2 ways to find the spring constant

November 7, 2019 Leave a comment

I made this for you.

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More Uncertainty

October 29, 2019 Leave a comment

Here is an updated video on uncertainty.  I included the answer to the quiz.

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Uncertainty stuff

October 24, 2019 Leave a comment


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Projectile Motion

October 21, 2019 Leave a comment

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Friction Data

September 20, 2019 Leave a comment

Since there were some students that weren’t able to collect data on the coefficient of friction, I decided to do it for you.  Here you go.

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Lab Report Guidelines

September 5, 2019 Leave a comment

The first formal lab report is due at the end of the midterm exam.  I’m flexible on the actual format of the report, but I find that students like more guidance.  In general, you want to present your physics model along with the data and analysis that supports it.  Here are some sections that you could include.


  • This should be a one or two paragraph section.
  • What is the main physics model that you are investigating (building)?
  • It’s ok to describe the outcome.  Don’t worry about spoilers.  Just give a very brief overview of the whole report.

Data and Methods

  • Write this as though you were giving details to another student in your lab such that they could reproduce your data.
  • You don’t need to include “gather materials section”.  You don’t need to describe any equipment unless it is very different from other students in your lab.
  • If your setup is important, you might want to draw a picture.  Don’t steal pictures from the internet.  That’s bad.
  • For the data, you don’t have to show ALL your raw data – but you can if you think it’s important.
  • You are probably going to want a graph.
  • Don’t forget the units.

Model and Analysis

  • Here is where you analyze the data and build a model.
  • Maybe you already know what the model should be—that’s fine, you still should justify it with data.
  • Show your calculations with enough detail that another student in lab could follow them.


  • Discuss your overall results.
  • Do not say “I learn a lot”.
  • Do not use the phrase “human error”.
  • You should discuss the uncertainty in your data.
  • Use your model in some other calculation.  See the questions at the end of the lab page.

Other notes and reminders

  • If you copy or modify someone else’s lab report, that is cheating.  You will get a zero and an academic integrity report.  Don’t cheat.
  • Oh, but you worked with another student—that’s fine.  You might have the same data, but not the same words.  Trust me, it’s obvious when you cheat.  Don’t cheat.
  • Do not turn in hand written lab reports.  You can hand write the equations—that’s fine.
  • Feel free to staple a graph in there.
  • Don’t use stuff from online.
  • Don’t make it long just because you think that’s better.
  • Here is a sample lab report. https://plab193.wordpress.com/2018/01/31/lab-report-constant-velocity/
  • There are no late labs.  If you don’t turn it in on time, it counts as a zero. You can turn it in early though.
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Practice with graphs

September 5, 2019 Leave a comment

Here is an example of plotting mass vs. volume to find the density.

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