Offered By

UNSW Sydney (The University of New South Wales)

About this Course

7,951

Most of the phenomena in the world around you are, at the fundamental level, based on physics, and much of physics is based on mechanics. Mechanics begins by quantifying motion, and then explaining it in terms of forces, energy and momentum. This allows us to analyse the operation of many familiar phenomena around us, but also the mechanics of planets, stars and galaxies.
This on-demand course is recommended for senior high school and beginning university students and anyone with a curiosity about basic physics. (The survey tells us that it's often used by science teachers, too.)
The course uses rich multimedia tutorials to present the material: film clips of key experiments, animations and worked example problems, all with a friendly narrator. You'll do a range of interesting practice problems, and in an optional component, you will use your ingenuity to complete at-home experiments using simple, everyday materials.
You will need some high-school mathematics: arithmetic, a little algebra, quadratic equations, and the sine, cosine and tangent functions from trigonometry. The course does not use calculus. However, we do provide a study aid introducing the calculus that would accompany this course if it were taught in a university.
By studying mechanics in this course, you will understand with greater depth many of the wonders around you in everyday life, in technology and in the universe at large. Meanwhile, we think you'll have some fun, too.

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.

Suggested: 1-4 hours/week...

Subtitles: English

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.

Suggested: 1-4 hours/week...

Subtitles: English

Week

1This introductory section covers some basic tools you will need to solve some of the physics problems we will encounter later....

5 videos (Total 23 min), 2 readings, 6 quizzes

Lesson 1.1: Introduction and Context3m

Lesson 1.2: Units and Significant Figures7m

Lesson 1.3: Vectors and Scalars4m

Lesson 1.4: Estimating5m

Course structure and grading3m

Week 1 Study Aids10m

Start of course survey32m

Introduction and Context8m

Units and Significant Figures (Important skills in this course!)14m

Vectors and Scalars16m

Estimating10m

Week 1 Test22m

Week

2Here we introduce kinematics, in which we describe and quantify movement of objects through space over time. Motion is so important to mechanics (and most of physics) that we'll spend a few weeks establishing the tools and techniques we'll need. We'll leave explaining motion to the later weeks, starting with Newton's laws in week 4. Here we study the simplest case: motion in a straight line....

4 videos (Total 24 min), 1 reading, 5 quizzes

Lesson 2.2: Acceleration7m

Lesson 2.3: Relating Velocity, Acceleration and Displacement2m

Lesson 2.4: Relative Motion5m

Week 2 Study Aids10m

Graphing Displacement and Velocity4m

Acceleration14m

Relating Velocity, Acceleration and Displacement4m

Relative Motion4m

Week 2 Test12m

Week

3Here we look at kinematics in two-dimensions – specifically, projectiles and objects in circular motion....

4 videos (Total 25 min), 1 reading, 6 quizzes

Lesson 3.2: Combining Vertical and Horizontal Motion3m

Lesson 3.3: Trajectories and Range7m

Lesson 3.4: Uniform Circular Motion6m

Week 3 Study Aids10m

Projectiles, Falling Vertically Under Gravity14m

Combining Vertical and Horizontal Motion14m

Trajectories and Range6m

Uniform Circular Motion4m

Week 3 Test18m

Week

4After describing and quantifying motion (weeks 2 and 3), we now start explaining it with Newton's three laws of motion. Knowledge of Newton's laws and the ability to apply them to various situations will allow us to explain much of the motion we observe in the world around us. They are also very important for analysing things (like bridges) that don't move much (a subject called Statics that's important in some Engineering programs). Because Newton's laws are so important, week 4 has five lessons, as well as slightly longer quizzes than the previous chapters. ...

7 videos (Total 35 min), 1 reading, 6 quizzes

Lesson 4.2: Inertial and Non-inertial Frames6m

Lesson 4.3: Newton's Third Law2m

Lesson 4.4: Calculating Total Force8m

Lesson 4.5: Practice Problems7m

Historical Interlude3m

The Syllogism1m

Week 4 Study Aids10m

Newton's Laws of Motion12m

Inertial and Non-inertial Frames14m

Newton's Third Law12m

Calculating Total Force18m

Practice Problems6m

Week 4 Test26m

Week

5We return to the difference between weight and mass. We introduce Hooke's law for elastic deformations. We consider forces between objects in contact and (for convenience) resolve them into their normal and frictional components – and as usual give you some problems to solve....

