Important: Please see the UNC Course Catalog for full details on the courses below.

PHYSICS

PHYS 51. First-Year Seminar: The Interplay of Music and Physics. 3 Credits. Acoustics and music from a practical standpoint.

PHYS 52. First-Year Seminar: Making the Right Connections. 3 Credits. This seminar investigates the multiple roles that computers and microprocessors perform in scientific investigations and the impact of technological advances on society. Students perform experiments, take field trips to research laboratories, and gain hands-on experience with computer-based instrumentation.

PHYS 53. First-Year Seminar: Handcrafting in the Nanoworld: Building Models and Manipulating Molecules. 3 Credits. This seminar provides a general introduction to nanoscience and nanotechnology, focusing on recent advances in molecular electronics, nanomaterials, and biomedical research. Course activities include group model-building projects, presentations, and discussions of reading material

PHYS 54. First-Year Seminar: Physics of Movies. 3 Credits. Students watch and analyze short movie clips that demonstrate interesting, unusual, or impossible physics. Group analysis emphasized.

PHYS 61. First-Year Seminar: The Copernican Revolution. 3 Credits.This seminar explores the 2,000-year effort to understand the motion of the sun, moon, stars, and five visible planets. Earth-centered cosmos gives way to the conclusion that earth is just another body in space. Cultural changes accompany this revolution in thinking.

PHYS 63. First-Year Seminar: Catastrophe and Chaos: Unpredictable Physics. 3 Credits. Physics is often seen as the most precise and deterministic of sciences. Determinism can break down, however. This seminar explores the rich and diverse areas of modern physics in which “unpredictability” is the norm. Honors version available

PHYS 89. First-Year Seminar:Special Topics. 3 Credits. Special Topics course. Content will vary each semester.

PHYS 100. How Things Work. 3 Credits. Demystifying the working of objects such as CD players, microwave ovens, lasers, computers, roller coasters, rockets, light bulbs, automobiles, clocks, copy machines, X-ray and CAT-scan machines, and nuclear reactors.

PHYS 101. Basic Concepts of Physics. 4 Credits.Basic principles of physics with introduction to quantum physics, atoms, nuclei, and relativity. Not to be taken for credit after PHYS 104-105 or 114-115 or 116-117 or 118-119. Three lecture and two laboratory hours a week.

PHYS 102. General Physics Lecture I. 3 Credits. Lecture portion of 104, awarded as AP credit.

PHYS 103. General Physics Lecture II. 3 Credits. Lecture portion of 105, awarded as AP credit.

PHYS 104. General Physics I. 4 Credits. permission of the instructor for students lacking the requisite. Three lecture hours and two laboratory hours a week. Students may not receive credit for both PHYS 104 and PHYS 114, 116, or 118.
Requisites: Pre- or corequisite, MATH 130;

PHYS 105. General Physics II. 4 Credits. permission of the instructor for students lacking the requisite. Three lecture hours and two laboratory hours a week. Students may not receive credit for both PHYS 105 and PHYS 115, 117, or 119.
Requisites: Pre- or corequisite, PHYS 104;

PHYS 106. Inquiry into the Physical World. 4 Credits. A hands-on/minds-on approach to learning the basic concepts of physical science. Emphasis will be placed on examining the nature of science, your own learning, and the way scientists learn science.

PHYS 108. Our Energy and Climate Crises: Challenges and Opportunities. 4 Credits. Students quantify global depletion of energy resources and accompanying environmental degradation, discovering the profound changes in attitudes and behavior required to adjust to diminished fossil fuels and modified climate.

PHYS 114. General Physics I: For Students of the Life Sciences. 4 Credits. Basic principles of physics, including forces, energy, oscillations, sound, diffusion, and heat transfer, and applications to biological systems. Intended to meet the needs of, but not restricted to, students majoring in the life sciences. Students may not receive credit for PHYS 114 in addition to PHYS 104, 116, or 118.
Requisites: Prerequisite, MATH 231.

