Physics for Scientists and Engineers: A Strategic Approach with Modern Physics, Global Edition
This fourth edition of Physics for Scientists and Engineers: A Strategic Approach continues to build on the research-driven instructional techniques introduced in the first edition and the extensive feedback from thousands of users. From the beginning, the objectives have been:
■ To produce a textbook that is more focused and coherent, less encyclopedic.
■ To move key results from physics education research into the classroom in a way that allows instructors to use a range of teaching styles.
■ To provide a balance of quantitative reasoning and conceptual understanding, with special attention to concepts known to cause student difficulties.
■ To develop students’ problem-solving skills in a systematic manner.
These goals and the rationale behind them are discussed at length in the Instructor’s Guide and in my small paperback book, Five Easy Lessons: Strategies for Successful Physics Teaching. Please request a copy if it is of interest to you (ISBN 978-0-805-38702-5).
What’s New to This Edition
For this fourth edition, we continue to apply the best results from educational research and to tailor them for this course and its students. At the same time, the extensive feedback we’ve received from both instructors and students has led to many changes and improvements to the text, the figures, and the end-of-chapter problems. These include:
■ Chapter ordering changes allow instructors to more easily organize content as needed to accommodate labs, schedules, and different teaching styles. Work and energy are now covered before momentum, oscillations are grouped with mechanical waves, and optics appears after electricity and magnetism.
■ Addition of advanced topics as optional sections further expands instructors’ options. Topics include rocket propulsion, gyroscopes, the wave equation (for mechanical and electromagnetic waves), the speed of sound in gases, and more details on the interference of light.
■ Model boxes enhance the text’s emphasis on modeling— analyzing a complex, real-world situation in terms of simple but reasonable idealizations that can be applied over and over in solving problems. These fundamental simplifications are developed in the text and then deployed more explicitly in the worked examples, helping students to recognize when and how to use recurring models.
■ Enhanced chapter previews have been redesigned, with student input, to address the questions students are most likely to ask themselves while studying the material for the first time. The previews provide a big-picture overview of the chapter’s key principles.
■ Looking Back pointers enable students to look back at a previous chapter when it’s important to review concepts. Pointers provide the specific section to consult at the exact point in the text where they need to use this material.
■ Focused Part Overviews and Knowledge Structures consolidate understanding of groups of chapters and give a tighter structure to the book as a whole. Reworked Knowledge Structures provide more targeted detail on overarching themes.
■ Updated visual program that has been enhanced by revising over 500 pieces of art to increase the focus on key ideas.
■ Significantly revised end-of-chapter problem sets include more challenging problems to expand the range of physics and math skills students will use to solve problems.
A new icon for calculus-based problems has been added. At the front of this book, you’ll find an illustrated walkthrough of the new pedagogical features in this fourth edition.
The 42-chapter edition of Physics for Scientists and Engineers is intended for a three-semester course. Most of the 36-chapter standard edition ending with relativity, can be covered in two semesters, although the judicious omission of a few chapters will avoid rushing through the material and give students more time to develop their knowledge and skills.
The full textbook is divided into eight parts: Part I: Newton’s Laws, Part II: Conservation Laws, Part III: Applications of Newtonian Mechanics, Part IV: Oscillations and Waves, Part V: Thermodynamics, Part VI: Electricity and Magnetism, Part VII: Optics, and Part VIII: Relativity and Quantum Physics. Note that covering the parts in this order is by no means essential. Each topic is self-contained, and Parts III–VII can be rearranged to suit an instructor’s needs. Part VII: Optics does need to follow Part IV: Oscillations and Waves, but optics can be taught either before or after electricity and magnetism. There’s a growing sentiment that quantum physics is quickly becoming the province of engineers, not just scientists, and that even a two-semester course should include a reasonable introduction to quantum ideas. The Instructor’s Guide outlines a couple of routes through the book that allow most of the quantum physics chapters to be included in a two-semester course. I’ve written the book with the hope that an increasing number of instructors will choose one of these routes.
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