Course Syllabus

01:750:124 (PHY-124) Syllabus:

Course Description: Analytical Physics IB is a continuation of introductory physics which explores rotational motion of extended solid objects, harmonic motion and waves, and finally thermodynamics. You should have had prior coursework in Linear Kinematics (such as projectile motion), Newton's Laws (forces), Conservation of Energy (kinetic, potential energy), and Conservation of Momentum (collisions, impulse). This is a calculus-based physics course and you are expected to perform power-law derivatives and integrals of simple polynomial functions, such as what you would have in any Calculus 1 course.

We will use the free online textbook, University Physics by OpenStax. For Weeks 1-7 we will use OpenStax University Physics Volume 1, and for Weeks 8-13 we will use OpenStax University Physics Volume 2, both are freely available online at those links, and you may download a pdf version of each Volume at those links as well.

Instructor: Professor Michael Gershenson



Administrator: Professor Charles Ruggieri



Summary: An introductory calculus-based course in physics, aimed at students majoring in engineering or physics. This is the second part of two semester sequence (with 01:750:123), which serves as a pre-requisite for 01:750:227.


Co-requisite: Calculus II   01:640:152 (01:640:135 accepted if taken prior to enrollment)


Meeting times: One 80-minute lecture per week, offered at 2 times led by the lecturer. One 80-minute recitation per week led by graduate TA and undergraduate LA.

Lecture: F4 (2:00 pm – 3:20 pm), F5 (3:50 pm – 5:10 pm) Eastern Standard Time. All lectures are held in the Physics Lecture Hall found at this Rutgers map link.

Recitations: One 80-minute recitation per week. All recitations are held in Serin Physics Labs, either in room 227 or room 232 depending on which section you're registered. You must enter the building from the double doors facing Allison Road Classroom Building, as shown in the map image below:

Serin access map.png


Text: University Physics by OpenStax, available for free online at the following links. You may download a pdf version at those links as well, and/or view the textbook in your web browser. 

Volume 1 (Weeks 1-7):

Volume 2 (Weeks 8-13):

Learning Management System (LMS): Canvas

Online Homework System: ExpertTA

  • to gain access to ExpertTA, simply click on the first ExpertTA assignment in Module 1 which is Tutorial 1. You will then be directed to the ExpertTA page and you will see options for payment, including a 2-week grace period free-of-charge and costs $32.50 after the grace period. Note: you should only access your ExpertTA assignments by clicking on the links in this Canvas page (that is, Tutorial and Homework links in the Modules).

Provisional Grading Plans:

  • 5% Pre-lecture video quizzes in Canvas Modules (submitted on Canvas)
  • 5% Pre-lecture Tutorials (submitted on ExpertTA)
  • 10% Homework (submitted on ExpertTA)
  • 8% Recitation Group Work (submitted in-class during recitation)
  • 7% Canvas Mini-Tests (submitted on Canvas)
  • 20% First Midterm (in-person)
  • 20% Second Midterm (in-person)
  • 25% Final Exam (in-person)

What we drop before calculating your grade:

  • 2 lowest Recitation Group Works
  • 2 lowest Homeworks

Lateness Policy:

  • Tutorial and Homework have a 10% deduction every hour late until 0% is reached and no credit is left to be earned.


Provisional Grade Cutoffs (these cutoffs may change in students' favor depending on overall class performance):

A            89.5%

B+          89.4 to 84.5%

B            84.4 to 74.5%

C+          74.4 to 69.5%

C            69.4 to 59.5%

D            59.4 to 49.5%

F            <49.5%


Weekly Schedule (provisional) – see Course Calendar page for more details.

Week                  Topic

Week 1               Kinematics of Rotational Motion.

Week 2               Dynamics of Rotational Motion of Particles.

Week 3               Planetary Motion, Static Equilibrium of Rigid Bodies.

Week 4              Dynamics of Rotational Motion of Rigid Bodies.

Week 5               Vibrational Motion, Harmonic Oscillator.

Week 6               Mechanical Waves.

Week 7               Sound Waves.

Week 8               Heat, Temperature, and Energy. First Law of Thermodynamics.

Week 9               Kinetic Theory of Gases.

Week 10             Thermodynamic Processes with an Ideal Gas.

Week 11             Second Law of Thermodynamics. Statistical Interpretation of Entropy.

Week 12             Second Law of Thermodynamics. Heat Engines.

Week 13             Second Law of Thermodynamics.  Phase Transformations.


