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Topics: Pendulum, Time, Measurement Pages: 25 (4361 words) Published: February 21, 2013
Force and Motion

Study Guide

Written and Compiled by Steve Lockwood, 2003
With the support of the Staff at Prospect High School



Misconceptions - Force and Motion5

Pendulum Investigation6

Assignment - Galileo's Pendulum7

Pulse Rate Measurement Using a Simple Pendulum8

Human Speed11

Inclined Plane13

The Trolley Truck and Ticker Timer17

Investigation of Newton’s Second Law of Motion19

Summary of Practicum Assessment21


The prime objective of the Physics Unit is to further develop the concepts of force and motion. Although scientific report writing is required, scope exists for less able students to use journal style reporting. Students will develop these concepts by planning and carrying out investigative experiments. The course will run 8 weeks and is equivalent to 25 hours of classroom contact.

In addition to the prime objective the following concepts will be introduced (see footnotes for definitions):

1. Precision
2. Accuracy
3. Variability and sample size
4. Misconception
5. Human error
6. Experimental control
7. Generalisation
8. Formulae
9. Extrapolation and interpolation

Skill Development

Students have the opportunity to develop skill in the use of trolley trucks and ticker timers. In addition students have the opportunity to further develop their skills in the use of familiar measurement devices such as stop watches, trundle wheels, top pan balances and spring balances. This unit emphasises the use of normal mathematics in the interpretation of scientific data. In particular statistics and linear algebra will be used to interpret data and make predictions.

Students intending to study Physical Science in grade 11 or 12 will be advantaged through developing skill in the use of trolley trucks and the interpretation of ticker timer tapes. Physical Science is a prerequisite for the study of Physics or Chemistry in grade 12. It is advised that students intending tertiary study in Engineering or the Sciences enrol in Physical Science in grade 11.


Students will be assessed against the following seven criteria. The final test, the assignment and the scientific report entitled, ‘Investigation of Newton’s Second Law of Motion’ are the most significant items for assessment purposes. Earlier work will be used to develop skills and knowledge prior to final assessment being carried out.

Students are encouraged to keep a record of their performance against the criteria in their study guide in the space provided.

Criterion 1 (C1) – Collect quantitative data (take measurements) Criterion 2 (C2) – Communicate using prescribed formats
Criterion 3 (C3) – Rearrange data into table and graph form Criterion 4 (C4) – Draw reasoned conclusions
Criterion 5 (C5) – Plan and carry out scientific experiments to resolve issues Criterion 6 (C6) – Show understanding of scientific theories, concepts and laws Criterion 8 (C8) – Work individually or as a member of a team and meet deadlines

Misconceptions[1] - Force and Motion

Misconceptions are ideas that people have that can be shown to be incorrect. All of the following statements are false.

Write out each sentence or a selection of sentences, in your book, then illustrate why each statement is false. 1. Left alone, objects remain still.
2. If an object is at rest, no forces are acting on the object. 3. A rigid solid cannot be compressed or stretched.
4. Only living things can exert a force. Therefore, if an object is at rest on a table, no forces are acting upon it. 5. Force is a property of an object. An object has force and when it runs out of force it stops moving. 6. The motion of an object is always in the direction of the net force applied to the object. 7. Large objects exert a greater force than small objects. 8. A force is needed to keep...
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