Contact info
Michael J. Gentile (
Teaching Assistants
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Course meeting times


Mondays, Wednesdays, & Fridays 06:00pm-07:30pm in the Physics Lecture Hall (PLH)

Section Time Location Instructor
H6 Mon & Wed 08:00pm-09:30pm SEC 210
H7Mon & Wed 08:00pm-09:30pmHLL 009
H8Mon & Wed 08:00pm-09:30pmARC 105
Office hours
Day Time Location Instructor
Monday 05:00pm-06:00pm PLH
Wednesday 05:00pm-06:00pm PLH
Fridays and exam days 05:00pm-06:00pm PLH Michael J. Gentile

Required course materials
IMPORTANT: If you took the first semester of General Physics (Physics 203) with me in Summer 2014 or later, or Physics for Sciences (Physics 193) with me in Fall 2013 or later you already have everything you need. If you didn't, here's what you need:
  • College Physics + Active Learning Guide for College Physics + Mastering Physics access codeHere's a link to the package on the publisher's website with all the information about it. There are digital and print options. The Rutgers Bookstore carries everything you need as well. If you choose to purchase it somewhere else make sure you get all three components (the Mastering Physics access code comes with every new copy of the textbook, but can be purchased online at any time).
    Lecture classwork
    During each lecture there will be one or more group tasks that you'll work on. Form a group of approximately 3 people and work together on the task. Each of you needs to write your own answer on a separate sheet of paper and hand it in at the end of lecture. Make sure your name and your TA's name is written clearly on your work. Lecture classwork is graded based entirely on effort and is graded out of 10 points.

    Recitation classwork
    Recitations have 2 parts.
    1. Groupwork: You will work in pairs on a variety of types of problems taken from the textbook involving what you have just been learning in lecture. This will usually require that you go back into the textbook, look at some of the examples, and possibly do a little reading, so please make sure you bring your textbook to recitation. Although you will work in groups, each person must submit their own work. Your TA will be moving around the room helping everyone so be sure to raise your hand if your group gets stuck.
    2. Extra Help & Instruction: Once you and your group have handed in their work feel free to stay for the remainder of the recitation and ask any other questions you may have. You can ask about homework problems, concepts we've been talking about in lecture, or anything else you may need some help with.

    The recitation classwork is graded based entirely on effort and is graded out of 10 points.

    Homework will be submitted online using MasteringPhysicsThere will be a homework assignment posted after each lecture corresponding to what was covered. Due dates/times can be found on the calendar page To reach MasteringPhysics click on the "Homework" link at the top of any page on this site.  Use the following information to register. If you already have an account from Physics 203 just log in and use the CourseID below to join the new course:
    • CourseID: RUPHYSICS204SUMMER2017
    Please let me know if you have any trouble.

    Three non-cumulative exams will be given to test you on what you have learned during the course.  Each exam will consist of 5 free response questions, each worth 10 points for a total of 50 points per exam.  Since they are free response questions there will be plenty of opportunity for partial credit.  You can bring a calculator (graphing calculators are fine, but no mobile devices/wearables/etc.). You may also bring a single 3x5" index card to each exam containing whatever useful information you prefer. The exam will include the same sheet of physical constants and data that are included with the practice problems. Practice problems will be posted approximately one week before each exam (see the exam practice problems once they are posted for the information that will be included with each exam).

    Grading Philosophy: Instead of hunting for errors in your work and taking points off, we will give you credit for what you can convince us that you understand.  This means that it is possible for you to get full credit even if you make a minor mathematical error somewhere, provided it doesn't lead to an answer that is unreasonable.  It also means that even if you arrive at an answer that makes sense you might not get full credit if we can't figure out the reasoning that got you there.  It is your responsibility to convince us that you understand what you are doing.  Let that guide your work.

    Practice problems: Practice problems problems with solutions will be posted approximately one week before each exam.  These problems are meant to give you a feel for the style of questions.  They are not meant to be a comprehensive reference of the content that is fair game for the exam.  Use the sections listed on the calendar page along with what was emphasized in all parts of the course to prioritize your studying.

