Course Syllabus

Spring 2019 Physics 2 PHY2054 - Course Syllabus



Paul Avery Shawn Weatherford
Prof. Paul Avery
2029 New Physics Bldg.
Phone: 392-9264
Dr. Shawn Weatherford
2142 New Physics Bldg
Phone: 392-8747


Send e-mail only to phy2054 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

TR Period 4 (10:40 - 11:30am) 1001 NPB
TR Period 5 (11:45 - 12:35pm) 1001 NPB

Discussion Sections

See Discussion Sections page for details about meeting times, location, and contact information for your instructor.

Textbook and Course Materials

  • College Physics: A strategic approach. (Knight, Jones and Field), 4th edition, with MasteringPhysics. Print ISBN-13:978-0-13-460903-4.
  • The course requires students to purchase access to the online homework system, MasteringPhysics 

Access to the required course materials above may be obtained from the UF All Access program. Here is the link to have these charges direct billed to your student account:

See this handout for instructions for obtaining course materials with UF All-Access.

HITT Clicker

The course requires the use of a student response clicker. First make sure you have a compatible clicker (such as one shown below the textbook, sending a RF signal) and then register the clicker using the link below.

About the Course

PHY2054 - Physics 2 is the second semester of Physics without calculus, covering electrostatics, electric current, electric circuits and their components, magnetism, induction, electromagnetic waves, optics, optical devices, interference and diffraction. It is typically, but not exclusively, taken by biological sciences majors and pre-professional students, i.e., those planning careers in health care, optometry, pharmacy, etc. It is not a suitable course for physics, chemistry or engineering majors, who are encouraged to take PHY2049 (Physics 2 with calculus) or PHY2061 (enriched Physics 2 with calculus), both of which offer similar material but with more mathematical emphasis.

Course Description

Credits: 4; Prereq: PHY 2053 or the equivalent.
Second semester of introductory physics de-emphasizing calculus. Electric charge, fields and circuits; electromagnetism, applied electricity; geometrical optics, wave optics, applied optics; electrons and photons; atoms and nuclei.(P)

Discussion Sections

Discussion sections are scheduled class meetings where you will get small group instruction on how to answer physics problems, both numerical and conceptual. A highly skilled TA will guide you through the problem solving process that will be helpful for you as you practice the homework problems on your own outside of class. You will also receive formative assessment feedback on your learning through low-stakes weekly quizzes. The content of these quizzes are based on the problems assigned in homework and serve to assess not only the correct answer to quantitative problems, but also critique and provide feedback on how you justify your answer with an in-depth solution.

Practicing physics is the best way to learn it, and the apprenticeship model works quite well as you see how experts identify which physics principles are needed to obtain a correct solution. Review the Discussion Sections page for listing of meeting times.

Class Attendance and Missed Work

Attendance to lectures and discussion sections is required. If you are unable to attend a scheduled class meeting due to university approved and sponsored activities, documented illness under care of physician (see medical excuse policy here), or family emergency, please notify your instructor. Absences due to circumstances listed above during scheduled quizzes or exams will necessitate you to request a makeup quiz or makeup exam following the procedures below. Requirements for class attendance and make-up exams, assignments, and other work in this course are consistent with university policies that can be found at this link.

Discussion Section Quizzes: Students must request a makeup quiz from the discussion section instructor, and if approved, make arrangements with the discussion section instructor.

Missed Discussion Sections: Students are not permitted to earn bonus participation points if they are not attending and participating in solving group problems during discussion sections. Instead of offering makeup discussion sections or providing alternate assignments, we include a "forgiveness factor" into the calculation of the discussion section participation bonus. Students missing class for excused reasons are not permitted to makeup missed bonus opportunities. Note, that the bonus is not just attendance, but also awarded for your active participation during the class. This means that you should be prepared to work collaboratively in teams and contribute constructively to the assigned tasks. Students who attend without contributing to the group will not earn bonus participation points.

