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Simple Physics with Python: a workbook on introductory Physics with open source software  
  • +2
  • Andrea Mandanici,
  • Giuseppe Mandaglio,
  • Giovanni Pirrotta,
  • Valeria Conti Nibali,
  • Giacomo Fiumara
Andrea Mandanici
University of Messina

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Giuseppe Mandaglio
University of Messina
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Giovanni Pirrotta
University of Messina
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Valeria Conti Nibali
University of Messina
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Giacomo Fiumara
University of Messina
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Skills in computer science can have great value in studying, doing and communicating physics. As educators, we asked ourselves how to make students aware of that, and how to offer them a new and appealing approach to physics. We also wondered how to increase students' engagement, participation and understanding, particularly when lessons are delivered online. Thus, we began a project to develop study materials for an introductory course in physics for computer science and we chose to use open source software. The materials are organized as a set of Jupyter notebooks hosted on an open GitHub repository. The notebooks deal with fundamental concepts of physics related to everyday life, offering examples of what can be done with a few lines of Python code. In the notebooks we propose activities to observe phenomena, describe problems, experiment, acquire and analyze data, and model the behavior of systems. The contents are suitable for undergraduates, high-school students, and evergreen students. We have used the materials for lectures, guided laboratory activities and presentations to freshmen and younger students, and we plan to continue with this project.
08 Jan 2022Submitted to Computing in Science and Engineering
10 Jan 2022Editor invited a reviewer
27 Jan 2022Review Report #1 received
10 Mar 2022Published in Computing in Science and Engineering
01 Mar 2022Published in Computing in Science & Engineering volume 24 issue 2 on pages 1-5. 10.1109/MCSE.2022.3160011
Dirk Colbry and 1 more posted a review
Jupyter notebooks are very big right now and this article shows off some of what can be done with them and will make a good addition to CISE. The notebooks in this article all look well-made and are a good introduction to the format.