PHY 2049 - Physics 2 with Calculus - Fall 2014

Course Overview


Prof. Zongan Qiu
2039 New Physics Bldg.
Phone: 392-8745
Prof. Paul Avery
2029 New Physics Bldg.
Phone: 392-9264


Send e-mail only to phy2049 AT so that both instructors can see it and have all information in one place. Note that homework help is given during your discussion section and during office hours, not through e-mail.

Class lecture

MWF Period 6 (12:50 - 1:40pm) 1001 NPB
MWF Period 7 (1:55 - 2:45pm) 1001 NPB


Fundamentals of Physics, Volume 2, 9th edition, by Halliday, Resnick & Walker with WileyPlus (required). ISBN 9780470900925. This ISBN number is unique to the University of Florida and is sold only at local bookstores.

There are two options for purchasing the textbook/WileyPlus access code:

1. Purchase Halliday, Resnick and Walker Fundamentals of Physics 9/e, Volume 2 with WileyPlus at a local book store (cost is $77.25). Make sure it says "with WileyPlus". If you purchase the textbook elsewhere it will not come with the access code, the book is likely to be considerably more expensive and you have to pay for the access code separately. Do not throw out the card that is packaged with the book because it contains the code that you will need to access the online homework system. Purchasing a new access code costs additional money. Even used books that do not come with an access code will probably cost more. We have gone to some trouble to negotiate this good-value deal for the package.

2. You can purchase an online only version of the text containing the WileyPlus access code at Buy WileyPlus. This contains the access code and the online book for the course and is offered at a specially discounted rate of $30.

The online version of the text is significantly less expensive than the hardcopy. However, PHY2049 is a foundational course for science and engineering, and it is likely that you will find the hard copy text an important and useful reference for your future courses and in your career for many years to come. You should weigh the pros and cons of the two options carefully.

About the course

PHY2049 is an introduction to electricity and magnetism (E&M). Topics covered include electrostatics, electric current and circuits, capacitance, magnetism, induction, electromagnetic waves, reflection and refraction, mirror and lens optics, interference and diffraction, and optical instruments.

Our goal at all times is to help you understand the basic physical principles governing E&M phenomena so that you can apply them to real situations. In addition to providing the basic theoretical underpinnings to the subject, we use many examples, "concept problems", physical demonstrations and virtual demonstrations. We also show many examples of everyday tools and advanced instruments that utilize these principles.

Grades: Grades are based on total points accumulated from exams, discussion section quizzes, homework and extra credit in-class quizzes. The calculation is shown on the grading page.

e-Learning website: The lectures notes, old exam solutions, exam grades, quiz grades, homework grades, extra credit points will be posted at e-Learning.

Schedule: Dates for lecture topics, exams, quizzes and homework are found on the schedule page.

Honor Code: The UF Honor Code applies to all aspects of this course, as detailed on the course Academic Honesty link. It is mandatory that you report any possible infractions to your instructor immediately.

Students with disabilities: Students requesting classroom accommodation for disabilities must first register with the Disability Resource Center. The Dean of Students Office will provide documentation to the student who must then provide this documentation to the instructor when requesting accommodation before an exam. Please print and fill out the Accommodated Test Request (ATR) Form, and return it to the Disability Resource Center (DCR) at least one week before the first exam. The Accommodated Testing Service (ATS) at DCR will administer all exams.

Required work

  • This web site serves as the syllabus for the course. Each page on the web site has a link on the menu at left. You are required to read each of these pages. The web site is detailed and chances are any policy questions you may have are answered here.

  • You are responsible for ongoing course work, which is described on the web site: reading the text for the assigned material, attending lecture, doing the weekly homework, attending discussion section and taking the quizzes, and taking the exams


Firm knowledge of the following concepts from Physics 1 and proficiency in handling them is essential for your success in this course.

  • Kinematics
  • Force and Torque, Conditions for equillibrium
  • Three Newton's Laws of dynamics
  • Motion under a constant force
  • Dynamics of circular motion
  • Work done by a force
  • Kinetic and Potential Energy
  • Laws of energy and momentum conservation

In addition the material from the following mathematics topics will be used routinely.

  • Algebra
  • Trigonometry
  • Analytic Geometry
  • Calculus 1 and 2
  • Calculus 3 (corequisite, used in Gauss' law and Ampere's law)

Effective strategies for learning physics

From interviewing students we have found that the A to B+ students have better habits and spend more time on this course than B and C students. In particular, they rarely miss class, do all the recommended homework problems and more, read ahead and study the material for several hours a week (not just before exams). Developing good habits at the start of the semester, before things get busy and you fall behind, will help you succeed.

A large fraction of your study time should be devoted to problem solving, which is essential to learning and cannot be replaced by mere listening and reading. This is the reason we provide you a significant number of end-of-chapter questions and problems, web-based problems, quizzes and Java applets.

The following strategies will help you to do well in the course:

  • Use office hours. If you don't understand something, ask someone during office hours. Office hours are spread across many hours of the week for your convenience. There is also a Tutoring Center with a number of people and resources for students in Physics courses, and a student organization, Tau Beta Pi, which provides help on the homework and reviews before exams.

  • Keep up with the course. The best strategy for success is to stay up to date with the readings and homework. In particular, solving problems will improve your performance on exams and quizzes far better than memorizing formulas or cramming. A good rule of thumb is that you should be spending about 6-9 hours on the material outside of class.

  • Attend lectures and discussions regularly. We cannot stress enough the importance of coming to class. Although you might not understand everything presented in lecture and discussion, you are unconsciously processing information that will serve you well later. Frequent class skipping contributes strongly to poor student performance.

  • Read ahead before lecture. Even though you may not understand the chapter material, a cursory advance reading "primes" your brain to be receptive to the material when it is discussed in lecture or discussion.

  • Ask questions. Your question is not stupid and is probably widely shared. We just hope that our answer is not stupid. :-)