PHYS-120: Technical Physics I

This course is INACTIVE
Science, Technology, Engineering and Math
Science - DNU
Academic Level
Course Subject
Course Number
Course Title
Technical Physics I
Credit Hours
Instructor Contact Hours Per Semester
77.00 (for 15-week classes)
Student Contact Hours Per Semester
77.00 (for 15-week classes)
Grading Method
Completion of or concurrent enrollment in MATH-103
Catalog Course Description

Introduces students majoring in technical areas to basic physical principles and their application to industry. Covers measurements, forces, motion, vectors, energy, power and machines, properties of materials and fluids, heat, and heat transfer.

Goals, Topics, and Objectives

Goal Statement

Technical physics is a course that is designed to meet the needs of students wishing to work in the surrounding community. The overall goal is to provide access to knowledge of physics and to emphasize habits that will serve students when they take a position of a technical nature.

Core Course Topics
  1. Kinematics of Motion: displacement, velocity, and acceleration
  2. Kinematics of Motion: free fall
  3. Vectors and vector addition
  4. Newton’s Laws of Motion
  5. Circular Motion
  6. Impulse and Momentum
  7. Work and Kinetic Energy
  8. Pressure and Density
  9. Simple Machines
  10. Elasticity and Young's Modulus
  11. Simple Harmonic Motion
Core Course Learning Objectives (Separated)

Upon successful completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate a competence in the general knowledge and understanding of physics.
  2. Apply physics concepts and problem solving skills to situations found in the workplace.
  3. Utilize graphs, diagrams, and the written word to effectively communicate ideas and information to others.
  4. Evaluate their understanding of physics through problem solving and laboratory experiments.
  5. Describe the motion of objects using displacement, velocity, and acceleration.
  6. Utilize spreadsheets to analyze the motion of objects in free fall.
  7. Apply the kinematics of motion to a trunk lid.
  8. Demonstrate how to add vectors together.
  9. Describe how forces affect the motion of an object.
  10. Define what it means for an object to be in equilibrium.
  11. Analyze how friction affects the motion of an object.
  12. Define a centripetal force and apply it to circular motion.
  13. Use the work energy and impulse momentum theorem to analyze the motion of a system of objects.
  14. Describe how the pressure varies within a fluid and how also depends on the density of the fluid.
  15. Determine how a strain gauge works and how its operation is related to Young’s Modulus.
  16. Analyze the motion of an object undergoing simple harmonic motion.

Assessment and Requirements

Assessment of Academic Achievement

Laboratory activities will be presented with an emphasis on hands on experiences and the use of software for microcomputer-based physics instruction. After every four labs there will be a criterion based test given in the laboratory.

General Course Requirements and Recommendations

This is a four credit course with three hours of lecture and two hours of laboratory per week. A student is expected to attend all class sections.


General Education Categories
  • Natural Sciences
Institutional Outcomes
  • Scientific Reasoning
MTA Categories
  • Category 6: Natural Sciences (Lecture and Lab)
Satisfies Wellness Requirement
Effective Term
Fall 2023