Teaching Assistants



Class Meeting Times
(Note: the recitation section meeting times below use the period codes for 80-minute classes on Busch Campus found at this link)

Office Hours (held in Canvas Conferences starting Monday 1/24)
Nicole Firestone

Section 1: M1 in SRN-227

Section 2: M2 in SRN-227

Thursdays 12:00-1:00pm


Siyou Guo

Section 8: T2 in SRN-227

Section 9: T3 in SRN-227

Section 10: T4 in SRN-227

Section 11: T5 in SRN-227

Wednesdays 10:00-11:00am

Zoom Link

Passcode: 896552

Bingqing Li

Section 5: M5 in SRN-227

Section 6: M6 in SRN-227

Section 7: M7 in SRN-227

Tuesdays 1:00-2:00pm


Jinglin Liu

Section 3: M3 in SRN-227

Section 24: H7 in SRN-227

Section 27: W8 in SRN-227

Thursdays 6:00-7:00pm


Mingyang Ma

Section 4: M4 in SRN-227

Section 12: T6 in SRN-227

Section 13: T7 in SRN-227

Section 17: W6 in SRN-227

Mondays 3:30-4:30pm


Tomer Ravid

Section 20: H3 in SRN-227

Section 21: H4 in SRN-227

Section 22: H5 in SRN-227

Section 23: H6 in SRN-227

Wednesdays 2:00-3:00pm


Dilys Ruan

Section 14: W3 in SRN-227

Section 15: W4 in SRN-227

Section 16: W5 in SRN-227

Section 19: H2 in SRN-227

Fridays 11:00am-12:00pm


Who to contact?

  • If you have questions about Recitation, such as excused absences or grading questions, contact the TA of your section. If you have questions about Homework, go to any Office Hour session.
  • If you have questions about Lecture, contact the lecturer (Prof. Gershenson).
  • If you have a letter of accommodation or other course-related questions, please contact the Administrator (Prof. Ruggieri).

Weekly Cycle (Day-by-Day view)

two-week module cycle example.png

Weekly Activity Flow (Order of Activities)

weekly activity sequence image.png

Summary of Plans for Remote Instruction

  • Technology requirements: Students will need a microphone (for lectures, recitations, and office hours that are conducted online until January 30th - after January 30th all meetings will be held in-person at your scheduled times and locations for the section you registered) and either a phone camera or a scanner (for possibly needing to upload material into Canvas, or discussion board questions). A webcam is not required, but, if you are able, you are encouraged to use webcam during recitation and office hours to better connect with your group members and your instructors.

  • Asynchronous Activities and Resources in Canvas Modules:
    • Introductory videos and video quizzes related to that week’s material will be posted on Canvas to start each week’s activities. The videos are followed by a short quiz, which you must attempt to get credit. These video quizzes are based on effort, not correctness – if you submit an answer, you earn full credit even if the answer is wrong. When you submit an answer attempt, you will see the correct answer and you will also see a text-based explanation for the correct answer.
    • Weekly Tutorials on ExpertTA have approximately 5 questions per week on introductory concepts related to that week’s material, and is to be completed before lecture. Tutorials are meant to be your first attempts at problem-solving for that week’s content, and you are encouraged to use Hints and Feedback features of ExpertTA. There are no penalties for incorrect guesses, but you have a limit of 5 attempts per problem. You are assessed based on correctness, so you ultimately must answer the question correctly to earn credit.
    • Lecture slides will be posted in advance of the lecture both in the Files folder and in the Lecture Notes and Videos page.
    • Video clips of the weekly lecture demos will be posted in advance of the lecture
    • Weekly homeworks on ExpertTA have approximately 10-15 questions per week and will will be assigned and submitted via Expert TA. There are no penalties for incorrect guesses, but you have a limit of 5 attempts per problem, and you are assessed based on correctness, so you ultimately must answer the question correctly to earn credit.
      • Full solutions to ExpertTA Assignments are available within ExpertTA after the due date. Follow these instructions to see solutions: Go to any ExpertTA assignment, then once you're in the ExpertTA page, click on "Class Management" on the upper left side ExpertTA_classmanagement button.png, that will bring you to the list of current and prior course assignments. Click the assignment of interest and then click, "View Assignment Solutions As Configured" to view the full solutions; see the images below for guidance.
      • Full_Solutions_ChazR-1.jpg
    • Weekly two-question mini-tests on Canvas (in Modules page): For each module, you will be required to do a two-question mini test submitted on Canvas as a quiz. One question will be conceptual and multiple choice, and the other question will be an application question with numeric response. These mini-tests are limited in time (10 minute time limit) and are more beneficial when you treat them as if they are a real test. They are graded for participation, not correctness, but you must meaningfully attempt the test to see the solutions, and the amount you learn is directly related to the amount of effort you put into the task.
    • Canvas Discussion Board will be monitored by the course leadership, and you may post any questions about the weekly activities or the course logistics which will be addressed by course leaders and/or other students. Treat the discussion board as a way to connect with your class peers and as another resource to have your questions answered in a timely manner.

