The AP Physics B (S307) course provides a systematic introduction to the main principles of physics and emphasizes the development of conceptual understanding and problem-solving ability using algebra and trigonometry, but rarely calculus. In most colleges, this is a one-year terminal course and is not the usual preparation for more advanced physics and engineering courses. However, the B course provides a foundation in physics for students in the life sciences, pre-medicine, and some applied sciences, as well as other fields not directly related to science.


Topics Covered

The Physics B course includes topics in both classical and modern physics. A knowledge of algebra and basic trigonometry is required for the course; the basic ideas of calculus may be introduced in the theoretical development of some physical concepts, such as acceleration and work. Understanding of the basic principles involved and the ability to apply these principles in the solution of problems should be the major goals of the course.
The course seeks to be representative of topics covered in similar college courses, as determined by periodic surveys. Accordingly, goals have been set for percentage coverage of five general areas. See the topic outline for each area:
bullet
bullet

Newtonian Mechanics (35%)
bullet
bullet

Fluid Mechanics and Thermal Physics (15%)
bullet
bullet

Electricity and Magnetism (25%)
bullet
bullet

Waves and Optics (15%)
bullet
bullet

Atomic and Nuclear Physics (10%)

Students who enroll in this course must be motivated, capable of advanced problem solving, and willing to do work outside the classroom (homework!) and over intersessions (if the required work in not completed). The work load will be heavy and students will be expected to maintain high productivity. Students must have demonstrated ability in previous mathematics and science courses. Students must be recommended by their present mathematics or science teacher. This course is not just for high achievers or students with natural ability; hard-working students with an interest in physics should find success in this course.


The material presented for instruction in this course is also derived from other high school and college texts. Texts include:
bullet
bullet

Physics for Scientists and Engineers (Serway)
bullet
bullet

College Physics (Sears, Zemansky, and Young)
bullet
bullet

College Physics (Stanley)
bullet
bullet

Fundamentals of Physics (Halliday, Resnick, and Walker)
bullet
bullet

Physics (Halliday, Resnick, and Krane)
bullet
bullet

Physics (Hecht)
bullet
bullet

Physics (Wolfson and Pasachoff)
bullet
bullet

Conceptual Physics (Hewitt)
bullet
bullet

College Physics (Davis)
bullet
bullet

Contemporary College Physics (Jones and Childers)
bullet
bullet

University Physics (Young and Freedman)
bullet
bullet

Physics (Cutnell and Johnson)
bullet
bullet

Physics: A Contemporary Perspective (Knight)
bullet
bullet

Physics (Serway and Faughn)
bullet
bullet

How Things Work (Bloomfield)