Physical Science 107 / History 107
 Section 1, MWF 9:00 - 9:50 AM

Professor: Chris Taylor                                                                                           Office: 438 Sequoia Hall

Phone: 278-6480                                                                  Office Hours: MW 1:00 - 1:50; Th: 3:00 - 3:50
  E-mail: ctaylor (at)                                                                                            also by appointment 

Class announcements

January 27:
First Day of Class!
January 27: Please print out and read the syllabus!
February 4:
The list of topics for the first paper is available.  Paper 1 is due March 6.
February 21:
The first exam will be on Thursday, Feb. 27.  The review guide is available.
March 13: The answer key for exam 1 is available.
March 20: The list of topics for the second paper is available.  Paper 1 is due April 22.
April 4: The second exam will be on Thursday, April10.  The review guide is available.
May 1: The answer key for exam 2 is available.
May 5: The final exam is a take-home exam and will will be available on Thursday May 15.  The review guide for the final exam is available.
May 15: The final exam is available.  The exam is take-home, and your answers must be turned in handwritten in a bluebook no later than 2:45 PM on Thursday, May 22.


Material Covered:                                                                  Readings:

1) What is science?

2) Ancient Science                                                                 McClellan & Dorn, chapters 1, 2, 3
3) The Greeks and Astronomy                                                McClellan & Dorn, chapters 4, 5

4) The Scientific Revolution: Copernicus                                  McClellan & Dorn, chapter 11

5) The Scientific Revolution: Galileo                                        McClellan & Dorn, chapter 12

6) Newton                                                                             McClellan & Dorn, chapter 13; and Gleick,
                                                                                                  Issac Newton

7) The Rise of Classical Physics                                             McClellan & Dorn, chapter 15; and
                                                                                                   James; and Mahon.

8) Modern Physics: Quantum Mechanics
                                                                                               McClellan & Dorn, chapter 18

9) Big Science                                                                       McClellan & Dorn, chapter 19

10) Who Funds Science?                                                        McClellan & Dorn, chapter 20

Additional Course Information:

Course Goals:

  1. To better understand the physical laws that govern the universe.

  2. To appreciate the historical context in which Humanity learned about these laws.

  3. To understand the different ways science is done.

  4. To understand the historical evolution of how science is done.

  5. To be able to discuss the roles played by science and technology in modern society.

    Required Texts:

McClellan, James E & Dorn, Harold., Science and Technology in World History, 2nd edition

Gleick, James, Isaac Newton
James, F.A.J.L., Michael Faraday: A Very Short Introduction
Mahon, Basil, The Man Who Changed Everything: The Life of James Clerk Maxwell


 Your final course grades will be based upon 2 exams, 1 final exam, two papers and
attendance/class participation.

Exam 1
Exam 2
Class participation
Paper 1
Paper 2
Final Exam

Letter grades will be assigned as follows:

less than 55%

Contacting Me
The best way is by e-mail, since I don't check my voice mail very often.  Coming to office hours is also good, and any time my door is open, please come in.

Make up Exams:
I will announce exam dates at least 2 weeks in advance of the exam.  If you have a conflicting activity that cannot be rescheduled, you must see me at least 2 days before the exam. If you don't, there will be no opportunity to make it up. You must bring me documentation of your conflicting activity (i.e. if you have jury duty that day, show me the form they sent you.  If you have a brain transplant scheduled, bring me a note from the surgeon).

Cell phone:
Please turn your cell phone to vibrate before class starts.  Cell phones that ring in the middle of class are disrespectful to your fellow students, and to me.  If your cell phone goes off in class and it is a call you must take, please go into the hallway to answer it.

The faculty of the Department of Physics and Astronomy do not tolerate academic dishonesty.
Falsification of data, copying, unauthorized collaborations, plagiarism,
alteration of graded materials
or other actions (as described in, but not necessarily
limited to the CSUS Policy Manual) will be
promptly reported to the Office of Student
Affairs. The offending student will be penalized on the
assignment in question. 
Serious infractions will result in course failure and a recommendation for

Students with disabilities:
Please see me before the end of the first week of class.

Chris Taylor :  ctaylor (at)