PHYS 115. General Physics II: For Students of the Life Sciences. 4 Credits. Basic principles of physics, including fluids, electricity, magnetism, optics, quantum physics, and nuclear physics, and applications to biological systems. Intended to meet the needs of, but not restricted to, students majoring in the life sciences. Students may not receive credit for PHYS 115 in addition to PHYS 105, 117, or 119.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 114.

PHYS 116. Mechanics. 4 Credits. Mechanics of particles and rigid bodies. Newton’s laws; conservation principles. Oscillatory and wave motion. Sound. Lecture, recitation, and laboratory. Students may not receive credit for both PHYS 116 and PHYS 104, 114, or 118. Honors version available
Requisites: Prerequisite, MATH 231; pre- or corequisite, MATH 232; permission of the instructor for students lacking the requisites.

PHYS 117. Electromagnetism and Optics. 4 Credits. Electricity and magnetism; laws of Coulomb, Ampere, and Faraday. Electromagnetic oscillations and waves. Light; diffraction and interference. Lecture, recitation, and laboratory. Students may not receive credit for both PHYS 117 and PHYS 105, 115, or 119. Honors version available
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 232 and PHYS 116; pre- or corequisite, MATH 233; permission of the instructor for students lacking the requisites.

PHYS 118. Introductory Calculus-based Mechanics and Relativity. 4 Credits. Mechanics of particles and rigid bodies. Newton’s laws; mechanical and potential energy; mechanical conservation laws; frame-dependence of physical laws; Einstein’s Theory of Relativity. Lecture and studio. Students may not receive credit for PHYS 118 in addition to PHYS 104, 114, or 116.
Requisites: Prerequisite, MATH 231; pre- or corequisite, MATH 232; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 119. Introductory Calculus-based Electromagnetism and Quanta. 4 Credits. Unification of the laws of electricity and magnetism; electromagnetic waves; the particle-wave duality; fundamental principles and applications of quantum mechanics. Lecture and studio. Students may not receive credit for PHYS 119 in addition to PHYS 105, 115, or 117.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 232 and PHYS 118; pre- or corequisite, MATH 233; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 128. Modern Physics. 3 Credits. Special relativity theory, black body radiation, photons and electrons; wave particle duality. Elements of atomic theory, nuclei and fundamental particles. Three lecture hours a week.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 117 (or PHYS 105 by permission of the instructor); co-requisite, PHYS 128L.

PHYS 128L. Modern Physics Laboratory. 1 Credit. Pre- or Selected modern physics experiments. Written research reports and oral presentations. Three laboratory hours a week.
Requisites: co-requisite, PHYS 128.

PHYS 131. Energy: Physical Principles and the Quest for Alternatives to Dwindling Oil and Gas. 3 Credits. A quantitative exploration of the physical principles behind energy development and use within modern civilization, the stark impact of depleted fossil fuel reserves, and alternative sources.
Requisites: Corequisite, PHYS 131L.

PHYS 131L. Energy: Physical Principles and the Quest for Alternatives to Dwindling Oil and Gas. 1 Credit. Explore renewable and nonrenewable energy sources. Three laboratory hours per week.
Requisites: Corequisite, PHYS 131.

PHYS 132. Science and Society. 3 Credits. A description of the scientific community and how scientists relate to such sociotechnical issues as the space program, the arms race, the energy problem, computer technology, medical technology, and pseudosciences.

PHYS 133. How Bio Works. 3 Credits. Physics of biology and biotechnology. Life as an assembly of molecular machines that manipulate DNA, replicate cells, propel bacteria, and contract muscles. Nanotechnology for DNA biotechnology and microscale fluid chips.

PHYS 201. Basic Mechanics. 3 Credits. A one-semester course in statics, kinematics, simple harmonic motion, central forces, and applications from modern physics.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 233 and one of PHYS 105, 115, 117, 119; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 211. Intermediate Electromagnetism. 3 Credits. Electric fields and potentials, dielectrics, steady currents, magnetic flux and magnetic materials, electromagnetic induction. Emphasis on Maxwell’s equations and their application to electromagnetic waves in bounded and unbounded media.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 233 and one of PHYS 105, 115, 117, 119.

