In Spring 2019, I took Honors Conceptual Physics.
This class provided an overview of principle topics of physics, including electricity, magnetism, waves, movement, forces, matter, and heat. Each unit focused on the core concepts of each topic, followed by algebraic applications if possible. Then, it would be applied to the real world and connected to previous units. Our labs related to the units being taught in the lecture. They were hands on, interactive, and encouraged collaboration. This lab stood out to me as being one of the only labs that I have taken where the activities directly related to the information expected on the tests, which helped me retain the material.
I loved this class because it completely flipped my previous perceptions of physics. Going in, I expected it to be extremely difficult. I took physics online in high school, however; it did not challenge me or interest me. This class was completely different, and it ended up being my favorite class of the semester. The material was presented in an approachable way. The language of the course was secular, and a lot of worldly applications were used in order to give context to the lessons. I learned to appreciate physics and find beauty in it. I felt confident and empowered because I was actually learning in a class that I had perceived as a subject that I would “never understand”.
My artifact is a part of my Unit 3 exam. This exam was different than our typical exams. Normally, the tests included a couple of pages of short answer questions, followed by multiple choice question. Because this class was an Honors section, we were challenged in groups to create a solution to a real world type of problem. We were asked to write a solution to improve the business of an airline through different scenarios, all relating to the physics and economic value of different airplane models. Our group researched the different aspects of the question and brought notes to the exam period, where we collaborated to synthesize an answer. There was not one correct answer to the problem. The interdisciplinary nature of the prompt challenged us to think in a different way, which is the core of what the Cormier Honors College is about. The test reflected on how the course embraced the crossing of disciplines, which truly enhanced the experience as a scholar.