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Professor Kenneth Ragan Reviews

2

Class Ratings

4Good Class
3Avg. Difficulty
5Very Interesting
5Very Useful

Professor Rating

5Amazing Prof

Prof: Kenneth Ragan / Fall 2020

Dec 23, 2021

Comments on the course

This is the first introductory physics course taken by all STEM students in U0. It reviews, explores in more depth, and builds off the grade 12 physics course in high school. Rather than learning the material during lectures, students are assigned weekly readings. The readings are supposed to provide the fundamentals of the topic, while lectures are for solving example problems and asking questions. This made the workload for this course heavier than most. The assignments, quizzes, and final were also on the more difficult side.

Course Content

Miscellaneous: units, dimensional analysis, uncertainties, SigFigs. Kinematics: linear, rotational, projectile, and relative motion, scalar and vector methods Dynamics: Newtonian mechanics, friction, tension, centripetal, and spring-mass systems, reaction forces, torque, static and dynamic equilibrium. Work, Energy, and Power: Work-Energy Theorem, conservation of energy. Momentum: conservation of momentum, impulse, collisions, center of mass, moment of inertia, Parallel Axis Theorem. Gravitation: Kepler's Laws, Newtonian Gravitation, gravitational potential, orbits, gravitational fields. Simple Harmonic Motion: springs, Hooke's Law, oscillations. Waves: types of waves, wave equations, reflection, transmission, Superposition Principle.

Comments on the professor

A professor with a reputation of being very knowledgeable, but also very demanding. His explanations can be a bit "advanced", but he is more than willing to slow things down for you. Feel free to discuss more advanced physics with him, as he likes to go off-topic at times during lecture to show how this course is related to modern physics. Weekly CAPA assignments featured many challenging questions. The usual midterm was replaced with a series of quizzes, which were all quite difficult. The final exam was most difficult. The labs were quite interesting, but fairly time-consuming to setup and perform, since students had to procure their own lab materials during COVID.

Advice

Finish the assigned readings early, and make sure to post comments on it as participation here counts for marks. Try and do the CAPA problems with others. Attend tutorials. These will hopefully prepare you for the very difficult quizzes and final.

Course: PHYS 131Delivery: OnlineGrade: AWorkload: HeavyTextbook Use: Yes
Assignment HeavyQuiz HeavyExam Heavy
2

Class Ratings

4.3Good Class
3Avg. Difficulty
5Very Interesting
5Very Useful

Prof: Kenneth Ragan / Fall 2020

Mar 15, 2021

Comments on the course

If you took the highest level physics course offered at your high school then most of the content should be review. If did not do well in high school physics then this course will be more challenging as content is deeper and more expansive; i.e you learn mostly linear motion in high school, now we also cover rotational motion.

Advice

Read the assigned readings as soon as possible because he doesn't 'teach' it in class -- rather he skims over it and does examples and thought experiments based on what you should've covered in the readings. Try and get high grades in labs and homework to cover for formal evaluations, since his quizzes and exams are pretty difficult (the questions are usually based off of the challenge questions he puts on his slides / homework).

Course: PHYS 131Grade: AAttendance: Non-MandatoryTextbook Use: Yes