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Blinn College • Bryan • Natural Science • Physics - PHYS

College Physics I PHYS-1401

  • Fall 2013

  • Section SECTION_304 CRN-10765

  • 4 Credits

  • 08/26/2013 to 12/13/2013

  • Modified 08/22/2013

Meeting Times


Tuesday, Thursday, 7:45 AM to 9:00 AM, G213


Tuesday, Thursday, 9:10 AM to 10:25 AM, G233

Contact Information

Instructor: Dr. Elaine Tennant

Office: G202
Phone: 979 209 8932

Office Hours:

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, 10:25 AM to 11:25 AM, G202


A course primarily designed for students preparing for careers in architecture, biology, medicine, pharmacy and other fields requiring two semesters of physics. Topics covered include fundamentals of classical mechanics, heat and sound.


Prerequisites: (i) MATH 1314 and MATH 1316, (ii) MATH 2312 or (iii) MATH 2412

Core Curriculum Statement

This is a Core Course in the 42-Hour Core Curriculum of Blinn College. As such, students will develop proficiency in the appropriate Intellectual Competencies, Exemplary Educational Objectives, and Perspectives.


  1. Solve problems in one- and two-dimensional kinematics.
  2. Apply Newton's laws of motion to one- and two-dimensional linear dynamics problems.
  3. Utilize the definition of work, the work-energy theorem and the principle of conservation of energy in solving physics problems.
  4. Apply the principle of conservation of linear momentum.
  5. Solve problems in rotational kinematics and dynamics, including the principles of conservation of energy and conservation of angular momentum.
  6. Utilize principles such as Newton's law of universal gravitation, conservation of energy or Kepler's laws to solve problems in gravitation.
  7. Describe selected properties of oscillations and waves.
  8. Solve basic fluid statics problems.
  9. Distinguish between the concepts of heat and temperature.  Use the concepts of specific heat and latent heat in solving problems in calorimetry.
  10. Recognize, explain and apply the laws of thermodynamics, including applications involving ideal gases.
  11. Demonstrate techniques to set up and perform experiments and collect data; in a laboratory report, analyze the data, communicate results and draw conclusions



Textbook: James S. Walker, Physics, 4th edition (Vol. I).  

Laboratory Manual: Physics 1401 Laboratory Manual: Copy Stop Print & Postal

scientific calculator

Course Requirements

This course will consist of: 3 Tests; 8 Labs; 5-12 quizzes;1 comprehensive Final Exam.

Homework will be assigned but not graded.  Class participation is encouraged but not graded.


Criteria for Grading:  Grades will be based on exams, labs, homework, and quizzes.

  • Exams:  All exams will be closed-book and closed-note exams.  For any question in which you must do some calculation to get an answer, including multiple choice, you must show your work in doing the calculations in order to receive credit!
  • Labs:  There will be a lab exercise approximately once per week.  
  • Quizzes:  Approximately 5-12 quizzes will be given.  Most of these will be group quizzes or take-home quizzes.  Some quizzes will be individual work quizzes.

Students’ lowest quiz grade will be dropped.

  • Grading summary:  Exams 1-3 (15% each), Final (25%), Labs (15%), Quizzes (15%).


The grading system of Blinn College is as follows*:

A = 90 – 100   Superior

B = 80 – 89   Above Average

C = 70 – 79   Average

D = 60 – 69   Passing

F =       < 60   Failing

Blinn College Policies

Blinn College policies on civility, class attendance; scholastic integrity; students with disabilities; final grade appeals; and electronic devices as stated in the Blinn College Student Handbook, Faculty Handbook, Blinn College Catalog and specific technical program handbooks. All policies, guidelines and procedures in the Student and Faculty Handbook and the Board and Administrative Policy Manuals are applicable to this course

Civility Statement

Members of the Blinn College community, which includes faculty, staff and students, are expected to act honestly and responsibly in all aspects of campus life. Blinn College holds all members accountable for their actions and words. Therefore, all members should commit themselves to behave in a manner that recognizes personal respect and demonstrates concern for the personal dignity, rights, and freedoms of every member of the College community, including respect for College property and the physical and intellectual property of others.

      Civility Notification Statement. If a student is asked to leave the classroom because of uncivil behavior, the student may not return to that class until he or she arranges a conference with the instructor; it is the student’s responsibility to arrange for this conference. 

      This statement reflects step one in a possible four step process.  The Incivility Protocol is detailed in the Blinn College Student Handbook.

Attendance Policy

The College District believes that class attendance is essential for student success; therefore, students are required to promptly and regularly attend all their classes. A record of attendance will be maintained from the first day of classes and/or the first day the student’s name appears on the roster through final examinations. If a student has one week’s worth of unexcused absences during the semester, he or she will be sent an e-mail by the College District requiring the student to contact his or her instructor and schedule a conference immediately to discuss his/her attendance issues. Should the student accumulate two weeks’ worth of unexcused absences, he or she will be administratively withdrawn from class.

There are four forms of excused absences recognized by the institution:

  1. observance of religious holy days—The student should notify his or her instructor(s) not later than the 15th day of the semester concerning the specific date(s) that the student will be absent for any religious holy day(s);
  2. representing the College District at an official institutional function;
  3. high school dual credit students representing the independent school district at an official institutional function; and
  4. military service.

