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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Physics and Astronomy : Undergraduate (School of Physics and Astronomy)

Undergraduate Course: Programming and Data Analysis (PHYS08049)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Physics and Astronomy CollegeCollege of Science and Engineering
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 2 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis course provides an introduction to computer programming and data analysis. It serves as a preparation for further study in physics-related degree programmes (and is open to students on these degree programmes only). The course consists of laboratory sessions and workshops to develop understanding, familiarity and fluency.
Course description Scientific Programming
- Introduction to python programming and Jupyter notebooks
- Data types, variables and operators
- Command line and file input and output
- Conditional statements, loops and lists
- Importing and using python modules, mathematical functions, simple graphs
- Introduction to functions
- Brief Introduction to Object Oriented Programming
- Reusable code, finding and fixing bugs

Data Analysis
- Uncertainty, accuracy and precision
- Mean value; standard deviation; error on the mean
- Using a spreadsheet for data analysis
- Combining uncertainties
- Graphs and graph plotting
- Least squares methods
- Application to a real-world problem
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites Students MUST also take: Modern Physics (PHYS08045) OR Linear Algebra and Several Variable Calculus (PHYS08042)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements This course is for School of Physics & Astronomy programme students only. Not available to visiting students, except those following a Physics & Astronomy programme.
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2024/25, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  0
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 100 ( Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 33, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 65 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) The course is made up of two parts Scientific Programming
and Data Analysis, both parts are assessed on a pass/fail basis.
Each part must be passed individually
Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Present a record of a computation or data analysis in an appropriate, clear and logical written form (e.g. fully documented computer code or annotated spreadsheet), augmented with figures and graphs where appropriate
  2. Assess whether an output from data analysis or a computer program is physically reasonable
  3. Locate and use additional sources of information (to include discussion with peers where appropriate) to resolve problems that arise in the computational physics laboratories
  4. Explain the importance of reproducibility of scientific work, and the role that quantitative statements of confidence in results play in achieving this
  5. Take responsibility for learning by attending laboratory sessions and workshops, and completing coursework
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
Course organiserDr Philip Clark
Tel: (0131 6)50 5231
Course secretaryMiss Katy Brown
Tel: (01316) 505310
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