Physical Sciences

People who pursue the study of physical science are interested in the processes that drive the world in which we live. If you are fascinated by the tremendous energy contained in a single atom, the power of a lightning bolt, the vast magnitude of the night sky or the surprising results of a chemical experiment, then a career in one of the physical sciences might be very satisfying to you. Iowa Central Community College offers a wide range of courses in the area of Physical Science.

The principal branches of physical science are physics, chemistry, astronomy, and earth science. Iowa Central has the general education courses Physical Science and Physical Science by Inquiry, which contain an introduction to these areas.

Physics

Physics is the scientific discipline that seeks to identify a small number of quantitative laws to define our understanding of matter, energy, space, and time. It is typically subdivided into the following areas: classical mechanics, thermodynamics, electromagnetism, relativity, quantum mechanics, optics, condensed matter, high energy, and cosmology. Iowa Central offers four courses in this area, including a two-course sequence in College Physics, which does not require calculus, and another two-course sequence in Classical Physics, which does require calculus.

Chemistry

Chemistry is the study of the composition and properties of matter and its transformations. The subdivisions of chemistry include analytical chemistry, biochemistry, physical chemistry, organic chemistry, inorganic chemistry and chemical engineering. Iowa Central has seven chemistry courses starting with the beginning course Elementary Principles of Chemistry. This leads to a two- course sequence in Chemistry and another two-course sequence in Organic Chemistry. For applications in more specific fields, especially health related programs, the courses General Chemistry and Organic & Biological Chemistry are offered.

The Physical Science, Physics and Chemistry courses are often combinations of lectures and labs. The fundamental properties and laws of the physical world that are discussed in the lectures are studied further by hands-on activities in the labs. The use of computers and related technology is growing each year in both lectures and labs. Faculty members strive to update their courses to keep pace with new developments in science and experiment with a variety of teaching techniques to more fully involve the student in the learning process.

Potential Careers

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  • University Research and Training
  • Engineering
  • Industrial Laboratory Research
  • Material Research

Chemistry Careers

  • Forensic Chemist
  • Water Quality Chemist
  • Agricultural Chemist
  • Quality Control Chemist

Physics Careers

  • Geophysicist
  • Medical/Radiation Physicist
  • Research Scientist
  • Astronomer
  • Data/Systems Analyst

Course Schedule (Suggested Program of Study)

First Semester

Course # Course Title
Credit Hours
ENG-105 Composition I
3.0
MAT-210 Calculus I
4.0
CHM-165 General Chemistry I
4.0
XXX-XXX Social Science Elective*
3.0
XXX-XXX Humanities Elective*
3.0
 
Total Hours: 17.0

Second Semester

Course # Course Title
Credit Hours
ENG-106 Composition II
3.0
MAT-216 Calculus II
4.0
CHM-175 General Chemistry II
4.0
CSC-110 Intro to Computers
3.0
XXX-XXX Humanities Elective*
3.0
 
Total Hours: 17.0

Third Semester

Course # Course Title
Credit Hours
SPC-112 Public Speaking
3.0
CHM-261 Organic Chemistry I
4.0
PHY-212 Classical Physics I
5.0
SDV-108 The College Experience
1.0
XXX-XXX Social Science Elective*
3.0
 
Total Hours: 16.0

Fourth Semester

Course # Course Title
Credit Hours
CHM-271 Organic Chemistry II
4.0
PHY-222 Classical Physics II
5.0
XXX-XXX Humanities Elective*
3.0
XXX-XXX Social Science Elective*
3.0
 
Total Hours: 15.0
 
A.A. Degree Total Hours: 65.0

Suggested High School Courses for Science Majors:
Physics, Chemistry, Algebra, Advanced Math, Calculus

To ensure best transfer, student and advisor should confirm math and science classes with transfer institution.

*Course must be chosen from appropriate AA/AS general education list.

Instructors