Offered to students admitted to Year 1 in ALL
Major/Minor ALL
Course Type
Offer in 2018 - 2019 Y N
Course Code PHYS1055
Date2019/07/23 19:18
Enquiry for Course Details
PHYS1055 How things work (6 credits) Academic Year 2018
Offering Department Physics Quota ---
Course Co-ordinator Dr M K Yip, Physics < mankit@bohr.physics.hku.hk >
Teachers Involved (Dr M K Yip,Physics)
Course Objectives This course is designed for students in all disciplines and all years who are curious about science in daily life. The course covers the working principles and mechanisms of the things and phenomena around us. Logical thinking and appreciation of science are emphasized with mathematics kept at a minimum. Students are trained to develop scientific intuition and to understand that many "magical" things in everyday life can be predictable.
Course Contents & Topics Topics include: the science in the household and the science of driving, sports and amusement. Daily applications are explored with simple and lucid explanations. Developments in optical recording, medical imaging for diagnosis and the magnetic levitated trains in public transportation are introduced as examples of the modern technology. Contents of the course are constantly updated to reflect the advances in modern science and technology.
Course Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this course, students should be able to:

CLO 1 describe and discuss the physical principles that are behind the household appliances and the scientific issues in daily life
CLO 2 demonstrate their knowledge to related topics qualitatively
CLO 3 criticize and express views in logical and effective ways
CLO 4 recognize the significance of science and technology
Pre-requisites
(and Co-requisites and
Impermissible combinations)
NIL
Course to PLO Mapping
Offer in 2018 - 2019 Y        2nd sem    Examination May     
Offer in 2019 - 2020 Y
Course Grade A+ to F
Grade Descriptors
A Demonstrate thorough mastery at an advanced level of extensive knowledge and skills required for attaining all the course learning outcomes. Show strong analytical and critical abilities and logical thinking, with evidence of original thought, and ability to apply knowledge to a wide range of complex, familiar and unfamiliar situations. Apply highly effective organizational and presentational skills.
B Demonstrate substantial command of a broad range of knowledge and skills required for attaining at least most of the course learning outcomes. Show evidence of analytical and critical abilities and logical thinking, and ability to apply knowledge to familiar and some unfamiliar situations. Apply effective organizational and presentational skills.
C Demonstrate general but incomplete command of knowledge and skills required for attaining most of the course learning outcomes. Show evidence of some analytical and critical abilities and logical thinking, and ability to apply knowledge to most familiar situations. Apply moderately effective organizational and presentational skills.
D Demonstrate partial but limited command of knowledge and skills required for attaining some of the course learning outcomes. Show evidence of some coherent and logical thinking, but with limited analytical and critical abilities. Show limited ability to apply knowledge to solve problems. Apply limited or barely effective organizational and presentational skills.
Fail Demonstrate little or no evidence of command of knowledge and skills required for attaining the course learning outcomes. Lack of analytical and critical abilities, logical and coherent thinking. Show very little or no ability to apply knowledge to solve problems. Organization and presentational skills are minimally effective or ineffective.
Course Type Lecture-based course
Course Teaching
& Learning Activities
Activities Details No. of Hours
Lectures 36
Tutorials 12
Reading / Self study 80
Assessment Methods
and Weighting
Methods Details Weighting in final
course grade (%)
Assessment Methods
to CLO Mapping
Assignments 25 CLO 1,2,3,4
Examination 2-hour written exam 50 CLO 1,2,3,4
Presentation 25 CLO 1,2,3,4
Required/recommended reading
and online materials
Lecture notes provided by Course Coordinator
L. A. Bloomfield: How Things Work: The Physics of Everyday Life (John Wiley & Sons, Inc, 2008, 3rd edition)
Course Website http://www.physics.hku.hk/~phys1055/
Additional Course Information NIL
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