Phys 122: General Physics II Lab Sec. 1 (14934); Monday 13:10- , TH 116. This is the lab to accompany Ph
121, the second semester of non-calculus physics for life-science majors.
Prerequisites: Ph 111; concurrent registration in the
lecture part of the course (PH 121) is required.
Instructor: Name: office TH nnn,
phone nnn-nnnn; help session Day nn:nn; office hours Day nn:nn
or by email name (at) stars.sfsu.edu.
Materials Required: For the first meeting of the lab you will
A hard-bound quad-ruled lab book to write in;
Roaring Springs #77475 ($2.95 at the bookstore) is fine; so is [Roaring Springs77591 = National #43-591] ($7.95).
The lab manual for both semesters of this course, General Physics Laboratory Manual,
Physics 112 and Physics 122, Revised 2006, is on sale at the bookstore
($46.70). Students may download the lab write-ups from the web, at
A $4 lab fee is also required. On the first day of class
the lab instructor will give each student a voucher, to be taken to the
Cashier's Office (ADM 155) for payment of this fee. The receipt from the
cashier must be returned to the instructor. Payment of this fee is
required for continuing enrollment in the lab.
You may also want to bring a pocket calculator.
You will learn to make reliable measurements of physical
quantities, and to estimate the uncertainty in the measurement.
You will learn to record scientific observation and
analysis in a lab notebook, following accepted scientific practice.
You will carry out measurements and observations permitting
you to verify some of the physical laws presented in the lecture part of
You will learn the scientific method of testing theory by
Keeping a Lab Book. All your work in the lab is to be documented in this
book, in a special way explained below in detail. This is the method used by
research scientists in all fields to record their work as they do it. Here are
some procedures to follow.
While you are in the lab, write only in your lab
book, and only in ink. A single exception is the blackboard - use
the blackboard for quick calculations or temporary notes.
Treat the lab book as a sequential log of what happened,
noting the time as you start each new experiment or procedure.
NEVER tear out pages from the lab book. No re-writing
Every week, when you enter the lab, open your book and make
the first entry. Write the date and the time. Then write what you are
going to do that day, in about two sentences and in your own words. For
instance, today you might write
·Monday August 27, 2007.Physics Lab.Today we are
·going to do something with computers.I guess I have to
·buy a lab manual too.
Describe what you do as you do it. Don't devote a lot of
space to writing out procedure before you do it. It is unrealistic to
write down everything you're going to do ahead of time, because what you
do often depends on how the early phases of the experiment work out.
Diagrams are very important. Every time you work with a
piece of apparatus, make some sort of sketch. Capture the essence of the
situation, without unnecessary detail (unless you just like drawing!) Often
the diagram can provide a convenient and easy-to-read way to record data -
for instance, writing voltages measured directly onto a circuit diagram.
A guideline for knowing how much detail to put in: you
should be able to get out your lab book three months later and repeat the
experiment, just from what you have in your lab book. (See Final Exam
Don't record data and plan to analyze it later. In each
part of the experiment, take the data, do any necessary calculations, and
finish your complete conclusion, before doing the next part. Each time you
obtain a result, put a box around it so that it stands out. Once you get a
result, discuss its error and its interpretation before going on to the
next part of the experiment.
Be sure and answer all questions asked in the lab manual,
and put a box around the answer.
At the end of the lab, leave your lab book on the table at
the front of the room. There will be no work required outside of class.
The grade for the lab is separate from the
lecture-course grade. The instructor of the Ph 121 lecture and the lab
coordinator will determine the letter grades given for the lab course, based on
the numerical scores given by the lab instructors. All lab sections will be
given the same distribution of grades, with an average grade of about 3.0 (B).
The numerical grade will be based on grades for the individual labs, quizzes,
and the final exam, with the final exam counting the same as two labs. Note
that, as in most science courses, the grades will be assigned according to a
curve. We do NOT follow the system
where grades between 90 and 100 represent A's, 80-90, B's, etc. Students will
be given an estimated letter grade near midterm time. The class-average score
for each lab should be given by the instructor when the lab books are returned.
Quizzes: A short quiz may be given at the start of each lab.
Final Exam: A final exam will be given during the last lab. Each person
will do two one-hour experiments, working alone and referring only to their lab
book. Each of the experiments will follow part of one of the regular labs
closely. This means that you should make sure that you carry out some of the
measurements for each of the labs. Your lab book should contain all of the
information necessary to carry out the measurements.
Lab Partners: The instructor will re-assign people to
groups at various times during the semester.
There will not be a makeup lab at the end of the semester, so try to be at
every meeting of the lab. Some instructors will drop everyone's lowest lab
grade, so one lab can be missed without penalty. You can make up one additional
missed lab by going to the Exploratorium,
working with some suitable display and writing a report on it. See the
instructor for more details if necessary.