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Unit information: Practical Physics 201 in 2021/22

Unit name Practical Physics 201
Unit code PHYS29010
Credit points 10
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Lindsay
Open unit status Not open

PHYS10006, PHYS10005, PHYS10004, PHYS10007 or equivalent.



School/department School of Physics
Faculty Faculty of Science


Physics is a discipline which has observation and experimental validation at its heart. This unit is laboratory work, and continues the development of key experimental skills, the use of various standard pieces of apparatus and analysis of data. The experiments allow for student input into design and measurement. Transferable skills are included by having formal write-up of experiments, an assessment viva for each experiment, and a group activity.


To enable further familiarity with the techniques of experimental physics including experimental design, use of appropriate apparatus, collection and analysis of data. To give experience of report writing.

To receive credit for this unit, students must make a reasonable attempt at every aspect of the teaching and assessment, including any post-laboratory work, practical experiments, formal reports and workshop activities. Failure to do so may result in credit being withheld, even if the overall mark is above the pass mark for the unit.

Supplementary or resit assessment of this unit is only possible through engagement in the following academic year.

Intended learning outcomes

Students should be able to:

  • Be able to use apparatus appropriately in order to allow meaningful results to be obtained.
  • Understand some of the principles underlying the design of experiments.
  • Understand the significance of a laboratory notebook, and the measurement and interpretation of data.
  • Maintain a useful laboratory notebook.
  • Be able to present the results of an experiment in a manner appropriate to a professional scientist.
  • Work within a group to produce a scientific presentation, poster, or other group activity that may be based on one of the laboratory experiments.
  • Work within a group to produce a scientific presentation, poster, or other group activity that may be based on one of the laboratory experiments.

Teaching details

The unit will be taught through:

  • Supervised laboratory sessions; students who either begin or continue their studies in an online mode should note that it is likely they may be required to complete practical work or alternative activities in person, in order to meet the intended learning outcomes for the unit, prepare them for subsequent units or to satisfy any accreditation requirements
  • Asynchronous online materials
  • Independent practical activities

Assessment Details

Summative assessment is provided through:

  • Laboratory notebooks and interview (60%)
  • Formal Report (30%)
  • Presentation, poster, or group activity (10%) including peer assessment


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. PHYS29010).