College Preparatory Physics

This class will make extensive use of the class website at:

All of the homework assignments, class notes, lab activities and other useful and relevant links will be posted on that site.

This course is designed as a comprehensive introduction to mechanics, thermodynamics, wave motion and sound, electricity and magnetism, optics and modern physics.  Problem solving strategies and quantification are stressed throughout.


Grades are broken down into two categories: formative and summative assessments. The value or weight of any assignment is determined by the point value given to that assignment. Your grade is calculated by totaling the points earned for the quarter, and dividing by the total possible points. Summative assessments, consisting of both multiple choice and long answer questions, are graded numerically and will count toward the average in the course. Formative assessments will be either be scored or simply checked for completion. These formative assessments are used to prepare you for your summative assessments and your scores will be considered when completing the THS Behavioral Expectations Matrix.

Course Syllabus/Outline                         C.P. Physics 
                 Text:  Physics – Principles and Problems, Glencoe 

Unit One:  Understanding Motion (~52 days)
Lab safety 
Motion (basics) – chapters 2 & 3
Vectors – chapter 4
Motion – math description – chapter 5
Forces – chapter 6
Force Laws, Gravitation – chapters 7 & 8

Major Assessments
Chapters 2 & 3 test
Chapter 4 test
Chapter 5test
Chapter 6 test
Chapters 7 & 8 test
Major Lab:  Newton’s 2nd Law (tentatively)

Unit Two: Energy (~10 days)
Energy and Power – chapters 10 & 11
Thermal Energy – chapter 12 (in part)

Major Assessments
Chapters 10 -12 test

Unit Three: Waves and Sound(~ 13 days)
Waves and Energy transfer – chapter 14
Sound – chapter 15

Major Assessments
Chapters 14 & 15 test

Unit Four:  Light and Optics (~8 days)
Light – chapter 16 (in part)
Reflection & Refraction – chapter 17 (in part)
Mirrors & Lenses – chapter 18 (in part)
Diffraction Interference – chapter 19 (in part)

Major Assessments
Chapters 16 -19 test
Major Lab:  Optics

Unit Five:  Electricity & Magnetism (~ 7 days)
Static Electricity – chapter 20
Electric Fields – chapter 21 (in part)
Series & Parallel Circuits – chapter 22 (in part) & chapter 23 (in part)
Magnetic fields – chapter 24 (in part)
Electromagnetic Induction – chapter 25 (in part)

Major Assessments
Chapters 20 & 21 test
Chapters 22 – 25 test