Teaching Note of "Fundamental Physics Laboratory"


  • “College Physics” was a huge challenge for me. At last, it turned out to be a wonderful success experience, to my understand, a very important one in my life. Here, I would like to say sincerely: Thank you all, my dear students. Again, “Fundamental Physics Laboratory” is a challenge for me. However, I am very glad to accept this. This time, I have at least a cooperation partner, Mrs. Su and much support of my colleges. I do hope that we, together with you, all the participting students, will have a happy end. Let's wait and expect what this “happy end” will be.
  • I plan to write here some teaching note. Limited by several reasons, I am not sure whether I can manage to write all the notes in English. If unfortunately, I have to write some in Chinese, I beg your forgiveness.
  • Of course, I will be very thankful to any comments and interplay from you all. — 乐永康 2009/03/14 00:34

Reading Note

Although we don't often articulate them, most physics instructors have expectation-related goals for their students. In our university physics course for engineers and other scientists, we try to get students to make connections, understand the limitations and conditions on the applicability of equations, build their physical intuition, bring their personal experience to bear on their problem solving, and see connections between classroom physics and the real world. We refer to this kind of learning goal—a goal not listed in the course's syllabus or the textbook's table of contents—as part of the course's “hidden curriculum”. We are frustrated by the tendency many students have to seek “efficiency”—to achieve a satisfactory grade with the least possible effort—often with a severe unnoticed penalty on how much they learn. They may spend a large amount of time memorizing long lists of uninterpreted facts or performing algorithmic solutions to large numbers of problems without giving them any thought or trying to make sense of them. Although some students consider this efficient, it is only efficient in the short term. The knowledge thus gained is superficial, situation dependent, and quickly forgotten.

——Taken From: “Student expectations in introductory physics” by Edward F. Redish, Jeffery M. Saul, and Richard N. Steinberg. Citation: American Journal of Physics 66, 212 (1998); doi: 10.1119/1.18847

VIP Words

  • In science, there is only physics. All the rest is stamp collecting.— Ernest Rutherford
  • Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination.— Max Plank
  • When you can measure what you are speaking about and express it in numbers, you konw something about it; but when you cannot measure it, when you cannot express it in numbers, your knowledge is of a meager and unsatisfactory kind. — Lord Kelvin

Why we make experimental measurements

—Adopted from “Physics Laboratory Experiments5th Edition Jerry D. Wilson

  As Lord Kelvin so aptly expressed(See above), we measure things to know something about them–So that we can describe objects and understand phenomena. Experimental measurement is the cornerstone of the scientifc method, which holds that no theory or model of nature is tenable unless the results it predicts are in accord with experiment.

  The main purpose of an introductory physics laboratory is to provide “hand-on” experience of various physical principles. In so doing, one becomes familiar with laboratory equipment and procedures and with the scientific method.

For 2011

March 18th

  • Today, the lab goes quite efficiently to the end. All students seem to be well prepared. I do hope they have learned some from the labs: such as how to use a vernier calipers(游标卡尺). On the other hand, I think there will be quite many problems in the lab report, as can be seen from the homework. Hope to see the students comments.— 乐永康 2011/03/19 00:02


  • Thanks Prof. Le! — 牛康衛 2009/03/19 19:19
  • Hope we grow up together in Physics! Yeah! — 郑宝迎 2009/03/22 09:59
  • Thank you for your visit and comments. I am sure, every one will be rewarded for his effort. — 乐永康 2009/03/23 19:37
home/xiaole/fpl_note.txt · 最后更改: 2014/02/19 15:17 由 xiaole
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