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PHY 142 Spring 2016 Syllabus

Class Meetings

The class group will be the same for lecture and recitations and we will meet in the following times and places.

  • Lectures - Monday, Wednesday, Friday 12:00 PM - 12:53 PM Physics P112
  • Recitation - Tuesday 10:00AM - 11:20 AM Physics P112

Attendance at all class meetings is expected.

Required Materials

The textbook for this course is: Debora Katz; Physics for Scientists and Engineers: Foundations and Connections, Advance Edition. Along with this we will be using the Webassign homework system connected with the book. The textbook and Webassign access are required.

Please refer to Blackboard to get details on how to access Webassign for homeworks for this course.

Course Topics

We will cover Electricity, Magnetism, Electromagnetism and Maxwell's Equations, Waves, Light and Geometric Optics. This is nominally the material from chapter 23 thru chapter 38 of the textbook.


The grades for this course will be determined according to the following breakdown

  • Midterm 1: 17.5%
  • Midterm 2: 17.5%
  • Final Exam: 35%
  • Homework: 20%
  • Recitation Problems: 10%

The distribution of letter grades for the course will be skewed to reflect the fact that this is a challenging course. What this also means is that getting an A in the class will require hard work!


There will be 10 or so sets of problem sets assigned for homework. Homework set will be due by 11:59 PM on a Friday (due dates will be on the course calendar and in Webassign). Some homework sets may be worth more than others. The homework sets are a critical component of learning in the course and I strongly encourage each and everyone of you to take this seriously. You may work in groups, but my advice is that you first attempt the problems individually (since you need to tackle problems by yourselves in the exam!).


There will be 3 lectures a week. I strongly encourage and enjoy questions and active participation during the lectures and demonstrations. It will really help me (and ultimately you) to tune the lecture according to questions received on the fly. Lecture notes will be posted online each weekend.


You must enroll in a PHY134 section of your choice. You must take PHY134 simultaneously with PHY142.


Recitation sessions will take place every Tuesday (except for the first week of class) at 10AM. The recitation sessions will start by briefly reviewing the scope of the problems due on Friday. All students are expected to attend and participate in the recitations. in most of the recitation sessions, a quiz will be administered consisting of a concept-style question to be completed individually. These quizzes will be graded and counted towards the final grade for the course (10%). These problems are meant to help prepare you for the exams, which carry significant weight in the final grade. I note that these quizzes will not require preparation if you have attended the previous three lectures leading up to the specific recitation section.


There will be two midterm exams, one in early March and one in early April. There will be a final exam at the time and location assigned by the Registrar's office during the final exam period. All exams are cumulative. You may bring a single letter size sheet of hand written formulas to all exams.

Academic Integrity

Each student must pursue his or her academic goals honestly and be personally accountable for all submitted work. Representing another person's work as your own is always wrong. Faculty are required to report any suspected instance of academic dishonesty to the Academic Judiciary. For more comprehensive information on academic integrity, including categories of academic dishonesty, please refer to the academic judiciary website at

Electronic Communication

Email to your University email account is an important way of communicating with you for this course. For most students the email address is ‘’, and the account can be accessed here: It is your responsibility to read your email received at this account.

For instructions about how to verify your University email address see this: . You can set up email forwarding using instructions here: . If you choose to forward your University email to another account, we are not responsible for any undeliverable messages.

Religious Observances

See the policy statement regarding religious holidays at Students are expected to notify the course professors by email of their intention to take time out for religious observance. This should be done as soon as possible but definitely before the end of the ‘add/drop’ period. At that time they can discuss with the instructor(s) how they will be able to make up the work covered.

Disability Support Services (DSS)

If you have a physical, psychological, medical, or learning disability that may impact your course work, please contact Disability Support Services, ECC (Educational Communications Center) Building, room 128, (631) 632-6748 or They will determine with you what accommodations are necessary and appropriate. All information and documentation is confidential.

Critical Incident Managment

Stony Brook University expects students to respect the rights, privileges, and property of other people. Faculty are required to report to the Office of Judicial Affairs any disruptive behavior that interrupts their ability to teach, compromises the safety of the learning environment, and/or inhibits students' ability to learn.

phy142kk/syllabus.txt · Last modified: 2016/01/25 17:53 by kkumar
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