Classes begin today at IPFW. I'm taking a belated day off from the day job, getting a few things done at home (I was going to take Friday off for my birthday, but I had something time-specific to do, so today's it). More to the point, though, PHYS 218 gets underway this evening at 6 pm, and I'll once again have Enhanced Excuses™ for not posting to my poor, neglected blog. I can't say I enjoy grading exams, quizzes, or lab reports, but I do loves me some teaching physics. I have 56 customers lined up for tonight, and I hope each and every one will get a good value for his or her money. (Not all of them will, so my fallback hope is that, for those who don't, it won't be because of something I did, or failed to do.)
Last week I had email from a former student who is now a day-job co-worker. The humor she passed along was something I'd seen before, but I got a smile out of it all over again. I share with you here a couple of alleged test items:
This person actually was well on his way to a correct solution to the problem; he correctly calculated the gravitational potential energy of the object at its starting point (mgh), and its elastic potential energy at its stopping point (0.5 * k *x^2). He should simply have equated the two and solved for x. For some reason, he elected to bag the problem instead. I'd have given him a few points' worth of partial credit; he really had most of the work done.
The next person: not so much.
Anyway, here's hoping for correct solutions from my students; and, failing that, I hope to see some funny ones.