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29:129 Electricity & Magnetism Fall 2004

research group
online reprints
prospective students
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SYLLABUS (updated 23 Nov. 2004)

[class info] [instructor] [grades] [exams] [homework]
[lecture schedule] [announcements] [calculators] [more]

class information

Lecture 301VAN
  Monday, Wednesday, Friday
  • required: Intro to Electrodynamics, 3d Ed, by David J. Griffiths
  • recommended: Mathematical Handbood, by Spiegel, (Schaum's Outline Series)
  • math: 22M:028, or 22M048, or equivalent
  • physics: 29:028 or equivalent
Goal of the course
  • Gain a command of basic electricity & magnetism theory.
  • Develop mathematical and problem solving skills.
  • Learn methods needed for 29:130 and other physics courses.
Computer " MathCad is available using PCs in 201 VAN; they are available 9 - 5;if you have a problem with a printer, either look for Larry Schroeder in 210 VAN, or email yourself a screenshot and print it elsewhere.

Instructor: John A. Goree
Office: 512 Van Allen Hall
E-mail: john-goree *at*
so that I know it's not junk mail, please begin "subject" line of your email with 29:12
Phone: 319-335-1843
Office Hours:
  • 10:30-11:30 Monday
  • 11-12 the day before homework is due (this is usually a Tue or Thur)
  • or just stop and look for me
  • or make an appointment.

What determines your grade:

  • three exams (15% each)
  • homework, best 10 of 12 (20%)
  • final exam (35%)
  • +/- grades will be assigned
  • *frequency of class participation may affect your grade by a +/- level if your grade is borderline


Class participation:

  • Reading assignments will be announced in class.
  • Complete each assignment before the indicated lecture.
  • Be prepared to ask and answer questions about these readings.
  • Discussion between student and instructor is required.
  • See * above, re. your grade.


What they're like:

  • All exams are closed book.
  • You will be provided a page of vector identities, vector derivatives, and fundamental constants.

What to bring:

  • Bring a pencil, an eraser, and a calculator. See Policy on calculators.
  • No other notes, materials, or electronic devices are permitted.

The most effective way to study:

  • Before you do homework problems:
    • read the book before the lecture
    • attend the lecture
    • review your lecture notes the same day as the lecture
    • work through example problems
  • Then do the homework
  • After you do the homework, review:
    • your completed homework
    • notes
    • text


The role of homework:

  • Problem sets will be discussed in class on the date due.
  • Late work will not be accepted, due to above.
  • Staple the pages
  • Draw a box around the answer
  • Prof. Goree can assist you with homework during office hours


  • Solutions will be provided to the Physics library, which will post on the web.

Lecture Schedule

See this pdf file for a schedule including homework assignments and exams:


updated info will be posted here occasionally after the semester begins:

20 Sept. 2004 Homework Set #4 postponed two days:
I will collect this homework set Friday Sept. 24, not Wednesday Sept 22 as originally scheduled. The reason for this delay is to allow the lecture to cover the required material before the homework is due.
30 Sept. 2004

HW6: Omit problem 48

Exam 3 is rescheduled:

  • it was previously scheduled for Mon Nov., 15
  • it is now scheduled for Wed Nov. 17

Monday 15 Nov. I will give a lecture and there will be office hours.

There will be no lecture Friday Nov. 19

21 Oct. 2004

Exam scores:

Histograms of scores:
Exam 1
Exam 2
Exam 1 and 2 combined scores with letter grade
Also of interest: Correlation of exam and homework scores

HW set 8, problem 18, solve only inside the sphere, r < R.

23 Nov. 2004 Exam 3 average score was 12.8/30, or 43%. It was more difficult than exams 1 and 2 which had average scores of about 63%. Histogram for exam 3.

Calculators in Exams
  • A simple scientific calculator that does arithmetic, squares and exponents, roots, trig functions, and scientific notation, is best for the exams. It should have a numerical display only.
  • You are not permitted to use a calculator with a display capable of showing graphs, formulas, or text messages.
  • You are not permitted to use a calculator that has any communication capability.


The following items, required by the College or the University to be included in a syllabus, may be of interest to some students:

  • Departmental Office: 203 VAN, DEO Thomas Boggess
  • Nominal study time: For each semester hour credit in the course, students should expect to spend two hours per week preparing for class sessions
  • If you have a disability: I would like to hear from anyone who has a disability which may require some modification of seating, testing, or other class requirements so that appropriate arrangements may be made. Please contact me during the first two weeks. You may contact me during my office hours.
  • If you have a complaint: (1)The student should ordinarily try to resolve the matter with the instructor first. (2) If the complaint is not resolved to the student's satisfaction, the student should discuss the matter further with the course supervisor (if the instructor is a teaching assistant), the departmental executive officer, or, in some departments, another faculty member designated to receive complaints. (3) If the matter remains unresolved, the student may submit a written complaint to the Associate Dean for Academic Programs, 120 Schaeffer Hall (335-2633). (Graduate students should be directed to the offices of the Graduate College, 205 Gilmore Hall, 335-2137.)
  • If you cheat: If I suspect a student of academic fraud or cheating, I will inform the student in writing. I will report cheating to the dean and recommend discipline.
  • If you're from another College: This course is given by the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. This means that class policies on matters such as requirements, grading, and sanctions for academic dishonesty are governed by the College of College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Students wishing to add or drop this course after the official deadline must receive the approval of the Dean of the College of College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Details of the University policy of cross enrollments may be found at:

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