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Last updated: Tue Nov 20 02:59:15 pm 2012 (EST) by Tibor Nagy

PHY 184 Fall 2012

Michigan State University


Course Coordinator: Reinhard Schwienhorst, Tibor Nagy
Instructor: Kirsten Tollefson
Teaching Assistant: Ian Howard Warn, Michael Cory Lenard, Thomas Allen Quinn, Tibor F Nagy 9

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Instructor Information

Section 001: Tibor Nagy
Office: BPS 1253, Phone: (517) 884-5508
Email: nagy_t@pa.msu.edu or nagytibo@msu.edu, Web: http://www.pa.msu.edu/~nagy_t/

Section 002: Reinhard Schwienhorst
Office: BPS 3241, Phone: (517) 884-5566
Email: schwier@msu.edu, Web: http://www.pa.msu.edu/~schwier/
Office hours: Before/after class, We 3pm-4pm, and by appointment.

Course Description

PHY 184B: calculus-based physics course, for students majoring in engineering or physical sciences. Topics include: electrostatics, direct circuits, magnetostatics, induction, alternating circuits, electromagnetic waves, optics, special relativity.


(PHY 183 or PHY 193A or PHY 183B or PHY 193H or LBS 164) and MTH 133.

Class Hours

Section 001: Mo, Tu, We, Th from 4:10 to 5:00 PM in room BPS 1410.
Section 002: Mo, Tu, We, Th from 5:10 to 6:00 PM in room BPS 1410.

Helproom Hours

Physics Learning Center, room BPS 1248.

Teaching Assistants:
Michael Lenard (lenardmi@msu.edu): Monday 3 to 5 PM, Friday 11 AM to 3 PM,
Thomas Quinn (quinnth5@msu.edu): Thursday 6 to 9 PM, Friday 3 to 6 PM,
Ian Warn (warnian@msu.edu): Thursday, 3 to 6 PM, Friday 6 to 9 PM.

Exam Information

There will be twelve 45-minute exams every week and one 2-hour final exam. The weekly exams will be given in class every* Monday and will cover the material presented in the previous week (*- there will not be an exam on the Monday immediately after Thanksgiving). There will be no make-ups for missing a weekly exam. We realize sometimes stuff happens that is beyond your control, with this in mind we will drop your lowest TWO exam scores when calculating your final grade.

All the exams are closed book exams. However, you are permitted to use a single 8-inch by 5-inch card (or smaller) of handwritten notes and equations. You may use both sides of the note card.

Each weekly exam will have a correction exam assigned as a homework assignment in LON-CAPA. 30% of the positive difference between the correction exam and the in-class exam will be added to your in-class exam score as a bonus. As such, the correction exam homework assignment can only add points to your midterm exam score.

Final Exam: Thursday, December 13, 8-10 PM. Location: ANH 1281, combined final exam for both sections. The final exam is closed book. However, you are permitted to use TWO 8.5-inch by 11-inch sheets of paper (or smaller) of handwritten notes and equations. You may use both sides of these sheets. The final exam cannot be dropped. The final exam doesn't have correction.

Bring a calculator with fresh batteries, two sharp #2 (HB) pencils, an eraser and your picture ID to each exam.


There are thirteen homework sets. The homework sets are always due on Sunday evenings at 11:59 PM.

There will be twelve 45-minute exams on Mondays in the lecture hours. Each of the associated correction exams will be due on Wednesday evenings at 11:59 PM.

Students with Disabilities: MSU is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Requests for accommodations by persons with disabilities may be made by contacting the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities at 517-884-RCPD or on the web at rcpd.msu.edu. Once your eligibility for an accommodation has been determined, you will be issued a verified individual services accommodation (VISA) form. Please present this form to your instructor at the start of the term or no later than the end of the second week of class. Requests received after this date may not be honored.

Grading Information

Percent weights:
Homework: 25%,
Weekly Exams: 50%,
Final Exam: 25%,
Clicker Questions: 5%.

Clicker questions: clicker questions will be given in class. These questions will count as 5% extra credit. No make-ups are available for clicker questions.

The guaranteed scale below is based on the total percentage of points.

Grading scale:
4.0 >= 94%
3.5 >= 86%
3.0 >= 78%
2.5 >= 70%
2.0 >= 62%
1.5 >= 54%
1.0 >= 46%
0.0 < 46%.

This grading scale might be lowered, but it will not be raised.


Wk | HW is due | Reading assignment
01 | Sep 02 Su | Syllabus, Homework set #0
02 | Sep 09 Su | HW 01: Ch 21: Electrostatics
03 | Sep 16 Su | HW 02: Ch 22: Electric Fields and Gauss's Law
04 | Sep 23 Su | HW 03: Ch 23: Electric Potential
05 | Sep 30 Su | HW 04: Ch 24: Capacitors
06 | Oct 07 Su | HW 05: Ch 25: Current and Resistance
07 | Oct 14 Su | HW 06: Ch 26: DC Circuits
08 | Oct 21 Su | HW 07: Ch 27: Magnetism, 28: Magnetic Fields
09 | Oct 28 Su | HW 08: Ch 29: Electromagnetic Induction
10 | Nov 04 Su | HW 09: Ch 30: EM Oscillations and Currents
11 | Nov 11 Su | HW 10: Ch 31: EM Waves
12 | Nov 18 Su | HW 11: Ch 32: Geom. Optics, Ch 33: Optical Instr.
13 | Nov 26 Mo | Mo: NO exam; HW 12: Ch 34: Wave Optics
14 | Dec 02 Su | HW 13 (last HW): Ch 35: Special Relativity
15 | Dec 03-06 | Mo: Last Exam (Ch 35); Tu-We-Th: Review
16 | Dec 13 Th | Final Exam: 8-10 PM, Location: ANH 1281.


Wolfgang Bauer, Gary D. Westfall: University Physics with Modern Physics, Volume 2, McGraw-Hill, 1st edition. (1st edition: ISBN 978-0-07-336796-5)

We will use LON-CAPA, MSU's own free and flexible web-based course management system.

We will use iClicker in this class.