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Spring Term Classes

Jacob introduces his classes for his final term at Carleton.

Jacob introduces his classes for his final term at Carleton.

Earlier this year, I wasn’t sure what I would be taking in the spring. I had one last physics class to take as a graduation requirement, which left the rest of my schedule wide open. Initially, I thought I would take a chemistry course to help with grad school, but decided that I’d rather take physics classes that interest me. In this blog post, I want to highlight these courses!

Physics 342: Contemporary Experimental Physics

Physics 342, affectionately referred to as Contemp and jokingly referred to as Contempt, is the final course required for the physics major. I wasn’t able to take it last spring due to some scheduling conflicts, so I’m happy to be in it now. Contemp is a lab based course that focuses on experimental technique and data analysis skills. We work in small groups to complete three experiments, and then design our own experiment that we conduct over the final four weeks of the course.

Physics 352: Advanced Electricity & Magnetism

This is the physics course that I decided to take for fun! I struggled in Electricity & Magnetism when I took it the first time two years ago, but I’m doing much better with the material this time around. While I will probably not deal with too much of the material covered in this course when I go to grad school, the problem-solving techniques and the mathematical concepts are remarkably similar to those in fluid mechanics. I’m really enjoying this course so far, and I look forward to the rest of the term!


In the physics department, we get six credits for comps, which we can put toward winter term, spring term, or both (three each). I chose to put all six in winter term, which means that I’m not actually enrolled in comps even though I am still working on it. But I’m almost done! My final version is due next week, and then I will really only have two courses.

Nearly halfway through the term, I am enjoying my classes a lot. I had planned to take a light course load so that I could relax during my senior spring, but I’m happy I decided to fill out my schedule with some engaging physics classes!

Jacob is a senior physics major interested in climate science and oceanography. Jacob enjoys eating, sleeping, and hanging out with friends — the simple things in life. At Carleton, Jacob works in the physics department and captains the Gods of Plastic, Carleton’s nationally competitive Division III men’s ultimate team. Meet the other bloggers!