Physics of the Very Small

Queensland University of Technology

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Physics of the Very Small

  • Host University

    Queensland University of Technology

  • Location

    Brisbane, Australia

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Credit Points

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    This unit introduces physics which affects the universe on a microscopic scale. The concepts and phenomena studied here, such as atomic and nuclear physics, physical optics and waves are fundamental to later studies. Theory will be complemented by practical exercises.

    Learning Outcomes
    On completion of this unit, you will provide evidence of:
    1. Quantitative and qualitative scientific analysis of basic concepts of the physics of the micro universe.
    2. Data collection and analysis using scientific equipment during practical experiments in laboratory settings.
    3. Critical reasoning and problem solving techniques (using data acquired or provided) to evaluate results.
    4. Communicate scientific arguments by producing written scientific reports incorporating visual representations of scientific concepts and numeric data, including the generation of graphs.
    5. Effectiveness in planning and undertaking independent inquiry.

    The unit covers a number of modules, some of which may run in parallel.
    The Atomic and Nuclear Physics modules will introduce you to atomic and nuclear structure, and how atoms decay to produce ionizing radiation. Radioactive equilibrium, radiation detectors and gamma spectroscopy will also be covered.

    The introduction to Quantum Mechanics module will cover some of the conceptual topics in the physics of the microscopic world at an introductory level, including Blackbody radiation, matter waves and waveparticle duality, uncertainty principle, emission and absorption spectra, Bragg diffraction and the Franck-Hertz experiment.

    The Waves, Optics and Ultrasonics module will cover properties of waves and concepts such as the wave equation, interference and diffraction. The physical realisation of this material will then be studied in phenomena such as sound waves, ultrasound, optics, lasers and holograms.

    The final module will cover concepts of fluids on a microscale. Specifically, you will study colloids and their properties, as well as Brownian motion within a fluid.

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.

Some courses may require additional fees.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.