Physics 203

LAB: Fall, 2016

John Jay College of Criminal Justice: the City University of New York

Martens Yaverbaum, Bean, Klafehn

LAST UPDATED May 18, 2017

Procedures & Policies*

*(including overview of formal report structure)


Some Resources re
Writing in Physics
Some Resources re
Knowledge in Physics


Lab Report Dos & Don'ts

Sample Lab Report for Lab 1: 3rd Person Plural

Sample Lab Report for Lab 1: All Passive Voice
(includes an explanation of uncertainty vs. error, a full description of the absolute uncertainty-interval calculation method, and an overview comparison of the absolute and fractional calculation methods)






Lab Day 1


1. Magnitude, Measurement & Motion

the POST-LAB for LAB 1
General Instructions for
writing Lab Reports

are included, among other places,
at the end of the handout ('manual') for
LAB 1.



First Lab Period: No assignment due.

Lab Day 2


Lab 2: Free-Fall
(Day 1)

LAB SECTION 02L1 (Mondays, 4:15 pm):

Reports for Lab 1 are Due 11:59 pm,
Tuesday Night,
September 6, 2016


1. Post-Lab for Lab 1, Magnitude, Measurement & Motion:

One per Lab Group.

2. Formal Report for Lab 1: M, M & M:

One per Lab Group.

3. PRINT OUT Lab 2: Free-Fall
as you will need to do for all future labs.



Lab Day 3

Lab 2: Free-Fall
(Day 2)

Lab 2 requires 2 Lab Periods
for proper Data Collection, etc.

There is nothing due for lab this period.


Lab Day 4

Lab 3: Commuting ByPlane


1. Post-Lab for Lab 2, Free-Fall:
One per Lab Group.

2. Formal Report for Lab 2, Free-Fall:
One per Lab Group.

This Formal Report must account for all |
the data collected,
the analysis performed,
and the findings derived from

BOTH days of Lab 2.

3. PRINT OUT Lab 3: Commuting By Plane
and BRING TO LAB--of course.

Galileo's Principle of Relativity

 Form #4


Lab Day 5

Lab 4: Ballistic Projectile
(Day 1: Measurement, Analysis)


Instructions for the
Post-Lab and Formal Report for Lab 3
contain some items that depart
from the typical procedures of Physics 203.

Lab #3:
Post-Lab &
Specialized Instructions for
Formal Report

Do NOT read the above document before completing the lab.

NB: The materials above will make sense only after collecting all data
and following all procedures for Lab 3.

Attempting to read these reporting instructions prior to making a full investigation
is likely to increase stress and confusion.


Lab Day 6

Lab 4: Ballistic Projectile
(Day 2: Uncertainty, Results)




Lab Day 7


Lab 4 Post Lab


Lab Day 8

Lab 5: Slow Down

PART A: Effects.

--> Prediction, Measurement and Acceleration.



Lab Day 9

Lab 5: Slow Down

PART B: Causes.

--> Interactions, Free-Body Diagrams, Coordinate Systems, Vector Components and Net Force.


Galileo's Principle of Relativity

 Form #5:

Unless acted on by a net external force, an object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion at the same speed and in the same direction.


Lab Day 10


Before writing your formal report for Lab 5, please read the two Lab 4 reports below. These are very strong reports written by PHY 203 students in previous semesters. They are not perfect reporsts of course. You will see Bean's grading marks on them.

The two samples are very different from each other, but note that they both have (1) a Data Collection section that is clear & thorough but does NOT go into calculations & analysis; (2) a detailed Analysis section in which they explain the logic behind their work & justify the assumptions they make.

Sample Report 1
Sample Report 2

Sample ET & RDC

After you have read through the above examples, complete the post lab & formal report for lab 5.

Lab 5 Post Lab

Galileo's Principle of Relativity

 Form #6:

     If object A exerts a force on object B, then object B exerts a force on object A of equal magnitude and opposite direction.

Lab Day 11


Lab 6: The Simple Pendulum

Day 1

(Period begins with midsemester review True/False assignment)



Galileo's Principle of Relativity

 Form #7:

Space is homogenous; Linear momentum is conserved.

Lab Day 12

Lab 6: The Simple Pendulum

Day 2


Galileo's Principle of Relativity

 Form #8:

Time is homogenous; Energy is conserved.

Lab Day 13

Board Meeting Gamma

1. Post Lab for Lab 6

2. True/False Answers

should be submitted along with lab report.

Galileo's Principle of Relativity

 Form #9:

Space is isotropic;
Angular momentum is conserved.

Lab Day 14

Lab 7. The Ballistic Pendulum



There is no Lab on Last Day

There is no final exam for lab.

Unofficial Course Evaluation

Post Lab for Lab 7

To ALL students writing lab reports for lab 7: you may have noticed that there are THREE suggested research questions listed in the instructions for the lab, but only the FIRST one is really a RESEARCH question. The other two are more like thinking questions. You should DEFINITELY think about them while writing your report, and talk about the issues they raise in your report, but only the FIRST one needs to be part of your official Research Question.


Note: All assignments are 1) highlighted, 2) DUE the day on which they appear and 3)

       Physics 204: Lecture

   Physics 203: LECTURE

   Physics 204: Lab

        Skies of Yesternight

Physics 203: LAB