PHYS 231. Physical Computing. 3 Credits. Course focuses on combining sensors and precision motions so that microcomputers can measure environmental conditions locally or worldwide via the Internet and manipulate that environment. Students propose a project, execute it with popular microcomputers, utilize three-dimensional design tools and printers, write a final report, and publish a demonstration on YouTube.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 114 or 118; pre- or co-requisite, PHYS 115 or 119.

PHYS 281L. Experimental Techniques in Physics. 2 Credits. Exploration of modern physics experiments, techniques, and data analysis to prepare students for research and advanced laboratory work. Written and oral reports with peer review. Meets four hours per week.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 119; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

PHYS 295. Research with Faculty Mentor I. 1-12 Credits. Research with a faculty mentor. Approved learning contract required.
Repeat rules: May be repeated for credit. 12 total credits. 4 total completions.

PHYS 311. Electromagnetism I. 3 Credits. Pre- or permission of the instructor for students lacking the requisite. Brief treatment of DC and AC circuit theory. Electrostatics: dielectrics, the magnetic field, magnetic materials. Maxwell’s equations and their application to electromagnetic waves.
Requisites: co-requisite, PHYS 358;

PHYS 313. Space and Time in Physics and Philosophy. 3 Credits. Contingent and necessary properties of space and time. The direction and flow of time. Fatalism. Effects preceding their causes.

PHYS 321. Introduction to Quantum Mechanics. 3 Credits. Origins of quantum theory. Uncertainty principle. Schroedinger equation for simple systems, including hydrogen atom. Perturbation theory. Spin. Identical particles.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 383; MATH 547 or PHYS 331; pre- or co-requisite, PHYS 401; permission of the instructor for students lacking the requisites.

PHYS 331. Introduction to Numerical Techniques in Physics. 4 Credits. Applications of calculus, vector analysis, differential equations, complex numbers, and computer programming to realistic physical systems. Three lecture and two computational laboratory hours per week.
Requisites: Prerequisite, one of PHYS 104, 114, 116, 118; pre- or co-requisite, MATH 383.

PHYS 351. Electronics I. 4 Credits. DC and AC circuit analysis. Diodes, transistor amplifiers, analog devices and signal conditioning. Boolean logic and digital logic circuits. Extensive practice designing and debugging circuits.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 233 and one of PHYS 105, 115, 117, 119; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 352. Electronics II. 4 Credits. Introduction to digital circuits: gates, flip-flops, and counters. Computers and device interconnections, converters and data acquisition. Signal analysis and digital filters. Graphical (LabVIEW) programming and computer interfacing. Individual projects and practical applications.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 351; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

PHYS 354. Quantum Mechanics, Weirdness, and Reality. 3 Credits. An interdisciplinary course on the weirdness of quantum mechanics and the problem of interpreting it. Nonlocality, the measurement problem, superpositions, Bohm’s theory, collapse theories, and the many-worlds interpretation.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 231 and any PHYS course numbered 100 or greater; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 358. Physical Modeling. 4 Credits. Modeling of celestial dynamics, nuclear physics problems, electrostatics; Monte Carlo integration in particle and theoretical physics; data modeling for physics and astronomy; gravitation, electromagnetism, fluid dynamics and quantum mechanics. Three lecture and two computational laboratory hours per week.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 331.

PHYS 391. Senior Seminar. 1-15 Credits. To be taken by seniors with permission of the department.

PHYS 395. Research with Faculty Mentor II. 1-12 Credits. Research with a faculty mentor. Approved learning contract required. Additionally, students write and submit a proposal to an internal or external competition for funding intended for students. They also give a poster or oral presentation on the topic of their research at an appropriate symposium or meeting. Honors version available
Repeat rules: May be repeated for credit. 12 total credits. 4 total completions.

