PHYS 234

PHYS 234 (Quantum Physics 1) Course Review

Velocity got a 3D printer. This is like a dream come true. I’ve always wanted to play with one and I have so much things on my mind to make. In order to spend more time on this, I think I might drop PHYS 234 (Quantum Physics 1). Well, was thinking of dropping it anyways (see below), this just gives me an additional reason. I’ve always had an interest in physics, always looked up to Richard Feynman for his passion and ability. I wanted to do a physics major but it seems that it is not practical at all, and there is really no use for it, skill wise and application wise. Start ups are hard with a physics major.

Makerbot Replicator 2 has arrived!
Makerbot Replicator 2 has arrived!

And on that note, PHYS 234 is just taught really poorly. It’s as if professor does not speak in English – teaching the course as if we already know the material. Here is a sample of it:

Reason 1 for dropping: Useless lecture notes.

I’m a person who likes to challenge thy self. I like working hard to figure things out (provided I have a genuine interest). But my interest in this course really boils down to sitting in lecture in a general state of confusion, then having to read the textbook and figure out how to do the assignment, all by myself.

His notes on the blackboard are so bad, that its value is near nil to me. I rarely refer to it because I don’t understand where everything falls into place – since he hardly ever writes descriptive words.

Reason 2 for dropping: Near zero assignment interest, hardly any fun, and missed an assignment.

I did not hand in the last assignment because it was twice as long as the previous assignments, and the content stopped following the textbook, which is my holy grail for figuring out how to do this course. I’ve gave up the marks for that assignment, assignment 6. And it’s not that I’m failing the assignments either! Not counting that assignment which I did not hand in, my assignment averages 95.6%.

I think I have near zero interest in this class, except for theory – which ironically he covers very very little of. Most of the things being covered is math derivations and (to me) manipulations of symbols. I thought it would be more focused on the quantum effects, to motivate one more through Quantum 2, and Quantum 3.

On a side note, other people are dropping too. Not that this is a reason itself.

On LEARN (A D2L Company online education content distribution platform), it said there were 85 people enrolled in this class. I did a head count today, 54 including myself. That is 63% attendance.

LEARN is updated at enrollment – meaning if one drops the course, it will not remove you as a student status (at least this is the case at time of writing, Mar. 1, 2013). The other 37% of people are either skipping lectures, or have dropped it (more likely because skipping lecture for such a hard course like this one does not make sense).

My experience summarized: really really reconsider if you need PHYS 234, especially if you’re not a physics major.

Don’t take a course which is notoriously high in drop rates and low quality. I’m not even sure I want to do a physics minor anymore – it is just so useless in comparison to what I learn from CS courses.

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