(REVISED 9/7/01)

                         (Supercedes rules in Laboratory Manual)



Physics 121/122

Laboratory: Fall 2001

Instructor:    Prof. Wendell T. Hill, III                              Phone:          5-4813

Office:            2117 IPST Bldg.                                          Email:  


Text:                          Fundamentals of Physics I:  Laboratory Manual Physics 121 or Fundamentals of Physics II:  Laboratory Manual Physics 122


Attendance:             Students are expected to attend the laboratory section for which they are registered.


                                    Ten (10) experiments are scheduled.  All 10 experiments must be completed to pass the course.  If you miss even one lab, you will fail the entire course (including the lecture/recitation portion) regardless of how good your test scores might be.


Preparation:                        To ensure efficient use of lab time, it is essential for students to study the lab  manual before class.  In many cases it will then be possible to complete the lab report during the lab period.


                                    Prelab exercises, when called for, must be initialed by your TA at the beginning of the lab period.  These prelabs should be included in your lab report.


                                    Before the first meeting of your lab, please do the following: 

1.      read and familiarize yourself with the introductory material in the lab manual and

2.      read and prepare the prelab for the first lab, Experiment I.


Procedures:                        At the start of the lab, the TA will notify you which parts of the procedure will be done and what constitutes a lab report.  This may differ from what is described in the manual.  Students are expected to spend the entire two-hour period in the lab. You should work on your write-up if you finish early.


                                    Data sheets must be initialed by the TA before the end of the period.


Lab Reports:           Lab reports:

·        must contain your name and the name of your partner.

·        must include data sheet(s) initialed by your TA.

·        should include an prelab or quiz initialed by your TA.

·        must be your own written report (you cannot simply copy your partner’s report.)


                                    Lab reports will be absolutely “bare bones”, often just the data, relevant equations, plots and enough prose to make your report intelligible.  Long discussions are to be avoided.  Do not reproduce large sections of the lab manual in your lab report! Reports should be neat but not necessarily gorgeous or “professional looking”. 


                                    Where possible, lab reports are to be turned in at the end of the lab period.  The final due date is the lab period following the one in which the experiment was done (one week, except for Thanksgiving).  After this date, your lab report will be marked “completed” but will receive no points unless prior arrangements were made with the TA or instructor. Your TA will inform you each week what the due date will be.


                                    Lab reports should be submitted to the TA during lab or to the locked box outside Room 3112, but not to the bins outside the TA offices.


Grading:                   Each lab is worth up to 25 points.  A correct prelab is worth 5 points.  In cases where there is no prelab, there will be a quiz to determine if you read and studied the lab.  The quiz will be worth 5 points and consist of two parts:

1.      What is the purpose of the lab?  (2 pts)

2.      Describe one procedure you will do in this lab.  (3 pts)

The quiz will last two or three minutes and will be given at the beginning of the class.  There will be no make-up quizzes!


                                    Labs will be graded on a “task” basis, with satisfactory completion of the task getting full credit and subtractions occurring due to failure to do the task or doing it substantially incorrectly.  The emphasis is on completing the important elements and not fine-scale distinctions.


                                    TAs will grade and return lab reports as quickly as possible and hopefully no later than 2 weeks after the lab was performed.  Students should keep their graded lab reports until they receive a final course grade.


Make-Up Weeks:    If you must miss a scheduled lab because of illness, religious observance, or other valid reason, you may perform that lab during one of the two make-up weeks.  Note: The first make-up session will be for Experiments 1 - 4, & 7; the second make-up session will be for Experiments 5, 7 & 8 - 10 only.  Students can make up a lab during any of the regularly scheduled laboratory sessions during these make-up weeks, including those of other instructors.