Goshen College > Physics

Physics 303
Classical fields / Electrodynamics

Syllabus, Spring 2012

We meet at noon, MWF in SC 203.

On the web

You can find the syllabus and other materials related to this course on the web at:  
goshen.edu/fields , or
goshen.edu/physix/303 .

Grades will be available on moodle.goshen.edu.

I use your "goshen.edu" e-mail address for class communications. Some of you may use other e-mail services. If you do use some other service, make sure your goshen.edu e-mail account is set up to forward e-mail to the account you read most often. (Zimbra: Preferences > Mail)


Paul Meyer Reimer

Sci 011   ·   x7318   ·   gvoice: 312-3395   ·   e-mail: paulmr@goshen.edu


The classical theory of electric and magnetic fields is developed using vector calculus. Topics include dielectric and magnetic materials, Maxwell's field equations, and electromagnetic waves. Prerequisites: Phys 203-204-General Physics I and II.

This is a 3 credit hour course. The College expectation is that you are spending 2-4 hours outside class for every hour in class.

Texts and Tools


GriffithsDavid J. Griffiths. Introduction to Electrodynamics (3rd edition).  Prentice Hall, 1999.

Mathematica: You'll need to use a computer algebra system like Maple or Mathematica to visualize and solve some homework problems and potentially exam questions. You don't have to buy one: GC has a site license for Mathematica which is available on GC lab computers.



homework 28%
problem writeups (2) 8%
2 exams 38%
final exam 23%
participation 3%

Total grade outcomes:

    A > 90%
    B 80-89%
    C 70-79%
    D 60-69%
    F < 60%

I may adjust this scheme down a bit (e.g. 89% might end up being good enough for an A), but I certainly won't adjust it up.


Working through the homework is perhaps more important for your learning than anything we do in class. Everyone will hand in their own write-up of each homework problem. But I encourage you to work through homework problems with others in the class.

Unless otherwise indicated, problems are from Griffiths' textbook.

Disability accommodations

Goshen College wants to help all students be as academically successful as possible. If you have a disability and require accommodations, please contact the instructor or Director of the Academic Resource and Writing Center, Lois Martin, early in the semester so that your learning needs may be appropriately met. In order to receive accommodations, documentation concerning your disability must be on file with the Academic Resource and Writing Center, GL113, x7576, lmartin@goshen.edu. All information will be held in the strictest confidence. The Academic Resource and Writing Center offers tutoring and writing assistance for all students. For further information please see www.goshen.edu/studentlife/arwc/.

Image credits

WileyMCB - Maya Lin's Storm King Wavefield.