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BSc/MEarthSci Earth and Planetary Sciences with an Integrated Foundation Year / Course details

Year of entry: 2021

Course unit details:
World of the Electron Phys 2

Unit code FOUN10111
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 1
Teaching period(s) Semester 1
Offered by Faculty of Science and Engineering
Available as a free choice unit? No


A course which will allow students to gain essential knowledge and understanding of physical, electrical and magnetic principles  


The aim is to allow students to gain essential knowledge and understanding of physical, electrical and magnetic principles.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course unit a student will be able to:

  • Describe the properties and interaction of electrically charged objects and electric fields, with reference to electrostatic forces, potential, potential energy and work.
  • Analyse simple DC circuits consisting of capacitors or resistors under steady state conditions.
  • Contrast the properties and behaviour of the common classes of magnetic materials (including superconductors).
  • Determine the characteristics of magnetic fields resulting from simple configurations of current-carrying conductors.
  • Describe the behaviour of moving charges or current-carrying conductors in magnetic fields (and its technological significance).
  • Explain, with examples, the consequences and implications of electromagnetic induction.
  • With reference to Bohr’s atomic model, account for the emission and absorption spectra of hydrogen.
  • Use the band theory of solids to explain the electronic properties of conductors, insulators and semiconductors and the role of doping in simple semiconductor devices (including the p-n junction).



Electrostatics, electric fields, electrical potential, energy and work.

Capacitors, resistors, DC circuits, electrical power.

Magnetic materials, superconductivity, magnetic fields and forces, motors.

Electromagnetic induction, Lenz’s law, generators and transformers.

Bohr’s hydrogen atom, absorption/emission, band theory of solids, semiconductors.


Teaching and learning methods

Lectures, tutorials, drop-in sessions, private study.


Assessment methods

Method Weight
Other 20%
Written exam 80%

Feedback methods

  • Formative feedback will be given during lectures, tutorials and drop-in sessions, also during 10-minute personal appointments by arrangement with the course instructor. Targeted feedback will be given following coursework assessments. Summative and formative feedback will be given following assessments, including the final exam (exam script viewing is encouraged).

Recommended reading

BIRD, J. 2005. Basic Engineering Mathematics [online book]. (ISBNO-7506-6575-0)
ADAMS, S. & ALLDAY, J. 2000. Advanced Physics. Oxford University Press, Oxford. (ISBN-10: 0199146802)
JOHNSON, K., et al. 2000. Advanced physics for you. Nelson Thornes, Cheltenham. (ISBN-10: 074875296X)
MUNCASTER, R., 1993. A-level physics (4th Edition). Stanley Thornes, Cheltenham. (ISBN:0748715843)
POPLE, S., 1998. Advanced physics through diagrams. Oxford University Press, Oxford. (ISBN: 9780199147212, 9780199147229, 0199147213)
AKRILL, T., BENNETT, G. & MILLAR, C., 2000. Practice in Physics (3rd Edition). Hodder & Stoughton Educational, London. (ISBN: 0340758139)
CUTNELL, J., & JOHNSON, K., 2005. Essentials of physics Hoboken, N.J. (ISBN: 0471713988) 

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Assessment written exam 2
Lectures 24
Tutorials 11
Independent study hours
Independent study 63

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Jonathan Sly Unit coordinator

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