Other absences may be considered excused at the discretion of the faculty member with appropriate documentation.  A student enrolled in a developmental course is subject to College District-mandated attendance policies. Failure to attend developmental classes shall result in removal from the course as defined by the College District.

It is the student’s responsibility to officially drop a class he or she is no longer attending.  To officially drop a class the student must obtain the class withdrawal form from Enrollment Services, complete the class withdrawal form, secure the required signatures, and return the completed form to Enrollment Services. The last day to drop with a Q is according to the Academic Calendar.

Scholastic Integrity

Blinn College does not tolerate cheating, plagiarism, or any other act of dishonesty with regard to the course in which you are enrolled.  The following text defines the faculty member’s responsibility with regard to the scholastic integrity expectation for this and all courses at Blinn College.

It is the responsibility of faculty members to maintain scholastic integrity at the College District by refusing to tolerate any form of scholastic dishonesty.  Adequate control of test materials, strict supervision during testing, and other preventive measures should be utilized, as necessary, to prevent cheating or plagiarism.  If there is compelling evidence that a student is involved in cheating or plagiarism, the instructor should assume responsibility and address the infraction.  Likewise, any student accused of scholastic dishonesty is entitled to due process as outlined in Blinn College Board Policy FLB (Local).  The Scholastic Integrity Policy is located in the Blinn College Student Handbook. In a case of scholastic dishonesty, it is critical that written documentation be maintained at each level throughout the process.

Students with Disabilities

Blinn College is dedicated to providing the least restrictive learning environment for all students. Support services for students with documented disabilities are provided on an individual basis, upon request. Requests for services should be made directly to the Office of Special Populations serving the campus of your choice.  For the Bryan campus, the Office of Special Populations (Administration Building) can be reached at (979)209-7251.  The Brenham, Sealy and Schulenburg campuses are served by the Office of Special Populations on the Brenham campus (Administration Building Room 104) and can be reached at (979)830-4157.  Additional information can be found at

Final Grade Appeal

If a student wishes to appeal a final grade in a course, Blinn College Board Policy FLDB (Local), Course Grade Complaints, outlines the timeline for the appeal and the four steps in the appeal.  This policy is located in the Blinn College Student Handbook.

Electronic Devices

All the functions of all personal electronic devices designed for communication and/or entertainment (cell phones, pagers, beepers, iPods, and similar devices) must be turned off and kept out of sight in all College District classrooms and associated laboratories.  Any noncompliance with this policy shall be addressed in accordance with the College District civility policy (administrative policy).  This information is contained in Blinn College Board Policy FLB (Local).

Course Policies

Problem Resolution

If you have a complaint about your class, you should first request a conference with your instructor to try to resolve the problems or issues. If the problems or issues cannot be resolved at the instructor level, you should request a conference with the Asst. Division Chair, Dr. Terry Honan,











Syllabus, Ch. 1

Units, dimensional analysis, significant figures


Th 8/29

Start Ch. 2

One-dimensional kinematics





Finish Ch. 2

One-dimensional kinematics


Th 9/5

Start Ch. 3



T 9/10

Finish Ch. 3, Ch. 4

Vectors, two-dimensional kinematics


Th 9/12

Start Ch. 5

Newton’s laws of motion




Finish Ch. 5, Start Ch. 6

Newton’s laws, applications of Newton’s laws


Th 9/19


Exam 1:  Chapters 1-5


T 9/24

Finish Ch. 6

Applications of Newton’s laws


Th 9/26

Ch. 7

Work and kinetic energy


T 10/1

Start Ch. 8

Potential energy and conservation of energy


Th 10/3

Finish Ch. 8

Potential energy and conservation of energy


T 10/8

Start Ch. 9

Linear momentum and collisions


Th 10/10

Finish Ch. 9

Linear momentum and collisions





Exam 2:  Chapters 6-9


Th 10/17

Start Ch. 10

Rotational kinematics and energy


T 10/22

Finish Ch. 10

Rotational kinematics and energy


Th 10/25

Start Ch. 11

Rotational dynamics and static equilibrium


T 10/29

Finish Ch. 11

Rotational dynamics and static equilibrium


Th 10/31

Ch. 12



T 11/5

Start Ch. 13



Th 11/7

Finish Ch. 13





Start Ch. 14

Waves and sound


Th 11/14

Finish Ch. 14

Waves and sound





Exam 3:  Chapters 10-14


Th 11/21

Ch. 15

Fluid Statics


T 11/26

Ch. 16

Temperature and heat


Th 11/28

Thanksgiving Holiday



T 12/3

Ch. 17

Phases and phase changes


Th 12/5

Ch. 18

The laws of thermodynamics


T 12/10

Final Exam, 7:45 am – 9:45 am, G233










Important dates to remember:


Last day to register or add classes

Tuesday, August 27

Last day to drop course with a grade of “Q”

Friday, November 15

Holidays, Thanksgiving

November 28

Final Exam

Tuesday, Dec. 10, 7:45 am – 9:45 am, G233