PHYS 401. Mechanics I. 3 Credits. permission of the instructor for students lacking the requisites. Particle kinematics, central forces, planetary motions. Systems of particles, conservation laws, nonlinearity. Statics, motion of rigid bodies. Lagrange’s and Hamilton’s equations. Euler’s equations. Vibrations and waves.
Requisites: Pre- or corequisites, MATH 383 and PHYS 331;

PHYS 405. Biological Physics. 3 Credits. How diffusion, entropy, electrostatics, and hydrophobicity generate order and force in biology. Topics include DNA manipulation, intracellular transport, cell division, molecular motors, single molecule biophysics techniques, nerve impulses, neuroscience.
Requisites: Prerequisites, PHYS 116 and 117, or PHYS 118 and 119.

PHYS 410. Teaching and Learning Physics. 4 Credits. Learning how to teach physics using current research-based methods. Includes extensive fieldwork in high school and college environments. Meets part of the licensure requirements for North Carolina public school teaching.
Requisites: Prerequisites, PHYS 116 and 117, or PHYS 118 and 119; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 412. Electromagnetism II. 3 Credits. Brief treatment of DC and AC circuit theory. Electrostatics: dielectrics; the magnetic field; magnetic materials. Maxwell’s equations and their application to electromagnetic waves.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 311; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

PHYS 415. Optics. 3 Credits. Elements of geometrical optics; Huygens’ principles, interference, diffraction, and polarization. Elements of the electromagnetic theory of light; Fresnel’s equations, dispersion, absorption, and scattering. Photons. Lasers and quantum optics.
Requisites: Prerequisites, PHYS 311 and 412; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 422. Physics of the Earth’s Interior. 3 Credits. Origin of the solar system: the nebular hypothesis. Evolution of the earth and its accretionary history. Earthquakes: plate tectonics and the interior of the earth. The earth’s magnetic field. Mantle convection.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 383, and either PHYS 201 and 211 or 311 and 401.

PHYS 424. General Physics I. 4 Credits. This course is specifically for certification of high school teachers. Students may not receive credit for both PHYS 424 and PHYS 104 or 114.

PHYS 425. General Physics II. 4 Credits. This course is specifically for certification of high school teachers. Students may not receive credit for both PHYS 425 and PHYS 105 or 115.

PHYS 441. Thermal Physics. 3 Credits. Equilibrium statistical mechanics; the laws of thermodynamics, internal energy, enthalpy, entropy, thermodynamic potentials, Maxwell’s equations.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 233, and PHYS 117 or 119; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 471. Physics of Solid State Electronic Devices. 3 Credits. Properties of crystal lattices, electrons in energy bands, behavior of majority and minority charge carriers, PN junctions related to the structure and function of semiconductor diodes, transistors, display devices.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 117 or 119; pre- or corequisite, PHYS 211 or 311.

PHYS 472. Chemistry and Physics of Electronic Materials Processing. 3 Credits. Permission of the instructor. A survey of materials processing and characterization used in fabricating microelectronic devices. Crystal growth, thin film deposition and etching, and microlithography.
Requisites: Prerequisite, CHEM 482 or PHYS 117 or 119.

PHYS 481L. Advanced Laboratory I. 2 Credits. Selected experiments illustrating modern techniques such as the use of laser technology to study the interaction of electromagnetic fields and matter. Six laboratory hours a week.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 351 or 352; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 491L. Materials Laboratory I. 2 Credits. Structure determination and measurement of the optical, electrical, and magnetic properties of solids.
Requisites: Prerequisites, APPL 470 and PHYS 351.
Grading status: Letter grade

PHYS 492L. Materials Laboratory II. 2 Credits. Continuation of PHYS 491L with emphasis on low- and high-temperature behavior, the physical and chemical behavior of lattice imperfections and amorphous materials, and the nature of radiation damage.
Requisites: Prerequisite, APPL 491L or PHYS 491L.

PHYS 510. Seminar for Physics and Astronomy Teaching Assistants. 1 Credit. How students learn and understand physics and astronomy. How to teach using current research-based methods.

PHYS 521. Applications of Quantum Mechanics. 3 Credits. Emphasizes atomic physics but includes topics from nuclear, solid state, and particle physics, such as energy levels, the periodic system, selection rules, and fundamentals of spectroscopy.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 321.

