Skip to Content

The Magic of Physics

Official description

This course provides a survey of Physics, including both Classical and Modern Physics.  It is designed for non-scientists, and assumes no background in either science or mathematics.  The approach to the course is broad rather than deep.  We will concentrate on the concepts underlying such fascinating topics as planetary motion, chaos, the nature of light, time travel, black holes, matter waves, Schrodinger's cat, quarks, and climate change.  We will uncover the wonders of the classical and the quantum worlds courtesy of Galileo, Newton, Maxwell, Einstein, Heisenberg and many others.

( PHY100H1 is primarily intended as a Breadth Requirement course for students in the Humanities and Social Sciences with no university-level background in physics. Any student with university-level credit in physics, including students with secondary school transfer credits in physics is ineligible to take this course).

Any PHY course taken previously or concurrently (except PHY196H1/ PHY197H1/ PHY198H1/ PHY199H1/ PHY202H1/ PHY205H1/ PHY207H1)
Recommended preparation
Breadth requirement
Distribution requirement

Additional information

The course is designed especially for non-scientists who want to learn how physicists are slowly unravelling the secrets of the universe. No prior knowledge of physics or mathematics is required.Any necessary elementary classical physics will be reviewed. There are two 2-hour lectures and one 2-hour tutorial per week. During the tutorials, the small group atmosphere will give students the opportunity to supplement the course material and pursue topics of special interest.

PHY 100H1 is primarily intended as a Science Distribution Requirement course for students in the Humanities and Social Sciences.

course title
summer, fall
year of study
1st year
time and location
24L: TR 1-3pm 12T: T 3-5pm Students/TAs: Room information available on ACORN ( Instructors: Room information available in the LSM Portal (
Sophie McGibbon-Gardner picture placeholder
Sophie McGibbon-Gardner