PHY 2025 Sample Syllabus

Sample Syllabus

Brevard Community College
PHY 2025 – Introduction to Principles of Physics


INSTRUCTOR: William Koch


PHONE: (913) 469-8500 Ext. 3725


I teach full-time at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kansas, so I don’t have an office at Brevard Community College.  My on-campus office hours at JCCC, in case you want to call, are

T 8am – 9am, 12pm – 1pm (central time)
R 8am – 9am, 11am – 1pm (central time)

EMAIL:  All email should be sent through the Angel system.

  • I insist on using Angel email for security reasons.  If Angel is down, and it is urgent, you can email me at  Make sure to send it from your JCCC student email account (not from Yahoo!, Gmail, etc).  Please make sure your subject line contains information about your email (not simply replying to an old irrelevant message).
  • Discussion boards are set up in Angel for students to post general questions and possible errors.  Please make use of those boards so that others might benefit from any ensuing discussion.  Questions of a personal nature, such as a student’s grades, should be sent by email for privacy.

COURSE TITLE: Introduction to Principles of Physics



Please be advised that this course is not a lab class.  Be sure you don’t require a class with lab.


This course is an introduction to concepts of physics and problem solving. Physics students who have taken no high school physics, did not do well in that topic, or completed a course long time ago should find this course helpful. This course is a prerequisite for College Physics and General Physics. The course will provide you with a review of the required math skills, graphing techniques and problem solving methods.

  • This is NOT a self-paced course and some materials will be due or made available at the appropriate time in order to keep the class in sync.  This course is delivered entirely online.
  • There are no on-campus meetings required.

PREREQUISITE(S): College Algebra ( MAC 1102 ) or Pre-Calculus ( MAC 1142 ), Basic knowledge of computers and the Internet, email, etc.

REQUIRED TEXTBOOKS: Conceptual Physics 11th Edition by Paul G. Hewitt (ISBN-13: 978-0-321-56809, ISBN-10: 0-321-56809-5)


  • Access to computer with Internet service (broadband is desirable, but not necessary)
  • scientific calculator (you do NOT need a graphing calculator) or a scientific-calculator app on a smart phone

Web Browsers:

  • Windows users should use either Firefox or Internet Explorer 7 (Firefox is HIGHLY recommended).
  • Mac users should use Firefox.
  • Do not try to use browsers other than these (e.g. Safari or Chrome).

Warning: Angel may appear to work okay with other browsers, but serious issues may arise during critical times (like during an exam)!  I grade what I get, so make sure you are using the recommended browser.


While online classes offer flexibility in when and where one completes course material, the fact is that they require more time than an on-campus class.  It is a myth that online course are easier and require less time.  Expect to spend as much time doing work for this class each week as you would driving to and from class sitting in class and doing homework in an on-campus class each week.

Students need to be:

  • self-motivated so that assignments are submitted on time.
  • self-sufficient and be able to explore, read and follow written instructions
  • organized so that  due dates aren’t missed and adequate time is spent on assignments.


Assignments and Assessments

Assignments and assessments consist of:

  • chapter homework at the end of each chapter, submitted through Angel
  • additional unit assignments, where applicable
  • homework discussion board postings
  • three unit exams
  • final exam (proctored) over the last unit

Before any assignments become available to you for submission, you must agree to the Terms of the Course.  You will find this on the lessons page.  After you submit that, you will find icons for the assignment folders.


Grade Distribution:

Homework Discussion Board Postings 10%
Homework 25%
Three Exams 45%
Final Exam (proctored) 20%

Grading Scale:

90 – 100% A
80 – 89% B
70 – 79% C
55 – 69% D
Below 55% F

Important Dates deadlines for withdrawl, registration, fee-payment, audit, etc.


Technical Issues and Support

It is up to the student to attempt assignments well before the due dates in case technical problems need to be solved.

  • No late assignments will be accepted due to individual technical problems or browser issues.
  • If there is a lengthy general outage due dates may be extended.
  • Technical support information can obtained by emailing technical support at
  • The Angel Student Handout can be found here.
  • Student tutorials, with video, can be found here.

BCC Attendance Policy

You must maintain acceptable attendance in your online course. Just logging into your online course does not constitute attendance. You must complete a required activity. Failing to complete two-consecutive weeks of required work in your course will result in your instructor reporting you as Stopped Attending and the college will withdraw you for nonattendance (W7) from the course. You will not be reinstated.  If for any reason you believe you will miss any assignment in your course, you must obtain prior approval from your instructor. Do not assume that you can ask for forgiveness or an extension after the fact. Documentation may be required by your instructor.

3-Day Initial Attendance Policy

You must complete one or more required Initial Attendance activities within your online course within the first 3 days of the semester.  The 3-day attendance assignment is found in Angel in the Lessons tab.  Failure to complete the required 3-Day Initial Attendance Activity by the third day of the semester will result in your instructor reporting you as Never Attending and the college will withdraw you from the course. You will not be reinstated.

Chapter Homework Questions

There are assigned homework questions at the end of each chapter.  Once you figure out what the answers are, you are to submit them in electronic quiz-style format through Angel.

  • Students can work as far in advance in the homework as they wish, though it will likely be more effective to stay somewhat in sync with the exams.  I do not accept emailed answers.
  • Students may collaborate as much as they like on the homework.
  • Angel will not reveal correct answers, so students need to work together to figure out the answers they missed.
  • No late homework will be accepted.