Missed Exams: Students missing an exam must notify the instructor BEFORE the beginning of the exam and provide documented evidence for a request for a makeup. It is wise to arrive to campus early on exam days and to drive under the speed limit. Receiving a traffic ticket, or getting stuck in traffic, is not a university approved justification for making up a missed exam. Arrangements will be made to take a makeup exam as soon as possible. The makeup exam will consist of material similar to that which was tested on the missed exam.

Missed H-ITT points: Students are not permitted to earn H-ITT points if they are not successfully submitting responses during the open polling times with a clicker. Instead of offering makeup H-ITT sessions, we include a "forgiveness factor" into the calculation of the H-ITT bonus. Students missing class for excused reasons are not permitted to make up missed bonus opportunities. Students who do not have a functioning clicker with them are not allowed to submit written responses for credit. Please ensure that your clicker number appears on the projection screen indicating a successful submission of your response, and that you discuss any technical difficulties with your instructor. You are permitted to use only the clicker registered for this class. If you lose a clicker and want to register a new clicker, please use the registration form and notify your instructor. Using multiple clickers in a session is a violation of the Honor Code policy with infractions reported to the Registrar.

Missed Homework: Students have ample opportunity to complete available homework assignments prior to the due date. There are no extensions or makeups for homework assignments. Please plan accordingly.

Requirements for class attendance and make-up exams, assignments, and other work in this course are consistent with university policies that can be found at:

Office Hours

Visit your instructors for free help! We're the ones writing your exams and quizzes and have a good idea about how to help you succeed in this course. You may visit any of the TAs, not just the one teaching your discussion section. Please find someone you can go to for help. Here's our Weekly Schedule (subject to changes):

Time M T W R F
Period 1
Period 2

H. Chen


H. Chen
Period 3
D. Ghoreishi


D. Ghoreishi
Period 4


Period 5


Y. Han

P. Avery

Y. Han
Period 6

S. Abhinav

P. Avery

S. Abhinav S. Weatherford
Period 7
A. Tucker S. Weatherford K. Alam
Period 8
K. Gunther K. Alam  
Period 9
K. Gunther A. Tucker   X. Chen
Period 10
  X. Chen


Contact Information/Office Hour Locations for Instructional Team

Instructor Phone Office Location Email
S. Abhinav 352.392.4695 1226
A. Alam 352.392.0139 2157
Prof. Avery 352.392.9264 2029
H. Chen 352.273.4615 2066
X. Chen 352.392.3010 2331
D. Ghoreishi 2220
Y. Han 352.846.3145 2120
K. Gunther 352.392.1668 1234
A. Tucker 352.392.8756 2161
Dr. Weatherford 352.392.8747 2142


Grades are based on total points accumulated from exams, discussion section quizzes, homework and extra credit quizzes. The canvas grading tool will not accurately calculate your grade. 

Your final score is the sum of the following:

Assessment Max Points Calculation
Exam 1 25 25*(earned points/20)
Exam 2 25 25*(earned points/20)
Exam 3 (Final) 25 25*(earned points/20)
Discussion Section Quizzes 20 20*(your earned points/0.9/max quiz points)
Homework 5 5*(your earned points/0.9/max hw points)
Total 100 Sum this column
H-ITT Bonus 2.5 2.5*(your total points/0.8/max points)
Discussion Section Participation Bonus 2.5 2.5*(your total points/0.8/max points)

Letter grades will be reported to the Registrar at the end of the term corresponding to the total score and the minimum values to an accuracy of 0.01, following this grading scheme:

A A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D+ D D- E
≥85.00 80.00 75.00 70.00 65.00 60.00 55.00 50.00 45.00 40.00 35.00 <35.00


There are a total of two during term exams, with the third exam at the end of semester serving as a cumulative final. The dates, times, room locations, chapter coverage and allowed materials are described on the exams page. Please place these exam dates and times in your calendar today.

Exam questions will be taken from a number of sources, typically including (but not limited to!) the textbook, lectures, HITT quizzes and homework problems. Exam format is multiple choice using ScanTron sheets. The answer which you bubble in on the ScanTron is the one we grade, with no exceptions. 

