Introduction

The Department of Mathematics and Physical Sciences, in accordance with the general objectives of Maasai Mara University (MMARAU) offers a programme of studies leading to Bachelor of Science (Physics) abbreviated BSc (Physics). The programme is designed to satisfy the needs and aspirations of the society from where its students are drawn. The programme is sufficiently flexible to permit and encourage students to develop interest in various fields and specialized options. The options are specifically tailored towards industrial applications and the overall pattern of employment requirements of physics in the job market.

The degree program runs over four academic years with two semesters in each year. The programme is executed though classroom and laboratory experiences in physics, seminars and research writings. Students are examined through written and in some cases oral examination administered during and/or at the end of each semester. The first year introduces the student to foundation courses in physics i.e., Mechanics, Thermal physics, Optics and properties of Materials Science) together with two laboratory courses emphasizing practical concepts in the four fundamental fields. In the second year, the student will cover two other branches of Physics; Electricity and Magnetism and Electronics and further topics of Mechanics dealing with Oscillations and waves. In a nutshell the programme ensures that practical application of theoretical knowledge is embedded in the Physics Laboratory courses (I-V) spanning the first five semesters. From the second semester of the third year and the entire fourth year the Physics programme focuses training on a chosen field of Applied Physics: Electronics, Material Science or Renewable energy. A student will work on a research project under a supervisor in his/her chosen area of specialization. Overall, in this programme, students have to take Physics and Physics related courses as well as non-physics courses which have been selected to ensure sound understanding of Physics.

The programme intends to provide graduates not only with specialized knowledge of the subject but also whole rounded person who has been trained and rigorously exposed to established scientific and technological procedures.

2.0 Philosophy of the programme

The ever-changing needs of the global economy, demands a highly skilled and focused manpower in science. Trained personnel fuels technology, the Physics programme of Maasai Mara University aims to produce well trained and ambitious world changers through academic rigor, partnership with the industry and leading research institutions locally and internationally.

3.1 Rationale of the Programme

The Physics curriculum designed by Department of Mathematics and Physical Sciences with the flexibility to accommodate emerging challenges. The programme will ensure Physics graduates of Maasai Mara University combine theory with practice and in the process gaining skills that produce results and improve technology in a morally upright and ethical society.

 3.1.1 Needs assessment/ market survey/ situation analysis

Physics is a fundamental science that relates well with other sciences and engineering courses. Thus physics is required in understanding the other courses offered by the university. Since it is one of the foundation courses in technology and innovation, its importance cannot be overemphasized. Science, Technology and innovation has been identified as a central pillar for Kenya's development as outlined in vision 2030. Towards this goal, scientists and engineers who are well grounded in physics need to be trained, to play a crucial role in the attainment middle income economy.

3.1.2 Justification of the programme

The Physics programmeas designed willempower its graduateswith the necessarymathematical,experimental and computational skills required for work in industry, researchand academic institutions. Moreover, the Physics graduates maypursue postgraduate studies in their chosen area of specialization.

 3.2 Goals of the Programme

The Physics programme is:

  1. To develop graduates who are well grounded in the fundamentals of Physics, able to use the acquired knowledge in a wide range of practical applications.
  2. To develop a creative thinker with the power of imagination to enable graduates work in research, industry, academia qualifying them to be strong policy practitioners.
  • To inculcate in the student a consciousness the needs and aspirations of the society and augment the sense of responsibility towards the same.
  1. To produce graduates who emerge as market leaders in both white and blue color jobs within the country.
  2. To equip students with a good understanding of the principles of Applied Physics, aspects of which will be at the leading edgeof knowledge.
  3. To produce Applied Physics graduates with the necessary skills for team work in an industrial and scientific research environment.
  • To produce graduates who will competently undertake postgraduate work in Physics and its related fields.