Further details about homework are found in the first homework-set folder in Angel.

Homework Discussion Board Participation

Homework discussion boards are set up in the homework folders.

  • Each student is required to ask a semester-total of 2 questions on any of the provided homework boards.
  • Students may also earn full credit by correctly answering another student’s question.
  • Students will receive credit for at most 1 posts on any single discussion board, though more posts may be made.

Further details about these postings are found on the discussion boards

Instructor Participation

I will try to answer posts regarding problems with Angel or understanding procedures or assignments as soon as possible.  I usually check everyday, even on the weekends, but I cannot guarantee weekend or holiday responses to come as quickly.  I tend to wait a bit on homework questions to see if another student might respond first.  Explaining and giving hints requires processing one’s own knowledge of the subject, helping with understanding and retention.  Students helping other students is usually a win-win situation.

Exams and Final

There are three “regular” semester exams.  Check the Calendar tab to see when exams become available and when they are due.  They are generally available for 3 – 4 days.  Each exam:

  • are multiple-choice
  • consists of both problems and conceptual questions
  • will require a calculator
  • needs to be completed in 2-hours
  • is “open-book” and open-notes
  • is in the relevant folder in the Lessons tab

Each student must do the exam individually.  Working together will be considered cheating (It is very obvious when this occurs).  Times and IP addresses (unique to each computer) is at the instructor’s fingertips.  Posting or answering questions on discussion boards before the time has expired to take the make-up exam will also be considered cheating.

Makeup Exams

Each student may take one and only one make-up exam for any reason (e.g. personal crises, computer crash, forgot about it, grandma died again, I didn’t want to take it, my computer crashed during the test, I did lousy the first try, etc).  Watch for the make-up exam dates on the schedule.

  • Since the student will have had more time to prepare before the exam, he/she will only have 80 minutes to complete it.
  • The make-up exams are available for a limited time (3 – 4 days).
  • There is no make-up exam for the Final.
  • The maximum score between the “regular exam” and the make-up will be recorded.
  • Further missed exams will result in a zero.

Proctored Final Exam

The Final Exam serves as your proctored exam.

The Final Exam will be cover only the chapters in the Homework and Exam Set Four folder.  As with all other exams, the Final is open-book and open notes.  You may bring in books, written or printed notes, but you will not be able to bring in flash drives or access any other web sites while taking the exam.

Cheating or Plagiarism

No student shall engage in behavior that, in the judgment of the instructor of the class, may be construed as cheating. This may include, but is not limited to, plagiarism or other forms of academic dishonesty such as the acquisition, without permission, of tests or other academic materials and/or distribution of these materials. This includes students who aid and abet, as well as those who attempt such behavior.

(Additional examples of cheating include unauthorized sharing of answers during an exam (including an online exam), use of unauthorized notes or study materials during an exam, altering an exam and resubmitting it for re-grading, having another student take an exam for you or submit assignments in your name, participating in unauthorized collaboration on coursework to be graded, providing false data for a research paper, using electronic equipment to transmit information to a third party to seek answers, or creating/citing false or fictitious references for a term paper. Submitting the same paper for multiple classes may also be considered cheating if not authorized by the instructors involved. Examples of plagiarism include any attempt to take credit for work that is not your own, such as using direct quotes from an author without using quotation marks or indentation in the paper, paraphrasing work that is not your own without giving credit to the original source of the idea, or failing to properly cite all sources in the body of your work.) This includes use of complete or partial papers from Internet paper mills.

Student Privacy

Student Privacy Rights under the Family Educational Rights & Privacy Act, every student attending a post-secondary institution has a right to privacy. This act prohibits the release of information concerning a student’s grade, progress, etc., to anyone other than that student. Thus, grades are not posted on walls, discussed over the phone or sent via email A student can however, discuss his/her grade in private with the instructor on a face-to-face basis.

In support of FERPA requirements, all email class correspondence will be done via Angel.


If you are a student with a disability, and if you will be requesting accommodations, it is your responsibility to contact the Office for Students with Disabilities.  Their phone number 321-433-5598.  Nancy Malta’s email address is  Their we site is here. They will recommend any appropriate accommodations to your instructor and his/ her Academic Director.  The instructor and Academic Director will identify for you which accommodations will be arranged.

You need to contact me via the Angel email system if you need any special arrangements such as extra time on exams.

What Students Can Expect from the Instructor

It is reasonable that students can expect:

  • to be assessed fairly and consistently with the Syllabus
  • to be treated with kindness and respect
  • to have access to your instructor (email, discussion boards, phone, meeting) with reasonably-prompt responses
  • to have well-prepared and logically organized online material
  • to have assignments graded and returned in a timely manner


To introduce the student to selected topics in physics which includes math review, optics, basic DC circuit, vector, motion, force, Newton’s laws of motion, work, energy, etc. To introduce the application of mathematics to physical systems. To familiarize the student with the systems of measurement used by scientists and engineers.


Topics include:

  1. About Science
  2. Newton’s First Law of Motion: Inertia
  3. Linear Motion
  4. Newton’s Second Law of Motion: Force and Acceleration
  5. Newton’s Third Law of Motion: Action and Reaction
  6. Momentum
  7. Energy
  8. Rotational Motion
  9. Gravity
  10. Projectile and Satellite Motion
  11. Vibrations and Waves
  12. Electrostatics
  13.  Electric Current
  14. Magnetism
  15. Properties of Light
  16. Color
  17. Special Theory of Relativity