Unless superseded by a valid excuse a missed exam will result in a zero. Valid excuses are officially sanctioned UF events, medical excuses or family emergencies. Acceptable excuses will require a coach's, doctor's or instructor sanctioned note with a verifiable contact phone number. The documentation must be provided to your instructor immediately. A valid excuse will allow you to take a make-up exam.

Students who need special accommodations due to a disability must carry out the DRC procedures described below.


Each quiz in your discussion section is typically based on (though not necessarily identical to) a homework problem from the homework turned in Monday of that week. The particular problem given in each discussion section is chosen at random and thus its difficulty will vary throughout the semester. Quizzes are given only on Tuesday or Wednesday.

Approved make-ups for missed quizzes will take place at the first opportunity determined by your TA according to the absence and makeup policy stated above. The documentation must be provided to your TA within 1 week of the missed quiz or a rational reason that it will be delayed must be e-mailed along with the projected receipt date of the documentation to your TA within that period. All quizzes must be made up within two weeks.

Your quiz grade = 20 * (total quiz points / 0.9 / max points). The 0.9 is a "forgiveness factor" to account for bad days, etc. The maximum grade cannot exceed 20.00.


Homework is based on the MasteringPhysics online homework system and assignments are due Tuesdays at 6AM (see schedule). Each student gets a unique set of numbers for each problem. Because of the length of time each homework set is available, there are no extensions on the homework. You are strongly encouraged to start entering your answers well ahead of the deadline to avoid possible technical problems that might occur on the day the homework is due. If an unforeseen technical difficulty like a down internet connection or computer virus causes you to miss the deadline, you will not receive credit for the unfinished work.

Your homework grade = 5 * (total homework points / 0.9 / max points). The 0.9 is a "forgiveness factor" to account for bad days, etc. The maximum grade cannot exceed 5.00.

Homework and academic honesty: While we encourage students to discuss homework problems with one another, we regard it as a breach of academic honesty to get homework solutions or algorithms external sources, including websites or companies that give away or sell such solutions or algorithms (this is stated explicitly in our course Academic Honesty policy found below).

H-ITT extra credit

Answering questions during lectures is optional using the H-ITT response system, but can earn up to a maximum of 2.5 extra credit points on your grade. 

For each H-ITT question, you receive 2 points for a correct answer and 1 point for a wrong answer. When you respond to a question, your remote identification number will appear on the screen to show you that your remote is working. As shown in the above table, we calculate your HITT grade by first dividing your raw points by 0.8 to allow for absences, broken remotes, late answers, etc. However, to receive credit for your responses, your remote number must be registered. Please see the HITT page.

You can expect some technical problems during the semester such as having a dead battery in your remote (or no network service if using "SoftClick"). You are responsible for maintaining the functioning of your remote. No credit will be given for questions if you forget your remote or it is not working or you do not respond to the question in the allotted time. You may not bring anyone else's transmitter to class if that person is also taking this course. Doing so violates our Academic Honesty policy below, and the incident will be filed with the Dean of Student's Office.

Very important: You can use your HITT transmitter in either of the two class periods, but not both. Once you register for the period you want, your points will accumulate only for that period (just because your box shows on the screen doesn't mean that the points are assigned to your name). You will not get credit for points accumulated in the other period. The reason for this is that that the periods are graded independently: we use different questions and even different numbers of questions for each period.

Discussion Section Participation Bonus

Discussion sections are designed to promote collaborative group problem solving while practicing the skills necessary to become successful in solving physics problems on your own. To reward your efforts, your discussion section TA will award weekly participation bonus points for your collaborative work in solving problems assigned to your group. TAs will create groups of 4 students, with each group receiving a problem to solve together on the board. TAs will monitor and answer questions, as well as ask specific students in the group to explain or justify decisions made by the group in arriving at a solution. 

