PSC 102 - Physical Science II
Investigates fundamental concepts of chemistry and mechanics through a hands-on, applications based approach. Includes such topics as atomic structure, periodic table, bonding, chemical reactions, intermolecular forces, organic chemistry, motion of objects, forces and how they relate to simple machines, mechanical energy, and fluid mechanics. Complements Physical Science I, PSC 101 . Recommended for non-science majors, including education majors.
Prerequisite(s): READING LEVEL 2 and WRITING LEVEL 2 and MATH LEVEL 2 and PSC 101
Lecture Hours: 45 Lab Hours: 30
Meets MTA Requirement: Natural Science Lab
Outcomes and Objectives 1. Participate in the process of science.
A. Make observations.
B. Design experiments.
C. Conduct experiments.
D. Formulate and test hypotheses.
E. Collect data.
F. Analyze data.
G. Draw conclusions.
H. Report results.
2. Demonstrate the competent use of common instruments and technology used in scientific investigation.
A. Use the metric system and common instruments of measure to determine mass, length, volume, and
B. Correctly use various kinds of scientific equipment and measuring devices.
3. Communicate in the language of the discipline.
A. Read critically.
B. Write effectively.
C. Listen actively.
D. Speak effectively.
E. Develop and interpret graphs and flow charts.
4. Engage in the critical thinking of the discipline.
A. Integrate concepts.
B. Solve problems.
C. Draw logical conclusions.
D. Make predictions based on evidence.
E. Identify trends and patterns.
5. Associate and cooperate with peers.
A. Work in small groups.
B. Accept responsibility for his/her share of the work.
6. Use the metric system of measurement.
A. Recognize reasonable measurements and appropriate units.
B. Demonstrate correct measurement techniques using a meter stick, graduated cylinder and balance.
C. Estimate common measurements using metric units.
D. Use the measuring equipment to acquire data, carry out appropriate conversions between units and analyze
the significance of the data.
7. Explain the scientific method.
A. Define measurements, controls, variable, data, inferences, observations, hypothesis, theory, scientific law,
and the scientific method.
B. List the steps in the scientific method.
C. Identify the components of a well-designed experiment.
D. Distinguish between observations and measurements.
E. Distinguish between a guess, hypothesis, and theory.
F. Draw a valid conclusion from a set of observations.
G. Construct and interpret graphs.
H. Develop a hypothesis and propose an experiment for a testable question.
8. Explain the basic concepts of mechanics.
A. Objectives that relate to motion:
1. Describe the difference between average speed, instantaneous speed, average velocity, and
2. Be able to calculate the average speed, average velocity, distance, displacement, and times for trips.
3. Describe that acceleration is a rate of change of velocity.
4. Work problems that have both positive and negative accelerations to calculate final velocities,
displacements, or time of travel.
5. Recognize that any object regardless of direction of travel is undergoing free-fall if gravity is the only
force acting on it.
6. Be able to calculate final velocities, distance traveled or time of flight for various problems in
B. Objectives that relate to force:
1. Explain that a force is a push or pull on an object.
2. Describe the difference between inertia and each of Newton's three laws of motion.
3. Work problems in one-dimension where forces are acting on an object to create motion.
4. Explain that the net force acting on an object is the summation of all forces acting on it and does not
include forces acting on separate objects.
5. Describe why two objects of very different masses colliding still have the same force acting on them as
the other object and yet can experience very different
6. Recognize that when the acceleration of an object is zero it is in a state of equilibrium and the net force is zero.
7. Explain that terminal velocity results when a falling object experiences a force from air resistance exactly equal and opposite its weight.
C. Objectives that relate to momentum and energy:
1. Explain what is meant by momentum.
2. Calculate the momentum for various moving bodies.
3. Explain the concept of conservation of momentum.
4. Explain the concept of impulse and how it applies to various situations such as air bags in vehicles.
5. Use conservation of momentum and work with systems of objects.
6. Explain the differences between elastic and inelastic collisions.
7. Explain various types of energy how energy can be transferred to other objects and can be transformed into other types of energy.
8. Use the simplified equation for work of W=Fxd to calculate the energy required to move an object to a new location.
9. Use conservation of mechanical energy to calculate the velocity an object will have after falling or sliding down a frictionless ramp from
a given height.
10. Explain the work-energy theorem and how it relates to conservation of energy.
11. Explain power and solve simplified problems relating power, work and time.
12. Calculate the mechanical advantage of simple machines.
13. Describe how the total amount of work to lift an object does not decrease even with an ideal simple machine.
14. Explain efficiency as it relates to machines.
D. Objectives that relate to gravity and satellite motion:
1. Explain that any two objects that have mass are attracted to each other by gravity.
2. Explain why we don’t feel the effects of this force when someone walks by.
3. Explain what an inverse square law means.
4. Use the universal gravitational constant to calculate forces between various objects.
5. Explain how tides are a product of gravitational effects and why the time between high and low tide is 6 hours.
6. Explain how and when leap tides occur.
7. Explain the difference between apparent weightlessness and true weightlessness.
8. Work simple projectile motion problems such as balls launched horizontally from a given height.
9. Describe the path that a ball will take if thrown at various angles from a level playing field.
10. Explain how satellites are “falling” around the body they are orbiting.
11. Describe the difference between circular orbits and elliptical orbits.
12. Describe an ellipse.
13. Relate satellite motion in an elliptical orbit and conservation of energy to explain the change of speeds that occur.