PHYS 543. Nuclear Physics. 3 Credits. Structure of nucleons and nuclei, nuclear models, forces and interactions, nuclear reactions. .
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 321; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

PHYS 545. Introductory Elementary Particle Physics. 3 Credits. Relativistic kinematics, symmetries and conservation laws, elementary particles and bound states, gauge theories, quantum electrodynamics, chromodynamics, electroweak unification, standard model and beyond.
Requisites: Prerequisites, PHYS 321 and 412.

PHYS 573. Introductory Solid State Physics. 3 Credits. Crystal symmetry, types of crystalline solids; electron and mechanical waves in crystals, electrical and magnetic properties of solids, semiconductors; low temperature phenomena; imperfections in nearly perfect crystals.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 321; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

PHYS 581. Renewable Electric Power Systems. 3 Credits. Broad and quantitative study of renewable electric power systems: wind systems, photovoltaic cells, distributed generation (concentrating solar power, microhydro, biomass), and the economics of these technologies.
Requisites: Prerequisites, BIOL 101L, and 202 or 271; and PHYS 131, and 131L or 281L, and 201 or 401, and 211 or 311, and 351; pre- or corequisites, CHEM 261 and 481.

PHYS 582. Decarbonizing Fuels. 3 Credits. Assess quantitatively the feasibility of powering humanity without increasing release of climate-altering carbon dioxide and other organic greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Can these gases be removed? Which bio-chemical-physical novelties may scale to meet growing demand and at what cost?
Requisites: Prerequisites, BIOL 101L, and 202 or 271; and PHYS 131, and 131L or 281L, and 201 or 401, and 211 or 311, and 351; pre- or corequisites, CHEM 261 and 481.

PHYS 585. Imaging Science: From Cells to Stars. 3 Credits. Fundamentals of imaging as applied to biological, medical and astronomy imaging systems. Physics of radiation and particle sources, image formation and detection physics. Principles of optics, coherence, Fourier methods, statistics, especially as they cross disciplinary boundaries for new opportunities in imaging.
Requisites: Prerequisites, MATH 233 and PHYS 118.

PHYS 594. Nonlinear Dynamics. 3 Credits. Interdisciplinary introduction to nonlinear dynamics and chaos. Fixed points, bifurcations, strange attractors, with applications to physics, biology, chemistry, finance.
Requisites: Prerequisite, MATH 383; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

PHYS 631. Mathematical Methods of Theoretical Physics I. 3 Credits. Vector fields, curvilinear coordinates, functions of complex variables, linear differential equations of second order, Fourier series, integral transforms, delta sequence.
Requisites: Prerequisites, PHYS 281L and PHYS 358.

PHYS 632. Mathematical Methods of Theoretical Physics II. 3 Credits. Partial differential equations, special functions, Green functions, variational methods, traveling waves, and scattering.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 631; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

PHYS 633. Scientific Programming. 3 Credits. Required preparation, elementary Fortran, C, or Pascal programming. Structured programming in Fortran or Pascal; use of secondary storage and program packages; numerical methods for advanced problems, error propagation and computational efficiency; symbolic mathematics by computer.
Requisites: Prerequisite, MATH 528 or 529, or PHYS 631 or 632.

PHYS 660. Fluid Dynamics. 3 Credits. The physical properties of fluids, kinematics, governing equations, viscous incompressible flow, vorticity dynamics, boundary layers, irrotational incompressible flow.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 301; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

PHYS 671L. Independent Laboratory I. 3 Credits. Six laboratory hours a week.
Requisites: Prerequisites, PHYS 401 and 412; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 672L. Independent Laboratory II. 3 Credits. Six laboratory hours a week.
Requisites: Prerequisites, PHYS 401 and 412; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

PHYS 691H. Senior Honor Thesis Research I. 3 Credits. Permission of the instructor. Readings in physics and directed research for a senior honor thesis project. Required of all candidates for graduation with honors in physics.

PHYS 692H. Senior Honor Thesis Research II. 3 Credits. Readings in physics and directed research for a senior honor thesis project. Required of all candidates for graduation with honors in physics.
Requisites: Prerequisite, PHYS 691H.