Each week, you may earn points based on your participation and group's success. These points will sum over the course of the semester and will determine your individual participation bonus. This bonus will be added to your overall course grade. As shown in the above table, we calculate your participation bonus by first dividing your raw points by 0.8 to allow for absences. You can't makeup missed participation bonus points with a group, nor complete alternate assignments to replace missed bonus points. Remember, this is not a course requirement, but an encouragement to participate in these meaningful exercises to gain both feedback and confidence in your problem solving ability.


The lectures notes and this semester's exam solutions will be posted in the Files section and linked from the Schedule Page. Scores on homework, exams, and quizzes will be posted in the Grades section.


Homework is delivered and scored using MasteringPhysics. Access to MasteringPhysics is granted through the AllAccess program, offering billing directly to your student account with the benefit of access to both the e-text and homework system on the first day of the semester. 

You can access MasteringPhysics by clicking on a homework assignment listed on the Assignments page, from the ToDo list, from the Course Calendar, or by clicking on the MyMastering link in the sidebar. 

Details about Homework Assignments, Grading, and Late Policy

  • Most problems come from the textbook, though the values for masses, charges, angles, etc. for each problem are different for each student. We expect to have some problems which might not come from the textbook.
  • You have five attempts to get the correct answer. To get credit your answer must be correct within 2% and you must enter at least three significant digits.
  • Multiple choice and True/False question types. The points you can earn for correct submissions decreases by a constant amount for each attempt. The decrease per step is 100% / (Noptions-1). Thus for a 5 part multiple choice question, the decrease in value is 25% per attempt.
  • For all other question types, there is a 5% deduction in the number of points you can earn for each wrong submission. There is also a small (1%) deduction for every hint or feedback you request.
  • There are no extensions on homework assignments.
  • Additional Ungraded Practice Assignments are curated and arranged by textbook chapter, as an option for study and self-assessment. These are found in the Assignments section, but note they do not appear in your To-Do list until the very end of the term, so that you can practice these questions at any point during the semester. These additional practice assignments are not required, meaning exam questions are not based from these items. Any overlap is purely coincidental.


Information about the exams (chapters covered, times, allowed materials, etc.) can be found on the Exams page.

Week Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
1 1/9

Observations from Static Electricity


Discussion Section Meetings Begin Today!

Quiz 0
Ch 20:1-3
Electric Forces

Quiz 0

WF discussion sections do not meet on 1/11

2 1/14

Ch 20 4-5
Electric Fields

HW 1
Quiz 1

Quiz 1
Ch 20 6-7
Conductors and Insulators in Fields

3 1/21

Ch 21 1-2
Electric Potential and Electric Potential Energy
HW 2
Quiz 2

Quiz 2
Ch 21 3-6
Calculating Electric Potential, Energy Conservation

4 1/28

Ch 21 3-6
Electric Potential, Equipotential surfaces, Capacitance

HW 3
Quiz 3

Quiz 3
Capacitors, Dielectrics, Energy in Capacitors

5 2/4


Currents and EMF

HW 4
Quiz 4

Quiz 4
Ohm's Law, Resistance, Power and Energy; 


6 2/11 

Circuits, Kirchhoff's Laws, Resistors in Series

HW 5
Quiz 5

Exam 1

Quiz 5
Resistors in Parallel and Combination; Capacitor Arrangements

7 2/18

RC Circuits

HW 6
Quiz 6 

Quiz 6
Magnetic Fields



8 2/25

Magnetic Forces

HW 7
Quiz 7

Quiz 7

Torques from Magnetic Fields
9 Spring Break
10 3/11 

Motional emf

HW 8
Quiz 8

Quiz 8
Faraday's and Lenz's Laws

11 3/18

EM Waves; EM Spectrum

HW 9
Quiz 9

Exam 2

Quiz 9
AC Circuits; Transformers; Household Electricity

12 3/25

Superposition, Double Slit Interference

HW 10
Quiz 10


Quiz 10
Diffraction Gratings, Thin Films

13 4/1

Single-Slit and Circular Aperture Diffraction

HW 11
Quiz 11

Quiz 11
Reflection & Refraction

14 4/8 4/9
Apparent depth; images from plane & spherical mirrors; principal rays

HW 12
Quiz 12


Quiz 12
18.4-5, 18.7
Images from thin lens; principal rays
15 4/15 4/16
Optical Instruments: Camera, Magnifier, Eye, Dispersion, Rainbow, Telescope, Microscope

