# FUNDAMENTALS OF PHYSICS - 2025/6

Module code: PHY1033

## Module Overview

This module covers some of the fundamental principles in classical physics including a discussion of units of measurement, the kinematics and dynamics of objects and conservation laws. This material revises and builds upon concepts that are first encountered in the A-level physics course and the study of mechanics as part of A-level mathematics.

### Module provider

Mathematics & Physics

SHENTON-TAYLOR Caroline (Maths & Phys)

### Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Independent Learning Hours: 48

Lecture Hours: 30

Tutorial Hours: 10

Laboratory Hours: 22

Guided Learning: 20

Captured Content: 20

Semester 1

None

## Module content

Indicative content includes:

• Space, Time and Mass

SI units, multiples and submultiples of units, the units of length, mass and time, c, as a standard speed, dimensions in equations of physics. Derived units for important physical quantities, orders of magnitude, estimation and significant figures.

• Representation of Physical Quantities

Physical quantities represented as scalars and vectors, simple operations involving vector quantities, position as a vector quantity, components, magnitudes and units, rate of change of position and velocity.

• The Usefulness of the Vector Representation

The scalar and vector product, the right-hand rule, examples of the use of the vector product, description as a 3x3 determinant and the scalar triple product as the volume of a solid.

• General Kinematics

Position, velocity and acceleration, motion with constant acceleration, graphical representation and dealing with infinitesimal changes.

• General Dynamics

Newton's Laws, force and momentum, principle of superposition of forces, frictional forces and the four fundamental forces in nature.

• Conservation Laws

Conservative forces, work done, potential and kinetic energy, the electron volt as a unit of energy, conservation of mechanical energy, conservation of momentum, conservation of energy, application to systems of particles, centre-of-mass and centre-of-mass velocity, conservation of charge, Kirchoff’s laws. Conservation in 2-body collisions, mass and energy, E = mc2.

• Rotational Motion

Uniform circular motion, angular and centripetal acceleration, rotation of a solid about a fixed axis, moment of inertia, angular momentum and torque, conservation of angular momentum and the behavior of the gyroscope.

• Gravity

Newton’s law of gravitation, gravity near the earth’s surface, gravitational potential energy, shell theorem, Kepler's laws

• Electromagnetism

Introduction to electric charge.

• Summary lectures

## Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework SMALL GROUP TUTORIAL SESSION QUESTIONS (SURREYLEARN) 10
Coursework Laboratory Assessment across semester 1 20
Examination EXAMINATION 2 HRS 70

None

## Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

·         recall of subject knowledge

·         ability to apply individual components of subject knowledge to basic situations

·         ability to synthesise and apply combined areas of subject knowledge to physics problems

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

small group tutorial questions

laboratory diary entries on selected experiments. The average mark of laboratories needs to be above 40% in order to pass the module.

final examination (2h) with section A of 5 short compulsory questions and section B of longer questions with 2/3 questions to be answered

Formative assessment and feedback

Students tackle formative problems in small group tutorials and receive verbal feedback during those sessions.  In semester laboratories provides a contribution to the module assessment, and provides feedback before the final summative assessment.

## Module aims

• provide knowledge and understanding on the fundamental principles of classical physics.
• remind students of standard SI units and the role of the vector and scalar representation of physical quantities.
• inform students about the motion of particles and solids under different conditions as governed by Newton's Laws.
• discuss the conservation laws on which classical physics is based.
• provide an introduction to electromagnetism.

## Learning outcomes

 Attributes Developed 001 Demonstrate a grounding in the fundamental principles of classical physics. K 002 Treat physical problems within a mathematical framework. CT 003 Apply concepts of classical physics in mechanics and basic inverse-square law fields. KCT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

## Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

• equip students with subject knowledge

• develop skills in applying subject knowledge to physical situations

• enable student to tackle unseen problems in classical physics

The learning and teaching methods include:

•  Lectures

• Problems included in Small Group Tutorial sessions shared with PHY1036

• Laboratory Classes shared with PHY1036 which are supported by guided learning.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: PHY1033

## Other information

The School of Mathematics and Physics is committed to developing graduates with strengths in Employability, Digital Capabilities, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Sustainability, and Resourcefulness and Resilience. This module is designed to allow students to develop knowledge, skills, and capabilities in the following areas:

Resourcefulness and Resilience Students are introduced to problem solving both individually in the assessed coursework, and as small groups in the experimental laboratories and small-group tutorial sessions. A key aim of the module is to show how principles can be applied to a range of problem solving activities within classical mechanics.

Employability Students are shown how to draw from multiple pieces of information in order to successfully solve read-world problems, this requires learners to adapt and combine course content. Through laboratory pair-work, students will gain skills in practical experimental practices and develop problem solving strategies.

## Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Physics BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Astronomy BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Nuclear Astrophysics BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Quantum Computing BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Nuclear Astrophysics MPhys 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Astronomy MPhys 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics MPhys 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Physics with Quantum Computing MPhys 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Mathematics and Physics BSc (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Mathematics and Physics MPhys 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Mathematics and Physics MMath 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2025/6 academic year.