned the following week.

Each week, there will be 3 parts.

  •  Part A is worth 60% and you get 5 attempts at questions.
  •  Part B is worth 20% and you get 2 attempts at questions.
  •  Part C is worth 20% and you get 1 attempt at questions. 

The parts get progressively harder. Getting most of Part A correct is a Pass/Credit level, Most of B will be Credit/Distinction level, and Most of C will be a High Distinction level. 

They will open after the week's lecture and be due 1 week later.

Extensions will only be granted if they are applied for well before the close, and for good reason. Email john.debs@anu.edu.au stating how long an extension you need and why.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 25/02/2019
Return of Assessment: 04/07/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Lab/Workshop Sessions: 4 Video summaries, 20% total (5% each)

Each week, we will pick a group of students at Random who will be required to submit a Video Summary of their lab, of no longer than 5 mins length. These will be graded by the instructors according to the criteria as outlined on Wattle. Please see the Lab video resources page for more details and resources on making these videos. Every student will submit 4 videos over the semester, which means you will not submit a video every week. 

Assessment Task 3

Value: 5 %
Due Date: 25/02/2019
Return of Assessment: 04/07/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Lab/Workshop Log Book review 5% total

Every student is required to keep a good lab log book. We recommend a bound book so you may sketch/easily take notes for future reference (a pad or loose paper will not be accepted). Digital logbooks are fine, especially on tablets. A computer based logbook might be disadvantageous.

Log books should keep track of:

  • Date/day and time.
  • What you're doing, and why.
  • What you find, with measured values (including measurement uncertainty).
  • Diagrams of setups etc.
  • Failures as much as successes.

You will be required to have your book signed off at EACH lab, and we will grade you as pass/fail based on the above points. You must have a single logbook for PHYS1001 and use it each week. If you forget to have your book signed off, we will not assign a pass later. Total grade will be calculated as a percentage of passes over the semester.

Assessment Task 4

Value: 7 %
Due Date: 12/04/2019
Return of Assessment: 28/04/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Formal lab report or physics essay #1

Value: 7.5%


One of these is due per term. You may choose any of the labs, or an experiment you conduct at home, to write a formal report on. Alternatively, you may pick an essay argument, that is backed up by physics. Something of relevance in the world. For an essay we expect around 1500 words. For the report, we suggest the following headings (I) Abstract, (II) Introduction, (III) Experimental Method, (IV) Results and Discussion, (V) Conclusion, with no strict word limit (although communication is a marking criteria, and being concise is important). 

We'll be marking both the reports/essays on according to: 

  • correct physics (60%)
  • Have you incorporated the correct physics, and the right amount? Can you back up results/analysis or arguments?
  • critical thinking/reasoning (25%)
  • Correct analysis and interpretation of results.
  • For essays, reasoning based on science and critical arguments.
  • Good communication (15%)
  • Clear, concise English, free of jargon. If you cannot communicate effectively, this will likely effect other parts of the rubric. The Academic skills centre can help you improve your writing.

A High Distinction will only be given in the case that we really find your work exceptional.

Assessment Task 5

Value: 7 %
Due Date: 31/05/2019
Return of Assessment: 16/06/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Formal lab report or physics essay #2

Value: 7.5%


One of these is due per term. You may choose any of the labs, or an experiment you conduct at home, to write a formal report on. Alternatively, you may pick an essay argument, that is backed up by physics. Something of relevance in the world. For an essay we expect around 1500 words. For the report, we suggest the following headings (I) Abstract, (II) Introduction, (III) Experimental Method, (IV) Results and Discussion, (V) Conclusion, with no strict word limit (although communication is a marking criteria, and being concise is important). 

We'll be marking both the reports/essays on according to: 

  • correct physics (60%)
  • Have you incorporated the correct physics, and the right amount? Can you back up results/analysis or arguments?
  • critical thinking/reasoning (25%)
  • Correct analysis and interpretation of results.
  • For essays, reasoning based on science and critical arguments.
  • Good communication (15%)
  • Clear, concise English, free of jargon. If you cannot communicate effectively, this will likely effect other parts of the rubric. The Academic skills centre can help you improve your writing.

A High Distinction will only be given in the case that we really find your work exceptional.

Assessment Task 6

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 01/04/2019
Return of Assessment: 26/04/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Mid Term Exam

Midterm Exam (10%) - Date/location to be determined 

Assessment Task 7

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 06/06/2019
Return of Assessment: 04/07/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

Final Exam

Final Exam (20%) - Date/location to be determined

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) as submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

No submission of online weekly assessment tasks without an extension after the due date will be permitted. If an assessment task is not submitted by the due date, a mark of 0 will be awarded.


Late submission of video and written tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

Weekly assignments will be returned the week after submission.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dr John Debs
58420
John.Debs@anu.edu.au

Research Interests


Curriculum And Pedagogy

  • Other Education
  • Lasers And Quantum Electronics
  • Atomic And Molecular Physics
  • Degenerate Quantum Gases And Atom Optics
  • Classical And Physical Optics
  • Quantum Optics

Dr John Debs

Friday 10:00 11:00
Dr John Debs
58420
John.Debs@anu.edu.au

Research Interests


Dr John Debs

Friday 10:00 11:00

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions