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Lectures & Recitations

Take the course at your own pace. A "week" below can be spread out to a longer period, e.g., 10 days or two weeks, to fit your schedule. We recommend you follow the chronology of how we actually taught this class: with alternating lectures and recitations.

Content Organized by Week

The teaching style for this course is rather unique. We believe learning is best done by engaging with the material at multiple levels – from abstract math to practical demonstrations. With this in mind, the class is organized into "lectures": where we introduce broad concepts, developed using basic examples and lots of in-class demonstrations to show you the physics live-in-action. The other aspect of our teaching is "recitations", holistically intertwined with the lectures, where we explore ideas in further depth, look at various examples and subtleties, and talk about interesting applications along the way.

The course is ideally covered over a span of 10 weeks, with two lectures and two recitations each week. The first lecture each week makes heavy use of demonstrations to introduce and illustrate topics of instruction. The second lecture is more analytic, deriving and exploring the basic results in detail. The recitations provide further analysis, sometimes with additional demonstrations, as well as provide a forum for our students to clear up points of confusion.

Full Collection of Lectures and Recitations

Lectures & Recitations Playlist

Lectures Recitations
Lecture 1: Simple Harmonic Motion Recitation 1: Why Vibrations and Waves Matter
Lecture 2: The Pendulum and the LC Circuit
Recitation 2: Simple Harmonic Motion in Action
Lecture 3: Damped and Driven Harmonic Oscillator Recitation 3: Damped Harmonic Motion - I
Lecture 4: Three Cases of Damped Motion
Recitation 4: Damped Harmonic Motion - II
Lecture 5: Steady State Motion of a Forced Damped Harmonic Oscillator Recitation 5: Forced Harmonic Motion
Lecture 6: Energy and Power Dissipation; Coupled Oscillators Recitation 6: Forced Harmonic Motion in Action
Lecture 7: Solving the Coupled Oscillator Equation
Recitation 7: Coupled Oscillators
Lecture 8: Forced Coupled Oscillation; Traveling Waves Recitation 8: Coupled Oscillations in Action
Lecture 9: "The" Wave Equation and a Vibrating String Recitation 9: The Phenomenon of Wave Propagation
Lecture 10: Where Things Begin and End Boundary Conditions and Discontinuities Recitation 10: Continuum Normal Modes and Standing Waves
Lecture 11: Standing Waves Recitation 11: Fourier Analysis in Action
Lecture 12: Fourier Analysis and then More Dimensions Recitation 12: Standing Waves and Boundary Conditions in Two Dimensions
Lecture 13: Standing Waves Demonstrated and Analysis of the Circular Drumhead Recitation 13: Interference and Sound Channels
Lecture 14: Interference of Waves and Electromagnetic Waves Recitation 14: Interference in Action
Lecture 15: Polarization; Huygen’s Principle; Diffraction Recitation 15: Polarization
Lecture 16: Double Slits and Circular Apertures Recitation 16: Introduction to Dispersion of Waves
Lecture 17: Fresnel Diffraction, then on to Dispersion Recitation 17: Thanksgiving: A Glimpse into the Heart of Physics
Lecture 18: Dispersion Demonstrated Recitation 18: Final Review
Lecture 19: The Bandwidth Theorem