Classical Mechanics and Special Relativity

University of Newcastle

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Classical Mechanics and Special Relativity

  • Host University

    University of Newcastle

  • Location

    Newcastle, Australia

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    This course replaces PHYS3290 If you have successfully completed PHYS3290 you cannot enrol in this course.

  • 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

  • Host University Units

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

    Classical Mechanics is the study of mass in motion. At large speeds, the theory of relativity applies. This course provides an intermediate treatment of kinematics, oscillatory motion, Lagrangian and Hamiltonian methods. High speed limits are discussed in the context of Special Relativity.


    Learning outcomes
    On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

    1. Knowledge and understanding of the classical laws of motion.

    2. Competency in using the essential mathematical skills needed for describing mechanics and special relativity

    3. Problem solving skills.

    4. Laboratory-based competency.

    5. An appreciation of the influence of classical mechanics and relativity on modern scientific development.

    6. An interest in the role of mechanics and relativity in the everyday world



    • Review of basics of motion: velocity, acceleration, Newton laws
    • Motion in a uniform force field
    • Oscillatory motion
    • Motion in a central force field, gravitation and Kepler's laws
    • Rotating coordinates and non-inertial reference frames
    • Many particle motion and modes
    • Rigid body motion, inertia
    • Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formulation
    • Special relativity, Minkowski space


    Contact hours
    Face to Face On Campus 3 hour(s) per Week for 9 Weeks
    9 weeks includes introductory lab session

    Face to Face On Campus 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

    Face to Face On Campus 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

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.