From Galileo to Cosmic Rays: A New Look at Physics

From Galileo to Cosmic Rays: A New Look at Physics

From Galileo to Cosmic Rays: A New Look at Physics

From Galileo to Cosmic Rays: A New Look at Physics

Excerpt

Since the adoption of the new undergraduate curriculum at the University of Chicago four years ago, it has become increasingly evident, as the annual revision of its four introductory general courses has been undertaken, that in addition to comprehensive syllabi an entirely new type of book is needed at least in certain fields of work.

In the physical sciences, an examination on the content of the Introductory General Course is required of all students. The majority of the students have no background in this field and little or no previous training in any of its departments. Nearly all of them are majoring in other fields. This is due to the fact that students entering the University with good preparation in mathematics, physics, or chemistry, or in any two of these subjects, are advised to read for their physical science examinations, or to review and prepare for them in some manner that requires less time than a full year's attendance in this course. Furthermore, a few of the best students in other fields find it possible to do creditable work and save much time by intensive individual study, guided by conferences with their instructors and advisers, and supplemented by attendance only for certain periods of the course.

THERE are many excellent textbooks on physics. The present syllabus is replete with references to the two texts provided for our students in their rental sets. Abundant testimony from students of all types, however, has taught us that selected paragraphs, no matter how clear in their context in a well-organized body of material, become obscure to one who has almost . . .

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