ASTRONOMY

ASTR 61. First-Year Seminar: The Copernican Revolution. 3 Credits.
This seminar explores the 2,000-year effort to understand the motion of the sun, moon, stars, and five visible planets. Earth-centered cosmos gives way to the conclusion that earth is just another body in space. Cultural changes accompany this revolution in thinking.

ASTR 63. First-Year Seminar: Catastrophe and Chaos: Unpredictable Physics. 3 Credits.
Physics is often seen as the most precise and deterministic of sciences. Determinism can break down, however. This seminar explores the rich and diverse areas of modern physics in which “unpredictability” is the norm. Honors version available

ASTR 89. First-Year Seminar: Special Topics. 3 Credits.
Special topics course content will vary each semester.
Repeat rules: May be repeated for credit; may be repeated in the same term for different topics; 6 total credits. 2 total completions.

ASTR 101. Introduction to Astronomy: The Solar System. 3 Credits.
Celestial motions of the earth, sun, moon, and planets; nature of light; ground and space-based telescopes; comparative planetology; the earth and the moon; terrestrial and gas planets and their moons; dwarf planets, asteroids, and comets; planetary system formation; extrasolar planets; the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). Honors version available

ASTR 101L. Introduction to Astronomy Laboratory: Our Place in Space. 1 Credit.
Observing with robotic telescopes in Chile, Australia, and around the world: planets, dwarf planets, moons, asteroids, binary and variable stars, supernovae, star-forming regions, star clusters, and galaxies; the seasons, the Galilean revolution; the cosmic distance ladder; the Great Debate; dark matter; Hubble’s Law; dark energy.
Requisites: Pre- or corequisite, ASTR 101.

ASTR 102. Introduction to Astronomy: Stars, Galaxies & Cosmology. 3 Credits.
The sun, stellar observables, star birth, evolution, and death, novae and supernovae, white dwarfs, neutron stars, black holes, the Milky Way galaxy, normal galaxies, active galaxies and quasars, dark matter, dark energy, cosmology, early universe. Honors version available
Requisites: Prerequisite, ASTR 101, or pre- or co-requisite, PHYS 117 or 119; Permission of the instructor for students lacking the pre- or co-requisites.

ASTR 111L. Educational Research in Radio Astronomy. 1 Credit.
Permission of the instructor. One-week field experience at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Green Bank, WV, for experiential education (EE) credit. Observing with radio telescopes and antennae: supernova remnants, star-forming regions, normal and active galaxies, quasars, solar system objects (sun, moon, Jupiter), radio spectroscopy.

ASTR 205. The Medieval Foundations of Modern Cosmology. 3 Credits.
This course will examine science as it emerged and developed in the West starting in the 13th century. We will use example problems from cosmology that are relevant today.

ASTR 301. Stars, Galaxies, and Cosmology. 1 Credit.
Pre- or Permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites. Stellar observables; galaxies; novae; cosmology; the early universe. This one-credit course can be taken with ASTR 102 for students who wish to major or minor in astrophysics.
Requisites: co-requisites, ASTR 102, and PHYS 117 or 119;

ASTR 390. Research and Special Topics for Juniors and Seniors. 1-12 Credits.
Permission of the instructor. To be taken by honors candidates and other qualified juniors and seniors.
Repeat rules: May be repeated for credit. 12 total credits. 4 total completions.

ASTR 501. Astrophysics I (Stellar Astrophysics). 3 Credits.
An introduction to the study of stellar structure and evolution. Topics covered include observational techniques, stellar structure and energy transport, nuclear energy sources, evolution off the main-sequence, and supernovae.
Requisites: Prerequisites, ASTR 301, MATH 383, and PHYS 331; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisites.

ASTR 502. Astrophysics II (Modern Research in Astrophysics). 3 Credits.
An introduction to modern research in astrophysics based on scientific journal articles addressing a current topic of interest in galactic or extragalactic astrophysics, including training in computer modeling and statistical analysis, culminating in the completion of a research project.
Requisites: Prerequisites, ASTR 301 and MATH 383; pre- or corequisite, PHYS 331.