  • Synchronous Activities
    • Weekly Lectures (in Physics Lecture Hall on Busch campus): The lectures will be held in person in the Serin Physics Lecture Hall (PLH) on Busch campus starting the week of January 31st. Lecture notes will be provided on Canvas before the lecture. There will be polling questions through the lecture to aid in your engagement and learning; please participate to the best of your ability. Note that Lectures 1 and 2 will be held via Zoom due to Covid-19 restrictions. After January 30th, all course meetings will be held in-person at the times and locations of the section to which you're registered.
    • Weekly Recitations (in Serin physics building on Busch campus): The recitations will be held in person led by your graduate Teaching Assistant and one undergraduate Learning Assistant. Recitation attendance is an important aspect of your learning in this course and in your overall course credit; you are expected to attend every recitation. During recitations you are expected to engage with a group of students (usually groups of 2-3) on physics problems and concepts and mini laboratory activities. You are expected to ask questions of your fellow group members and of your TA and LA. We will no longer have recitation quizzes; the entire recitation time is dedicated to group work for a group grade.
      • Students who miss a recitation, and have a valid reason for missing it, may attend another recitation (only one with the same TA!). This will be allowed by permission only. In the event you cannot attend your TA's recitation, you may ask the TA to allow you to complete the make-up activity for a grade. Missing a recitation and submitting work without a validated excuse will result in a zero for that week.
    • Weekly Office Hours (Canvas Conferences, Zoom, or in-person): Every TA and the Lecturer will hold 1-hour office hour sessions weekly starting the second week of classes. This office hour list will be posted to Canvas Home page. You may attend any office hour, you do not need to attend your TA’s office hour. You are strongly encouraged to attend office hours for questions on the homework and labs.

  • Exams
    • Each exam will be an in-person individual assessment and will contain multiple choice questions.
    • Exams will be closed notes/book, you will have an equation sheet provided, but you must bring your own calculator and writing utensil. Link to equation sheet found here.
    • Each of the two midterms are 80 minutes in duration and usually have around 15 questions.
    • The final exam is a cumulative final held in a 3-hour time slot, usually with around 30 questions.
    • You may ask questions during exams by raising your hand and alerting the proctor.
    • Academic integrity (see below) must always be followed! You may NOT contact anyone or receive/give any assistance via any means or use other resources during the exam. The exam answers must be entirely your own.
    • Details about exam procedures will be announced approximately two weeks ahead of each exam date.


Academic Integrity

Students are expected to maintain the highest level of academic integrity. You should be familiar with the university policy on academic integrity: Violations will be reported and enforced according to this policy.


Use of external sources to obtain solutions to homework assignments or exams is cheating and is a violation of the University Academic Integrity policy. Cheating in the course may result in penalties ranging from a zero on an assignment to an F for the course to expulsion from the University. Posting of homework assignments, exams, recorded lectures, or other lecture materials to external sites without the permission of the instructor is a violation of copyright and constitutes a facilitation of dishonesty, which may result in the same penalties as explicit cheating.


Not only does the use of such sites violate the University’s policy on Academic Integrity, using such sites interferes with your achievement of the learning you are paying tuition for. Assignments, quizzes, and exams are given not simply to assign grades, but to promote the active learning that occurs through completing assignments on your own. Getting the right answer is much less important than learning how to get the right answer. This learning is critical to your success in subsequent courses and your careers.


Student Wellness Services

Office of Disability Services
, for academic accommodations such as extra time on assessments. (848)-202-3111, Lucy Stone Hall, Suite A145 Livingston Campus 54 Joyce Kilmer Avenue Piscataway, NJ 08854


Student Counseling, ADAP & Psychiatric Services (CAPS) wellness for non-emergency psychological

health issues services (848) 932-7884, 17 Senior Street, New Brunswick, NJ 08901


Violence Prevention & Victim Assistance (VPVA), (848) 932-1181, 3 Bartlett Street, New Brunswick, NJ



Scarlet Listeners for confidential peer counseling and referral hotline, (732) 247-5555,