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Syllabus for  West Branch Physics

 Goals and Objectives: The course is meant as an introductory to the principles and practices of Physics in the modern world.  The course topics that are stressed are kinematics, forces, energy, momentum, gravitation, and waves using algebra and advanced math skill.  Emphasis will be on reasoning behind these concepts, and developing critical thinking skills that use the scientific method in answering questions of physics. 

Grades:   Grades will be determined by tests, quizzes, homework, labwork and projects.  The West Branch grading scale of ...A-93-100;  B-85-92;  C-75-84;  D-65-74, and F- 0-64 will be used to determine grades in this course.  No extra credit is given except for the 3rd nine weeks for YSU physics olympics attendance at the university. 

**No late assignmenst are accepted. 

**Assignments that have been assigned with advanced notice will still be required when returning from an absence.  Ex.  An assignment given on Monday and due on Friday will still be required on Friday despite an absence during the week. 

Academic Honesty will be expected and adhered to for all circumstances.    Please read your student handbook which details all school policies.   You are expected to read and understand all  policies, requirements, and consequences.  The consequenses of breaking any rule or guideline will be determined by school policy and administration/teacher recommendation.   ***Mr. Buckley has the right to determine what is considered misconduct based on reasonable expectations of a high school credit course.  i.e.  Copying someone else's work would be considered plagerism and likewise, allowing others to use your work would be considered a violation of WB policy despite the specific misconduct not being listed in the school policy or class rules.  What would be considered appropriate behavior is expected...when in doubt...ask first. 

Students with IEP's

If you have a documented IEP and feel as if your accomidations are not being met to obtain equal access in this course, please contact me privately to discuss your specific needs.   


Specific Topics that will be covered

Please see "Physics Curriculum Map" for specific time frames and learning targets.


  1. Chapter 1: Introduction, Measurement, Estimating
    • The Nature of Science
    • Physics and its Relation to other Fields
    • Models, Theories, and Laws
    • Measurement and Uncertainty; Significant Figures
    • Units, Standards, and the SI System
    • Converting Units
    • Dimensional Analysis
  2. Chapter 2: Describing Motion: Kinematics in One Dimension
    • Position, displacement, velocity
    • Reference Frames
    • Constant Acceleration
    • Free Fall
    • Graphing Analysis of Linear Motion
  3. Chapter 3: Kinematics in Two Dimensions; Vectors
    • Vectors: addition using graphical and component methods
    • Vector Subtraction
    •  Projectiles
    •  Relative Velocity
  4. Chapter 4: Dynamics: Newton’s Laws of Motion
    • Force
    • Newton’s 1st law
    • Mass
    • Newton’s 2nd Law of Motion
    • Newton’s 3rd law
    • Weight-the Force of Gravity; and the Normal Force
    • Solving Problems with Newton’s laws: Free Body Diagrams
    • Problems involving Friction, Inclines
  5. Chapter 5: Circular Motion
    • Kinematics of Uniform Circular Motion
    • Dynamics of  Uniform Circular Motion
    • Highway Curves: Banked and Unbanked
    • Non-uniform Circular Motion
    • Newton’s Laws of Universal Gravitation
    • Weightlessness
  6. Chapter 6: Work and Energy
    • Work, Kinetic and Potential energy
    • Work done by Constant and Non-constant Forces
    • Conservative and Non-conservative Forces
    • Conservation of Energy
  7. Chapter 7: Linear Momentum
    • Impulse, center of mass, collisions in one and two dimensions
    • Conservation of Momentum
  8. Chapter 8: Rotational Motion
    • Rotational kinetic energy and inertia
    • Torque
    • Rotational Dynamics: Torque and Rotational Inertia
    • Rolling objects
  9. Chapter 9: Static Equilibrium: Elasticity and Fracture
    • The Conditions for Equilibrium
    • Solving Statics Problems
    • Stability and Balance
    • Elasticity: Stress and Strain
    • Fracture
  10. Chapter 11: Oscillations and Waves
    • Properties of waves
    • Simple Harmonic Motion-Spring Oscillations
    • Energy in a Simple harmonic Motion
    • Reflection; Refraction; and Diffraction
    • Standing Waves; Resonance
    • Periodic waves
  11. Chapter 12: Sound
    • Characteristics of Sound
    • Sound waves
    • Standing sound wave, beats, Doppler effect       


Text:  West Branch- Physics Principles and Problems        YSU- Physics: Principles with Applications, Author:  Douglass Giancoli  7th edition 2013

ResourcesThe Physics Classroom;   Lab book:  Physics with Venier
Practice problems will be provided from the YSU text to supplement our West Branch materials.  The YSU textbook will not need to be purchased.