ASTR 503. Structure and Evolution of Galaxies. 3 Credits.
Internal dynamics and structure of galaxies; physics of star formation, active galactic nuclei, and galaxy interactions; large-scale clustering and environment-dependent physical processes; evolution of the galaxy population over cosmic time.
Requisites: Prerequisites, ASTR 301, MATH 383, and PHYS 331.

ASTR 504. Cosmology. 3 Credits.
An introduction to modern cosmology: the study of the contents and evolution of the universe. Covers expanding spacetime, the thermal history of the early universe, including nucleosynthesis and the cosmic microwave background, the inflationary model for the origins of cosmic structure, and the growth of that structure though time.
Requisites: Prerequisites, ASTR 301 and PHYS 401; pre- or corequisite, PHYS 321.

ASTR 505. Physics of Interstellar Gas. 3 Credits.
Surveys the physical processes governing the interstellar medium (ISM), which takes up the “refuse” of old stars while providing fuel for young stars forming. Covers the processes regulating the galactic gas budget and the corresponding observational diagnostics. Topics: radiative transfer, line formation mechanisms, continuum radiation, gas dynamics, star formation.
Requisites: Prerequisites, ASTR 301, MATH 383, and PHYS 331.

ASTR 519. Observational Astronomy. 4 Credits. A course designed to familiarize the student with observational techniques in optical and radio astronomy, including application of photography, spectroscopy, photometry, and radio methods. Three lecture and three laboratory hours a week.
Requisites: Prerequisite, ASTR 102; pre- or corequisite, PHYS 331; permission of the instructor for students lacking the prerequisite.

SERVICE COURSES

The Department of Physics & Astronomy at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill has completed a multi-stage transformation of its introductory physics courses that has improved the ability of students to learn the material. Most students have responded favorably to the new courses, stating that their content is more interesting and relevant and that they generally like the new format.
In a process that began in 2004, the department created four new courses based on effective, research-validated methods that present students with exciting and relevant physics topics tailored for their fields of study. The new courses were launched in the 2014-15 academic year. They now provide physics instruction to more than 1,600 students each year.

Students majoring in the physical and mathematical sciences (including physics, chemistry, mathematics, computer science, and environmental science) enroll in PHYS 118/119. Those courses include special relativity and quantum mechanics in addition to mechanics, electricity & magnetism and optics. Taken concurrently with intermediate and advanced calculus classes, PHYS 118/119 provides an introduction to modern physics as well as a rigorous foundation for further study of physics and related subjects.

Students majoring in the life sciences (including biology and the health sciences) enroll in PHYS 114/115. Those courses include topics from mechanics, electricity & magnetism, optics, and nuclear physics that are connected directly to biology and biomedicine. Some of these topics, such as diffusion and nonlinear stress and strain, are not typically taught in introductory physics courses but are important in the life sciences. Taken after completing one semester of calculus, PHYS 114/115 provides a sound introduction to the physical principles relevant to living things.

Both course sequences are taught in the “lecture/studio” mode that maximizes the benefits of active engagement in hands-on, minds-on learning in the context of courses with large enrollment. Each course is made up of “modules,” typically two per week. Each module begins with a pre-class assignment that involves reading from the textbook or viewing a video and then answering questions through an online portal. This prepares the students for a lecture in which they discuss with one another questions the instructor poses about the relevant physics concepts and use classroom response devices to answer. The lecture is followed by a two-hour studio session in which students work in small groups on experiments, guided tutorials, context-rich problems, and computer simulations. The module ends with a homework assignment (completed online) to reinforce the concepts and provide additional practice in problem-solving.

This mode of instruction, pioneered at Kansas State University and the Colorado School of Mines, makes extensive use of the findings of physics education research in the design of class activities to enhance students’ learning. The effectiveness of the lecture/studio mode, as implemented at UNC, has been quantified in a recent Master’s thesis by David Guynn. That thesis presented a detailed analysis that demonstrated statistically significant gains in learning by students receiving instruction in the lecture/studio mode compared to those who received traditional instruction.

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