Physics 232, Spring 2002

Instructors: Matthew Bertens, Albert Greer, Cara Henson, Ed Wilson

Text: Laboratory Manual for Physics 232, available from the Physics and Astronomy Club.

You may purchase the manual from Club representatives who will bring them to the lab.

You will also need a Lab Notebook: Bound, quadrille ruled with numbered pages. (Please, not spiral bound.)

You will do the laboratory exercises in groups of three, and each group will submit a report on the lab exercise (see below for details). Groups will be assigned by your instructor, and will change every three weeks. Keep a record of your work in your lab book. Each student is responsible for completing the lab-write-up according to the instructions in the lab manual. Your lab book must be turned in to your instructor at the end of the lab period.

The following are good habits to develop when doing lab work, and will be required for maximum credit.

Number the pages in your lab book, and prepare a table of contents.

Write in your lab book neatly and in ink AS YOU DO THE WORK. All data should be recorded in data tables, neatly and in ink, together with appropriate units and relevant measurement uncertainty.

Describe your procedures clearly and in complete English sentences. Grammar and spelling are important! Diagrams should be included. Diagrams may be drawn in pencil. If you make a mistake, draw a single line through the incorrect material. Do not erase anything and do not tear pages out of your book.

Each week one member of the group will complete a detailed write-up of your experimental work. The report should be completed after discussion and collaboration with the other members of the group, and according to instructions in the lab manual. The lab instructor will determine who is responsible for the formal write-up each week. Graphs in the formal write-up may be completed using a computer and inserted into the write-up.  Formal write-ups will be scored on a scale of 0-20 and will contribute 50% of your total lab report score.

In weeks when you are not responsible for the group lab report, your lab book will be scored on a scale of 0-10, and will contribute 50% of your total lab report score .  Your instructor will let you know what is expected of you.  If you are not doing the formal report, you will turn your book in at the end of the lab period.  No exceptions!

There will be lab quizzes each week on the preparatory reading. There will also be a lab midterm and a lab final, as shown on the attached schedule.

HINT: You will do the Laboratory Midterm and Final individually with open Lab Manual and lab notebook. A well written lab book will be of enormous help to you on exams!


(a) COMPLETION of the lab is necessary to receive a grade for the lecture. Also, you MUST REMAIN IN THE LECTURE through the last midterm in order to remain in the lab. (That is, you must actually take the 2nd mid-term. You must actively participate in the class up through the 2nd mid-term.)

(b) ALL questions about registration in the laboratory, change of section, etc. will be handled, upon request in writing, by the lab coordinator, Dr. Lea.

(c) If you cannot meet your regular lab section for some compelling reason, it is possible - and YOUR responsibility - to arrange a makeup in a different lab section. You will need to obtain consent of the instructors in both sections and to make your peace with your lab group. (This should happen infrequently and, if possible, be arranged ahead of time.)


(At end of semester the lab coordinator will compare grading among the sections and make any adjustments needed to assure uniformity across the sections.)

The lab midterm and lab final will each count 15% of total credit. (A minimum of 1/3 credit on each exam is required to pass the class.) Quizzes will count 10%. The lab reports will constitute the remaining 60%.  Your detailed lab write-ups will constitute 50% of your total lab report score: the other 50% will be for the weeks that you are not responsible for the formal write-up.

The lowest quiz score and the lowest non-formal write-up score will be dropped.  This allows you to miss one lab without penalty.  If you miss more than one lab, you will need to do a make-up in another section, or take an Incomplete.

The lab coordinator reserves the right to raise your grade as much as 2/3 letter grade if your scores show continuous, substantial, improvement throughout the semester.

Laboratory Schedule
Week: Dates: Exercise:
I: Jan 30, 31: Class procedures:start electrostatics
I: Feb 6,7 Charge and electrostatics
II: Feb 13,14 Magnetic Field Lines
III: Feb 20,21 Batteries, Lightbulbs, and Voltmeters
IV: Feb 27,28 Ohm's Law
V: March 6,7 Resistors in series and parallel
VI: March 13,14 Non-Ohmic Devices
VII: March 20,21 MIDTERM
March 27,28 SPRING BREAK
VIII: April 3,4 Acceleration and deflection of electrons
IX: April  10,11 Magnetic deflection of electrons
X: April 17,18 Introduction to the oscilloscope
XI: April 24,25 The RC circuit
XII: May 1,2 Sinusoidally driven RC circuit
XIII: May 8,9 LRC circuit and resonance
XIV: May 15,16 FINAL