HW 13
Quiz 13

Quiz 13
Optical Instruments (cont)

16 4/22

Optical Instruments: Resolution

HW 14

Reading Days

Reading Days

17 4/29

Final Exam


Academic Honesty Policy and Honor Code


We go to great lengths to ensure that our Physics course is administered fairly, by setting clear goals (what is needed to attain each grade) at the outset, by providing materials (lectures, applets, homework, office hours, reviews) to help you reach those goals, and by assessing progress towards those goals using easily understood procedures (exams, quizzes, H-ITT, online homework). We pledge to do the best job we can to make the material understandable and to bring out the best in every student.

Course Policy

Maintaining the integrity of the grading process demands fairness and compassion on our part and honor on your part. Accordingly, we take a very hard line on cheating in any form, including

  1. Providing or copying answers on exams or quizzes
  2. Taking an exam or quiz for another student
  3. Entering online homework answers for another student
  4. Obtaining course homework solutions or software algorithms from external sources, including websites or companies that give away or sell such solutions or algorithms.

Any person caught cheating in any form will fail the entire course automatically and will be subject to Honor Court penalties. Furthermore, we expect students to not tolerate cheating of any kind and to report incidents to your instructors.

Honor Code

The Dean of Students Office website has a detailed discussion about academic honesty and the University of Florida Honor Code, which was adopted by the Student Council. The Honor Code says

We, the members of the University of Florida community, pledge to hold ourselves and our peers to the highest standards of honesty and integrity. On all work submitted for credit by students at the University of Florida, the following pledge is either required or implied:

"On my honor, I have neither given nor received unauthorized aid in doing this assignment."

Disability Services

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. Requests for entitled testing accommodations will be granted if this documentation is submitted to the instructor at least five business days before the next scheduled exam. Accommodations will then go into effect for the remainder of the term, or until an updated accommodation letter is submitted to the instructor.

Please schedule accommodation requests for a proctored exam at least one week before the first exam. This scheduled exam should overlap with the time at which the exam is given during the assembly exams.

The Accommodated Testing Service (ATS) at DCR will administer all exams requiring accommodations. It is your responsibility to follow testing center policies when scheduling each exam (schedule at least one week before the exam). If you choose to not schedule exams before the deadline, you are electing to forgo the testing accommodations to which you are entitled and will take the exam according to the conditions of the regularly scheduled exam. It is strongly advised to schedule proctored exams with the DRC as soon as possible, using the course calendar as a guide for the dates of your exams. Failure to schedule a proctoring session with the DRC according to the DRC policies is not a permitted excuse for taking a makeup exam.

Online Course Evaluation

Students are expected to provide feedback on the quality of instruction in this course by completing online evaluations at Evaluations are typically open during the last two or three weeks of the semester, but students will be given specific times when they are open. Summary results of these assessments are available to students at

Campus Resources

Health and Wellness

U Matter, We Care:
If you or a friend is in distress, please contact or 352 392- 1575 so that a team member can reach out to the student.

Counseling and Wellness Center:, 392-1575; and the University Police Department: 392-1111 or 9-1-1 for emergencies.

Sexual Assault Recovery Services (SARS) Student Health Care Center, 392-1161.

University Police Department, 392-1111 (or 9-1-1 for emergencies).

Academic Resources

E-learning technical support, 352-392-4357 (select option 2) or e-mail to Learning-

Career Resource Center, Reitz Union, 392-1601. Career assistance and counseling.

Library Support, Various ways to receive assistance with respect to using the libraries or finding resources.

Teaching Center, Broward Hall, 392-2010 or 392-6420. General study skills and tutoring.

Writing Studio, 302 Tigert Hall, 846-1138. Help brainstorming, formatting, and writing papers.

Student Complaints:

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.

Course Summary:

Date Details