99: Senior Seminar in Physics
Gustavus Adolphus College
Office: Olin 209, 933-7036
The GRE Physics Subject Test is a test of your problem solving
ability in a timed multiple-choice format. The only way to improve
your performance from the beginning of the semester to the end is
practice, practice, practice! You will find it beneficial to have a set
of memorized equations in your physics tool box. Groups of two students
will develop subject equation sheets for distribution to the rest of the
class. These sheets should have two columns: Equations and Context/Applicability
column indicating when and/or when not to use the equations.
In the class sessions, the students will lead discussions of problem
solving techniques and solutions to sample problems. Problem solving
techniques will also be discussed, including dimensional analysis,
dependence analysis (what variables should the solution depend on)
Course Policy and Evaluation
Class Meetings: The class will meet two days per week (TR)
for problem discussions. Students are expected
to have read assigned materials and worked assigned problems
before coming to class.
Attendance: Regular attendance at all classes is expected. Students
are responsible for informing themselves of all announcements and assignments
made in the classroom.
Students are expected to arrange in writing
with the instructor in advance if they will be absent from class.
Homework: Problems sets will be assigned
from each section of the GRE. These problems will be discussed at the next
class meeting. You must come prepared to discuss/present the solutions
before the class. No homework will be graded; the rewards of the homework will
be improved performance on the GRE exam.
Exams: There will be two 90 minute exams which
will be based on actual GRE questions. They will be graded and returned
for student use. Results will be confidential.
Evaluation: The final grade will be based on class participation/performance
and on improvement shown on the second exam. Attendance is required. Any
class missed without a valid reason and prior notification will result
in a half-letter grade deduction. You must take both exams
to complete the course.
- Introduction and Test Taking Strategies
- First Trial Exam
- Optics and Waves
- Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics
- Special Relativity
- Quantum Mechanics
- Other Modern Physics
- Laboratory Methods and Electronics
- Specialized Topics (Nuclear and Particle Physics, Condensed Matter Physics, ...)
- Second Trial Exam