Courses for Non-Majors
For students majoring in other sciences or wishing to enter medical school after Amherst, Physics 116 and 117 (Introductory Physics I and II) provide an introduction to mechanics and electromagnetism. Physics 119 (Life at the Nanoscale) provides an introduction to physics at the molecular scale. All have one semester of calculus as a requisite, have laboratory sections, and satisfy the requirements of medical schools for physics. Physics 116 and 117 are offered every semester.
We offer courses, such as Physics 109 (Energy), Astronomy 111 (Exploring the Cosmos), and Astronomy 112 (Alien Worlds), that take a quantitative look at the world without any prerequisites.
Other courses designed for the general student body have included Physics 114 (Relativity, Cosmology, and Quantum Physics) and First Year Seminars such as Thought Experiments. In all these courses, we expect the discussion, readings and writing to be sophisticated conceptually, while the technical details are kept to the minimum necessary.