Introduction to Physics

Academic year
Subject Area
Área Científica do Menor
Language of Instruction
Mode of Delivery
ECTS Credits
1st Cycle Studies

Recommended Prerequisites

11th year secondary school Physics; Linear Algebra (1st university level); integral and differencial calculus.

Teaching Methods

Theory classes, with detailed presentation of basic concepts and the origin of the formulation of fundamental models, principles and theories. Examples of applications to real situations. Use of audiovisual media and simple demonstration experiments.

Problem solving in theoretical-practical (TP) classes, where the various theoretical concepts have to be applied to practical situations.

The evaluation consists of a final written exam or, alternatively, three mid-term exams exempting from the final exam.

Learning Outcomes

Recognize the importance of Physics in interpreting and explaining natural phenomena and the role of Mathematics as a fundamental language of methodologies and techniques used in Physics.

Understand and use basic concepts and principles from a variety of subjects in Physics, recognizing the physical meaning of variables and functional relations of physical laws.

Prepare, process, interpret and communicate physical information, using relevant bibliographic sources, adequate discourse and appropriate tools.

Good use of adequate methodologies and techniques in applications related to concrete problems.

Main competences to develop: generalization, abstraction, analysis and synthesis capacities; information management and ability to formulate and solve problems; critical reasoning and adaptability to new situations.

Work Placement(s)



Newton laws in the mechanics of the particle and particle systems; interactions and force; rigid body equilibrium.

Electrostatics and bonding forces.

Elastic properties of materials.

Hydrostatics; flow of ideal and viscous fluids; movement of solids in viscous fluids. Surface tension and capillarity.

Electric currents; magnetic field; electromagnetic induction.

Oscillatory movement; resonance. Mechanical and electromagnetic waves.

Radioactive decay

Head Lecturer(s)

Rui César do Espírito Santo Vilão

Assessment Methods

Exam or midterm Exam: 100.0%


Apontamentos do professor; folhas de problemas | Teacher’s notes; selection of problems.


D. C. Giancoli, Physics for Scientists and Engineers, 3rd ed., Prentice Hall, New York (2000).


J.W. Kane, M.M. Sternheim, Physics, 3rd ed. John Wiley & Sons, New York (1988).