## For Engineers

Chapter 3: The Frosh Canon,

or "So What Courses Are You Taking?"

3.3: Physics Options for Engineers

by USG Academics Committee, last updated 07/31/2016 by Arlene Gamio Cuervoby USG Academics Committee, last updated 07/31/2016 by Arlene Gamio Cuervo

You need a full year of physics, covering the topics of mechanics, oscillations and waves, thermodynamics, electricity, magnetism, optics, and some modern physics (quantum mechanics). Either the 103/104 track or the 105/106 track are acceptable. Switching between the two tracks is acceptable in the first few weeks of 103/104, as the courses share labs and lectures. Additionally, if you are more confident in one area than the other, you may take the combinations 105/104 or 103/106. Physics courses at Princeton are very time consuming, sporting one three-hour lab, one lecture, three precepts, a problem set and a quiz every week.

This course covers "basic concepts of classical mechanics from Newton's laws, energy conservation and angular momentum to gravity, fluids, oscillations and thermodynamics are treated at an introductory level." Some preparation in physics and calculus is desirable, though calculus may be taken concurrently. This course is famously insufferable.

This course is a continuation of 103, covering "electromagnetism from electrostatics, DC and AC circuits to optics, and topics of modern physics... at an introductory level." Again, some preparation in physics and calculus (especially multivariate) is desirable, though calculus may be taken concurrently.

This course "parallels 103 at a level that assumes a good preparation in physics and calculus. The material is treated in more depth and with more mathematical sophistication than in 103." Take this course if you love physics, or alternatively if you are a masochist. If you are interested in taking 105 you will enroll in a 103H section - after the first few weeks, the course will reorganize. The course site says that taking the course concurrently with MAT 104 is acceptable, but this is a pretty bad idea. The material covered is the same as 103 plus thermodynamics, special relativity, and a sprinkle of misery.

This course "parallels 104 at a more sophisticated level, emphasizing the unification of electric and magnetic forces and electromagnetic radiation." It’s the stereotypical Purcell-Electromagnetism course for physics majors at Princeton. To enter this course, students should have done well in 103 or 105 and should be comfortable with multivariate calculus.

**PHY 103 – General Physics I**

This course covers "basic concepts of classical mechanics from Newton's laws, energy conservation and angular momentum to gravity, fluids, oscillations and thermodynamics are treated at an introductory level." Some preparation in physics and calculus is desirable, though calculus may be taken concurrently. This course is famously insufferable.

**PHY 104 – General Physics II**

This course is a continuation of 103, covering "electromagnetism from electrostatics, DC and AC circuits to optics, and topics of modern physics... at an introductory level." Again, some preparation in physics and calculus (especially multivariate) is desirable, though calculus may be taken concurrently.

**PHY 105 (PHY 103H) – Advanced Physics (Mechanics)**

This course "parallels 103 at a level that assumes a good preparation in physics and calculus. The material is treated in more depth and with more mathematical sophistication than in 103." Take this course if you love physics, or alternatively if you are a masochist. If you are interested in taking 105 you will enroll in a 103H section - after the first few weeks, the course will reorganize. The course site says that taking the course concurrently with MAT 104 is acceptable, but this is a pretty bad idea. The material covered is the same as 103 plus thermodynamics, special relativity, and a sprinkle of misery.

**PHY 106 – Advanced Physics (Electromagnetism)**

This course "parallels 104 at a more sophisticated level, emphasizing the unification of electric and magnetic forces and electromagnetic radiation." It’s the stereotypical Purcell-Electromagnetism course for physics majors at Princeton. To enter this course, students should have done well in 103 or 105 and should be comfortable with multivariate calculus.