14. Explain what is meant by apogee and perigee.
15. Explain escape speed.
E. Objectives that relate to fluid mechanics:
1. Explain density
2. Experimentally determine the density of different materials using a variety of means to measure the volume.
3. Explain pressure as it relates to forces from rigid objects.
4. Explain pressure due to the weight of fluids.
5. Explain what is meant by buoyancy in a liquid and how it relates to Archimedes’ principle.
6. Explain why a ship made of steel can float.
7. Explain the effects on pressure due to volume changes.
8. Describe how atmospheric pressure is the result of the weight of the air above you.
9. Explain how barometers work.
10. Explain buoyancy of an object in a gas.
11. Explain Bernoulli’s principle and how it relates to the shape of an airplane wing.
Outcome 9: Explain the basic structure of the atom.
A. Objectives that relate to atomic particles:
1. Explain the location, relative size, and charge of the proton, neutron, and electron.
B. Objectives that relate to atomic arrangement:
1. Describe the Bohr Model of the Atom.
2. Describe the Electron Wave-Cloud Model of the Atom.
3. Explain why atomic spectra are line spectra rather than continuous spectra.
4. Explain the dual nature (particle and wave) of the electron.
5. Describe the electron wave-cloud model of an atom in terms of probability.
6. Explain the definition of isotopes.
7. Identify isotopes of an element in terms of number of protons and neutrons.
8. Name common isotopes of hydrogen, carbon, chlorine, and bromine.
10. Explain the basic concept of matter.
A. Objectives that relate to phases of matter:
1. Describe the three basic states of matter and the differences in intermolecular distance and forces in them.
2. Explain the difference in elements, compounds, and pure substances and provide examples of each.
3. Describe physical and chemical changes and provide examples of each.
4. Describe a material as heterogeneous or homogeneous.
5. Distinguish between a solution and a suspension.
11. Understand the organization and function of the Periodic Table of the Elements.
A. Objectives that relate to the periodic table:
1. Identify the 80 most common elements by their chemical symbol on the periodic chart and properly spell their names.
2. Identify portions of the chart that correspond to metals, non-metals, metalloids, transition elements, and representative elements.
3. Identify groups and periods in the chart.
4. Identify common families (groups) by name.
5. Explain the significance of the noble gas configuration.
6. Explain inner shell shielding.
7. Describe periodic trends in atomic size, electron affinity, and ionization energy.
12. Understand the principles of chemical bondinge
A. Objectives that relate to ionic bonds:
1. Describe the formation of a cation and explain which elements tend to form cations.
2. Describe the formation of an anion and explain which elements tend to form anions.
3. Explain how cations and anions come together to form neutral compounds.
B. Objectives that relate to covalent bonds:
1. Describe the formation of a covalent bond and explain which elements tend to form covalent bonds.
2. Explain the difference between single, double, and triple bonds and provide and example of compounds with each.
3. Explain electronegativity and how it causes formation of polar bonds.
4. Explain how polar bonds can form polar molecules.
13. Understand the principles of molecular interactions.
A. Objectives that relate to intermolecular forces:
1. Explain dipole-dipole interactions, hydrogen bonds, and London Forces and provide an example of a compound that exhibits each.
2. Explain how intermolecular forces affect solubility of compounds and their physical properties.
B. Objectives that relate to chemical solutions:
1. Identify the solute and solvent in a solution.
2. Predict whether or not a solution will form between two substances based on their intermolecular attractions.
3. Perform simple concentration calculations for solutions.
4. Explain the difference between and unsaturated, saturated, and super-saturated solution.
5. Explain the relationship between solubility and temperature for gases in liquids.
6. Explain surface tension.
14. Understand the principles of chemical reactions.
A. Objectives that relate to chemical equations:
1. Balance an equation for mass and charge.
2. Describe the relationship between energy and chemical reactions as written in chemical equations.
3. Describe a catalyst and how it works.
4. Explain the difference between a forward reaction and an equilibrium reaction.
B. Objectives that relate to acid/base reactions:
1. Describe acids and bases using the Arrhenius and Bronsted definitions.
2. Identify simple compounds as acids or bases.
3. Explain the concept of acid, base, and neutral using the pH scale.
4. Describe a buffer solution.
C. Objectives that relate to redox reactions:
1. Explain oxidation and reduction in terms of electron movement.
2. Identify the anode and cathode in a reaction and explain what takes place at each.
3. Explain the operation of a simple battery.
15. Understand the principles of atomic, molecular, and molar masses.
A. Objectives that relate to atomic and molecular masses:
1. Use the periodic table to determine the atomic mass of an element.
2. Calculate the formula mass or molecular mass of a compound in atomic mass units using the periodic table.
B. Objectives that relate to atomic and molecular masses:
1. Explain the concept of the mole and Avogadro’s number.
2. Determine the mass of a mole of an element or compound in grams/mole using the periodic table.
3. Calculate the mass of a given number of atoms or molecules.
16. Understand the basic concept of organic chemistry and functional groups.
A. Objectives that relate to compound classes and functional groups:
1. Describe the atomic arrangement that indicate hydrocarbons, alcohols, phenols, ethers, amines, amides, ketones, aldehydes,
carboxylic acids, and esters.
2. Explain the difference between addition and condensation polymers.
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