Course Information

Semester: Fall 2023
Course Title: Lab for PHYS 1145 / 1147 / 1151 / 1155 / 1161 / 1175
Course Number: PHYS 1146 / 1148 / 1152 / 1156 / 1162 / 1176
Credit Hour: 1
Location: Churchill Hall 3rd floor, lab rooms 0-7. Check the info monitors when you come in.
Lab duration: 2 hours 50 minutes every other week;

Lab Class Times:
All lab sections are assigned a group (A or B). Labs are every other week and will alternate between group A and group B. Group A starts the first week and group B starts the second week.

Find out if you are in group A or B:
Lab Groups – Fall 2023

Lab Calendar:
Lab Calendar – Fall 2023

Experiment Schedules:
PHYS 1146 – Fall 2023
PHYS 1148 – Fall 2023
PHYS 1152 – Fall 2023
PHYS 1156 – Fall 2023
PHYS 1162– Fall 2023
PHYS 1176 – Fall 2023

Lab Instructor Information
Please check your schedule to find out who your TA is. Contact information of your TA is available on the contact page.

Lab Supervisor / Directors Information
IPL office is located at CH 323.
– Prof. Baris Altunkaynak (IPL Supervisor),, (617) 373-2965
– Prof. Oleg Batishchev (IPL Co-Director),, (617) 373-5328
– Prof. Paul Champion (IPL Co-Director),, (617) 373-5328

Course Description
This course introduces students to laboratory methods in physics through a range of experiments aligned with the topics covered in the physics lecture course. During the lab course, you will perform 6 experiments and submit 6 lab reports. 

Co-enrollment in lab and lecture (and ILS where applicable) is required.

Learning Outcomes
By the end of the lab course, you will:

  1. Learn the fundamentals of experimentation in physics,
  2. Have a better conceptual understanding of physical laws,
  3. Learn how to use basic scientific instruments,
  4. Develop analytical and computational skills to analyze experimental data,
  5. Be able to identify sources of errors, quantify uncertainties in an experiment, and incorporate them in your analyses,
  6. Learn software used for data recording / analysis,
  7. Develop technical writing skills.

Required Textbook:
Please follow the link labeled IPL Manual in the IPL Information module on Canvas to purchase access to your lab manual directly from Macmillan. This will give you access to the lab manual and also to the pre-lab quizzes that you will need to complete. You can purchase access directly with a credit card. Access cards are also available from the campus bookstore. If you are retaking the same lab course, please fill out the form linked under IPL Information module on Canvas or contact the lab supervisor for your free access code. Please note that Physics 1 and 2 courses require separate purchases, but we will provide you with a free access code if you are retaking a Physics 1 or a Physics 2 course.

Title: Introductory Physics Laboratory
Edition: Fall 2023
Altunkaynak, Batishchev and Hyde
ISBN: 978-1-5339-4844-1

Lab Policies and Procedures:
Please review the Policies and Procedures webpage.

Pre-lab quizzes:

You will complete a pre-lab quiz before each lab in your online manual. Your pre-lab quiz grades will then get transferred to Canvas. For the first lab, the pre-lab quizzes will be due by the end of the week. Starting with the second lab, they will be due by the start time of your labs. You will have 3 attempts to complete each quiz, and your highest score will be your final score.

Attendance and Make-up Labs
You are expected to attend all lab sessions. You will get zero credit if you miss a lab or if you come in late. If you have a valid excuse for your absence (such as a medical emergency), you can make-up only one missed lab during the end of term make-up period or during the semester. All make-up labs must be approved by the IPL Supervisor/Directors in consultation with the TA.

Lab Procedures
Before lab:

  • Read over the relevant sections of the lab manual and complete the pre-lab quiz on Hayden-McNeil website before coming to lab.

During lab:

  • Listen to your TA’s introduction carefully. Do not attempt to start the experiment until after your TA’s introduction.
  • Work with your lab partner and complete all investigations and data analysis during the lab time.
  • E-mail your complete data file to your TA and your partner, and organize your lab bench before leaving the lab room.

After lab:

  • Write a lab report and submit it on Canvas. Lab reports are due a week after your lab by 11:59pm.
  • After submitting your lab report, make sure to double check that you uploaded the correct file into the correct assignment on Canvas.

At the end of the semester:

  • Complete the online TRACE evaluation and submit a proof of completion (a screenshot) by 11:59pm December 9, 2023 as your last assignment on Canvas. You will receive a bonus point for completing the TRACE evaluation. Note that the bonus point will only be used when determining the letter grade for lab and will not be included in the lab portion of the lecture grade.

Lab Reports
You are expected to write a lab report individually for each experiment and submit it on Canvas within a week by midnight after each lab. Your lab report should be written according to the posted guidelines. A late penalty of -5 points/day will apply for each day a lab report is submitted late. It is your responsibility to make sure your lab reports are uploaded properly on Canvas. In very rare occasions, if there are any problems with Canvas, you must email your report right away to your TA as a PDF attachment. The Canvas submission date/time or the time you send your PDF file to your TA will count as the official timing of your submission. The time stamp of your lab report file will not be accepted as the submission date/time of your report. No lab reports will be accepted after 11:59pm December 9, 2023.

You are expected to write the report on your own using your own words. Your lab report cannot be a full or partial copy of your lab partner’s or somebody else’s report. Your lab report also cannot contain copied sections of the lab manual. If you submit a report with duplicated or marginally rephrased material, it will be flagged by the “Turnitin” software that scans for such content. “Marginal rephrasing” occurs when your sentence structure and wording (or synonym substitutions) are highly correlated with other material. If this occurs, your grade will be subject to serious sanctions (typically a zero will be given for the report). This penalty will apply to all individuals with duplicate text in their reports so don’t copy and do not share your report with others. If a second incident of plagiarism is detected, you will receive a zero for the lab component of the course. You will also be reported to OSCCR.

Further information is available in the academic integrity policy of Northeastern university:


Lab reports are due a week after your lab by 11:59pm. No lab reports will be accepted after 11:59pm December 9, 2023.


The lab course will receive its own 1-credit grade, but will also count as 10-15% of your overall lecture course grade. Typical inclusive ranges for letter grades are:

A/A-: 90-100,
B+/B/B-: 80-90,
C+/C/C-: 70-80,
D+/D/D-: 55-70,
F: below 55

While your lab grade is determined by the grades of your reports, you can still be deducted points for not adhering to the following proper lab procedures:


  • Missed lab without documentation: -100 points.
  • Plagiarized lab report: -100 points. You will get 0 in lab if it happens twice and you will also be reported to OSCCR.
  • Not organizing your lab bench: -5 points.
  • Not emailing the data to your TA: -5 points.
  • Late submission of lab reports: -5 points per day.