Apply Now

ZUG1021 - Basic Concepts in Physics

Undergraduate – Module

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this module is offered.


Business, Engineering and Technology


South Africa
On-campus block of classes

  • Semester 1, 2018
    On-campus block of classes
    (Mainstream & Extended Programme)

12 credits, NQF Level 5


The module highlights the significance of understanding various types of motions that are encountered in our planet. It reinforces this understanding by introducing the students to Newton’s laws of motion and how these laws can be applied to particle dynamics and to particles in equilibrium. The emphasis is on friction and how frictional forces inhibit the motion. In addition the module covers an aspect of energy conservation with relative to objects in linear and rotational motion.  It also explains the governing principles in the areas of Thermodynamics, with emphasis on the First law of Thermodynamics.


On completion of the module, students will be expected to be able to:

1Understand the relevance of Algebra in Physics
2Determine suitable equations essential to analysing various forms of motion
3Apply Newton’s laws of motion to solve dynamics problems
4Derive and apply equations relevant to conservation of energy
5Apply appropriate methods required to analyse cases involving momentum and collisions
6Develop an understanding of the principles governing  oscillations and waves in Physics
7Understand the relevance of the first law of Thermodynamics in heat transfer


Coursework assessment: 40%
Examination: 60%

Workload requirements

The module introduces the students to elementary principles of mechanics, machine dynamics and Thermodynamics. It also provides the students with proficiency in laboratory techniques that are essential for conducting experiments, recording and interpreting the results accurately so that they can be communicated effectively in well written and presentable reports. There will be a combination of lectures, that will include interactive elements, tutorial work that will be done on an individual basis and experimental work to be done in the laboratory. All outcomes will be assessed by means of tutorials, class tests and a final examination.

Chief examiner(s)

Ms Dianne Schubert




Basic Mathematical Concepts