Classical Mechanics/ Math Methods 1

Browse Course Materials

Course Materials are organized by collection (e.g., administrative, clicker questions, etc.). Links to both printable PDFs and editable source documents have been provided.

If you prefer, you can download the entire course archive in a zip format.

You can also view all materials by navigating to the "Source Documents" folder.


This course has been taught in both the 3-day 50 minute meeting and 2-day 75 minute meeting format. The sample documents provided below detail a possible calendar for the 2-day 75 minute meeting format. The Weekly Calendar provides details of topics and activities covered over the course of the semester. The Daily Log details each lecture and includes detailed reflections on the presentation of topics and on the use of particular pedagogical practices for that lecture.

Sample Lecture notes

We have provided a PDF of lecture notes used in the Spring 2012 course. Steven Pollock authored the lecture notes.

Lecture notes are organized broadly by topic.

  • 1 - Newton's Laws and Coordinate Systems [PDF]
  • 2 - ODEs, Projectiles, and Air Resistance [PDF]
  • 3 - Linear and Angular Momentum, Center of Mass [PDF]
  • 4 - Energy [PDF]
  • 5 - Gravitation [PDF]
  • 6 - Oscillations [PDF]
  • 7 - Fourier Series, PDEs [PDF]

Concept Tests/Clicker Questions

In our implementation, students are required to own a personal response device (a clicker). These concept tests are posed during lecture and were used to facilitate discussion and test comprehension of different concepts. We provide the modifiable source in PPT format, a PDF version for posting or reading, and a second PDF version with notes about each clicker question.

Clicker questions are organized broadly by topic.

Tutorial & Activities

The course makes use of a number of tutorials, whiteboard activities, and demonstrations. Tutorials are typically given in-class; instructors walk around the room checking on student progress and posing additional questions. We have compiled detailed notes on implementation best practices. Whiteboard activities make use of markerboards. Students work in small groups to write out solutions to problems which are then held up for instructors to view. Often, instructors ask groups of students to explain their solutions. Below, we have compiled the activities used in the most recent implementation of the course.

We have adapted tutorials from both the Intermediate Mechanics Tutorials project and OSU's Paradigms course.

User guides for the Intermediate Mechanics Tutorials can be found here.

Homework Questions/Assignments

Weekly homework sets were solved by students. Homework questions were written and compiled the week before homework was given to students. Because homework questions followed the pace of the course, it makes little sense to enumerate the sets for distribution. Below, we have provided a series of PDFs (organized by topic) that contain each homework question we used. In addition, we have provided a zip file (SOURCE) for each topic that contains the editable source documents for these PDFs (LaTeX + figures).

Homework questions used at CU Boulder

Homework questions are organize broadly by topic.

Homework Assignments from Previous Semesters' courses

It is often helpful to review complete homework assignments assigned by other instructors to make note of their length and difficulty. Below, we have provided a zip file to each semesters' homework sets assigned by instructors who have taught our transformed course. The zip file contains source (LaTeX + figures) as well as compiled PDFs of each homework set.

Homework Solutions

Solutions to homework sets are available to instructors. The link below is password protected. Please contact Steven Pollock to obtain access to the solutions.

Exams (secure)

Exams and solutions are available to instructors. Please contact to obtain access to exams and solutions.


To prepare for class each week, we asked students to complete a series of online questions that covered topics and concepts that would be taught that week (Preflights). The goals of these questions was two-fold: (1) To get students read the textbook and be prepared for lecture and (2) To provide us with information about where students might struggle with particular topics and concepts.

These questions followed roughly the topics on the calendar and are ordered by the week in which they were given. We have provided the questions as both PDFs and editable Word documents because the questions came from a propriety educational content mangagement system used by CU Boulder. Plain HTML forms and Google Forms have been used in the past.