    You can keep track of your grades using the online gradebook.  To access it just click on the 'Gradebook' link at the top of any page on this site.  Use the following information to log in:
    • Name: Your Rutgers NetID. (This is different than your student ID or SSN.  It's the username that you use to log in at the campus computer labs.  If you don't have an account, here's where you can sign up.)
    • Student I.D.: The password that goes with your NetID.
    The different parts of the course will contribute to your final grade in the following way:
    Tasks Percentage
    Lecture classwork 15
    Recitation classwork10
    Homework 20
    Exam 1 15
    Exam 2 20
    Exam 3 20
    I'll be using the following grading scheme for the course.  Yes, this means there is no curve.  BUT, relax, I'll make sure that the difficulty of the course is appropriate so there won't need to be one.  However, physics is very challenging and not taking the course seriously can lead to a D or an F.  So, attend all classes, complete all assignments on time, work hard, and heck, if everyone earns an A I'll be more than happy to give everyone an A.
    Letter grade Range
    A 90+
    B+ 87-89
    B 80-86
    C+ 77-79
    C 70-76
    D 60-69
    F <60

    Missing class
    You are expected to attend all lectures, recitations, and labs. If you expect to miss any please use the University absence reporting website to indicate the date and reason for your absence.  An email is automatically sent to me by that website. At that point I will contact you so we can discuss how you can make up the work or be excused from it, if possible. Legitimate reasons for missing class include:
    • Being sick enough to need to see a doctor (and you must provide me with a doctor's note)
    • Going to an academic conference or a required event connected with your studies/athletics at Rutgers (you'll have to provide documentation). Since you will know about this ahead of time you will need to take any exams you may be missing before you leave.
    • A death in the family.
    • Observance of a religious holy day.
    Going on some sort of vacation is not considered a legitimate reason, nor is taking two classes that conflict with each other.  I can't excuse you from class for these reasons but I will still let you take makeup exams provided you take them ahead of time. If you have the approval of a dean, I'll excuse you from whatever work they authorize. Makeup exams will not be given for any reason once the solutions are posted, so make sure you contact me immediately if you need to take a makeup exam. If you must miss class for more than one week, you will be directed to see a Dean of Students for assistance to help verify these circumstances.

    Free academic tutoring is available through the Rutgers Learning Centers (RLCs). The current subjects being tutored and the days and times can be found by going to the RLC website.

    Students with disabilities
    The Department of Physics & Astronomy maintains a webpage with all the information you'll need.

    Student-Wellness Services:

    Just In Case Web App
    Access helpful mental health information and resources for yourself or a friend in a mental health crisis on your smartphone or tablet and easily contact CAPS or RUPD.
    Counseling, ADAP & Psychiatric Services (CAPS)
    (848) 932-7884 / 17 Senior Street, New Brunswick, NJ 08901/
    CAPS is a University mental health support service that includes counseling, alcohol and other drug assistance, and psychiatric services staffed by a team of professional within Rutgers Health services to support students’ efforts to succeed at Rutgers University. CAPS offers a variety of services that include: individual therapy, group therapy and workshops, crisis intervention, referral to specialists in the community and consultation and collaboration with campus partners. 

    Violence Prevention & Victim Assistance (VPVA)
    (848) 932-1181 / 3 Bartlett Street, New Brunswick, NJ 08901 /
    The Office for Violence Prevention and Victim Assistance provides confidential crisis intervention, counseling and advocacy for victims of sexual and relationship violence and stalking to students, staff and faculty.  To reach staff during office hours when the university is open or to reach an advocate after hours, call 848-932-1181.
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     (848) 445-6800 / Lucy Stone Hall, Suite A145, Livingston Campus, 54 Joyce Kilmer Avenue, Piscataway, NJ 08854 /
    The Office of Disability Services works with students with a documented disability to determine the eligibility of reasonable accommodations, facilitates and coordinates those accommodations when applicable, and lastly engages with the Rutgers community at large to provide and connect students to appropriate resources.
    Scarlet Listeners
    (732) 247-5555 /

    Free and confidential peer counseling and referral hotline, providing a comforting and supportive safe space.