4 videos (Total 23 min), 1 reading, 5 quizzes

Lesson 5.2: Springs and Hooke's Law3m

Lesson 5.3: Normal and Frictional Forces6m

Lesson 5.4: Friction Problems4m

Week 5 Study Aids10m

Weight versus Mass6m

Springs and Hooke's Law6m

Normal and Frictional Forces4m

Friction Problems4m

Week 5 Test26m

Week

6In week 6 we explore work and energy, then power – the rate of doing work. We'll use work and Newton's second law to derive the quantity called kinetic energy. Looking at where work comes from, we'll distinguish two sorts of force – conservative and non-conservative. That will allow us to introduce potential energy and mechanical energy. Power is the rate of doing work. We'll spend some time relating these quantities and their units to your everyday experience, relating Joules to kilowatt hours (the unit used by electricity companies) and kilowatts to horsepower and to human power....

5 videos (Total 31 min), 1 reading, 7 quizzes

Lesson 6.2: Work and Kinetic Energy6m

Lesson 6.3: Work and Potential Energy5m

Lesson 6.4: Energy Conservation5m

Lesson 6.5: Energy, Work and Power7m

Week 6 Study Aids10m

What is Work?24m

Work and Kinetic Energy6m

Work and Potential Energy10m

Energy Conservation4m

Energy, Work and Power20m

Week 6 Test24m

Week

7It’s time for some smashing fun! Once we've defined momentum we'll use momentum to analyse elastic and inelastic collisions. Stand by for hammers, skateboards, car crashes and a bed of nails…...

4 videos (Total 23 min), 1 reading, 5 quizzes

Lesson 7.2: Impulse and More About Collisions6m

Lesson 7.3: Centre of Mass, Elastic and Inelastic Collisions5m

Lesson 7.4: Problems Involving Collisions6m

Week 7 Study Aids10m

Momentum and Collisions8m

Impulse and More About Collisions4m

Centre of Mass, Elastic and Inelastic Collisions4m

Problems Involving Collisions6m

Week 7 Test18m

Week

8For as long as history – and probably much longer – people have stared at the planets and stars and wondered. Why do they shine? What keeps them moving? Why don't they fall down? So next is gravity – and how it runs the solar system, the galaxy and the universe. Escape speed, orbits, satellite manoeuvring, black holes: yes, all of the these. ...

5 videos (Total 41 min), 1 reading, 6 quizzes

Lesson 8.2: g Varies with Latitude and Altitude; Gravitational Potential Energy9m

Lesson 8.3: Orbits11m

Lesson 8.4: Gravity and Other Forces7m

Another Historical Interlude4m

Week 8 Study Aids10m

Gravity, Orbits, Planets, Stars...10m

g Varies with Latitude and Altitude; Gravitational Potential Energy10m

Orbits8m

Gravity and Other Forces8m

Week 8 Test20m

End of course survey14m

4.4

40 Reviewsstarted a new career after completing these courses

got a tangible career benefit from this course

By RV•Jul 21st 2016

Great course. Good explanations and examples. The quizes and tests are not very easy sometimes, but they do you let think again. Very enjoyable! Just the course I was looking for a long time!

By CS•Nov 28th 2016

Great course, great professor, great opportunity of learning! Don't miss your chance...

UNSW Sydney, based in Sydney Australia, was established in 1949 and is one of Australia’s leading research and teaching universities with more than 50,000 students from over 120 countries. UNSW Sydney aspires to provide students with an outstanding educational experience, which both reflects our strong traditions of excellence, innovation and social justice, and builds on our strengths in scientific, technological and professional disciplines....

When will I have access to the lectures and assignments?

Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

What will I get if I purchase the Certificate?

When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

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Is financial aid available?

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