Learning List recently reviewed OpenStax College’s College Physics for AP Courses, which is a comprehensive, open education resource (OER) resource that supports Advanced Placement (AP) physics instruction at the high school level. Instruction covers two college semesters and addresses the content for AP Physics 1 and 2. The course is available online at no cost (https://openstaxcollege.org/textbooks/college-physics-ap); low-cost print and eBooks are also available.
The first half of College Physics for AP Courses covers material for AP Physics 1, including kinematics, Newton’s laws, motion, force, energy, oscillating motion and waves, electricity and currents. The second half addresses AP Physics 2, including fluid dynamics, thermodynamics, electromagnetism, optics, quantum mechanics, atomic and nuclear physics. Instruction is organized in terms of physics concepts and begins with detailed definitions of terminology and explanations of concepts. As lessons progress, students learn how concepts are relevant to real-world phenomena. Frequent example problems frame how concepts can be used to understand and solve every day problems (e.g., What acceleration can a person produce when pushing a lawn mower?). Example problems provide step-by-step guidance in identifying mathematical solutions and detailed discussions of problem-solving strategies. The text provides frequent opportunities for students to apply what they have learned and check their understanding using problems presented in textboxes (e.g., “Applying the Science Practices” and “Check Your Understanding”). Other textboxes highlight formulas, note important and/or interesting information, and identify frequent misconceptions.
College Physics for AP Courses is an open-source resource that encourages science educators to submit new information and course material to ensure instruction is accurate, up-to-date, and relevant to students’ lives. Content is math dependent; students will need a strong understanding of concepts in algebra and statistics in order to be successful. The course does not include a laboratory component, so a separate laboratory manual will be needed in order to fully address the AP Science Practices.
About OpenStax College*
OpenStax College is a nonprofit organization committed to improving student access to quality learning materials. Through partnerships with companies and foundations committed to reducing costs for students, OpenStax College is working to improve access to higher education for all. OpenStax College is an initiative of Rice University and is made possible through the generous support of several philanthropic foundations.
*The content in this section is provided by or adapted from OpenStax College.
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