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Dr. Richard A. Lindgren, Research Professor of Physics
Department of Physics, University of Virginia
Professor Lindgren is very experienced in teaching online courses and
has taught over a thousand students the past 10 years.
Instructor Vita Short Form, click here
E-mail: ral5q@virginia.edu

The Physics Department at the University of Virginia is offering an online course in Light and Optics with home labs for teachers. The course will be taken entirely from home using the web with home labs based on a kit. This is a graduate credit online physics course for teachers which can be used for re-certification and endorsement credit.

This course is organized around COLLAB, the UVa version of Sakai, which is a learning management system used by over 350 educational organizations. You will obtain access to the complete organization of this course on COLLABafter you are registered for the course. COLLAB access is password protected. All the Lab asignments and power point slides are accessed through COLLAB. After you have activated your email address, you must obtain your username and password to use features of COLLAB at UVa. Click on the button called Log-in-Instructions to learn how to log onto COLLAB. Your UVa email address must be activated before you an log onto COLLAB. We will use COLLAB as the central point for all information after you have registered. When you access COLLAB, click on the Discussion Board and post a comment to let me know you made it.


Lab Assignments will be downloaded from COLLAB and submitted on COLLAB as a word document. You will first download the Lab write up from COLLAB, read your document, and study the information. You will also read the sections in the textbook shown on the syllabus. Do not start the experiment until you have read the entire assignment.

As you do the experiment, you will type your answers to the questions in your word document and save it on your computer. After you have completed the experiment, and you are satisfied with your answers, you will cut and paste them into the Lab Word document on the computer and upload into COLLAB. Sometimes you will be asked to make a graph or sketch your observations and results. You will have to learn how to scan your graphs and sketches at school or at home with a scanner and save them as a pdf file or jpeg file and include them in your word document and resubmit the report on COLLAB. Sometime you will be asked to use a digital camera to take photos of your experimental setup, graphs, and sketches and save them in your computer as an image file and include them in your word document. I consider learning these procedures as part of the Lab course and you will be graded accordingly.

Lab Reports   90%
Final             10%

You must activate your UVa email since all correspondence will be through your UVa email address. Click on the button on the left called Log-in-Instructions to learn how to activate your UVa email address. You can not take the course without activating your UVa email address.

Recommended Textbooks

1) Giancoli, Physics: Principles with Applications, 6/E ISBN 0130606200
Light and Optics Chapters 24, 25, and 26, A good algebra based textbook. The reading assignments are based on this textbook.

2) Giancoli, Physics for Scientist & Engineers Vol. 2 Chapters 21-35, 4/E ISBN-10: 0131992260, ISBN-13: 9780131992269
Light and Optics Chapters 32, 33, 34, and 35. A good calculus based solid textbook. Either of these two textbooks can be used

3) Nahum Kipnis, Rediscovering Optics, Bena Press, 1993, ISBN 0-9636784-0-X.
This softcover book is a good supplement to either of the above two textbooks. It has a socratic pedagogical approach and historical viewpoint - lots of antique-looking figures and photos.

IMPORTANT The Kits are mailed to you by Federal Express at our expense. You must email me your exact street address and phone number. We can not send a kit by UPS or Federal Express to a post office address. When the class ends and if you are employed as a teacher, you may keep the kit, otherwise you send it back to us at your expense.