3.3 Expected learning outcomes of the programme

  1. Knowledge and understanding

The physics programme enables students develop competencies required to:

  1. Solve problems in Physics and offer relevant solutions using appropriate mathematical tools.
  2. Understand physical phenomena and model their behaviour through analytical and/or mathematical techniques.
  • Apply principles of operation of physical devices and instruments
  1. Know the environmental and social impact of a Physicist’s activities
  2. Understand business and management techniques relevant to a Physicist

 

  1. Cognitive skills/Application of knowledge

The physics graduate should be able to:

  1. Execute and critically analyze results of an investigation and make logical conclusions.
  2. Use scientific principles in solutions of physical problems.
  • Formulate research proposals, conduct the research, analyze data obtained from the research and report accurately in various branches of physical processes.
  1. Use computers in the manipulation of physics problems.

3.4 Mode of Delivery and Duration of the programme

The programme will be delivered mainly through lectures, experiments, computer simulation, seminars and workshops.

The programme shall normally take four academic years of two semesters per academic year.

3.5 Academic regulations

3.5.1 Admission requirements

To be admitted into the B.Sc. Programme in the Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, a candidate must:

  1. i)Meet the minimum University admission criteria
  2. ii)Have passed the K.C.S.E with a minimum average grade of B- in the following Cluster of subjects:

CLUSTER A                                                              CLUSTER B

PHYSICS                                                                  PHYSICAL SCIENCES

MATHEMATICS                                                         MATHEMATICS

CHEMISTRY                                                             BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES

GEOGRAPHY                                                            GEOGRAPHY

AND ONE OTHER SUBJECT FROM GROUP I

3.5.2 Course requirements: Class attendance/Attachment

Students must satisfy class attendance requirements spelt out in the University examination regulations besides attending a 3-months mandatory industrial attachment at the end of the third year of study.

3.5.3 Student Assessment policy/Criteria

The common University Examination Regulations shall apply.

  • Theory Courses

Continuous assessment tests (at least two CATs)                                         30%

End of semester exam; A written paper of 2 hours duration                          70%

  • Laboratory Courses

A minimum of 5 laboratory reports and maximum of 6 laboratory reports per semester that incorporates all the specific areas emphasized in the laboratory course  60%

End of semester lab test; A written paper of 1 hour duration                          40%

  • Seminar Courses: (a)

Continuous assessment based on oral presentation of at least three seminars50%

Evaluation of a written report                                                                           50%

  • Research Project

Assessment on the candidate's work and on the submitted Project Report    70%

Oral examination                                                                                           30%

An external examiner shall be involved in the assessment of the submitted report and may participate in the oral examination.

  • Industrial attachment

Industrial attachment and relevant Field visits are essential parts of this programme. These will be graded as follows:

 (a) Field/logbook assessment               70%

 (b) Attachment report                            30%

3.5.4 Grading system

The general MMARAU examinations regulations and grading shall apply. In addition, the following grades, representing varying degrees of achievement, are used: A, B, C, D, and E. these letters carry grade points and significance as shown. All scores will be calculated and converted to letter grades as follows;

Grade  A         70 – 100          First Class                              

Grade B         60 – 69            Upper Second class

Grade  C         50 – 59            Lower Second Class

Grade  D         40 – 49            Pass

Grade  F          00 – 39            Fail

3.5.5 Examination regulations

Examinations will be governed by the common rules and regulations for undergraduate examination regulations of 2010 of Maasai Mara University.

3.5.6 Moderation of Examinations

Internal examiners will also be required to moderate examinations before being taken to the external examiner. The external examiner shall be involved in the moderation of examination question papers and marked scripts. In addition the external examiner may assess research project reports and may participate in the oral examination of a candidate.

3.5.7 Graduation Requirements

To qualify for the award of a BSc (Physics) degree, a student shall satisfy all the university requirements pertaining to the award of a degree. A students must take a minimum of 170 units of Physics, Physics-related and non-physics courses offered in this curriculum and he/she must pass all the examinations offered in the first, second, third and fourth years of study.

3.5.8 Classification of degrees

The classification will be done as stated in the Maasai Mara University common rules and regulations for undergraduate examinations.

3.5.9 Regulations for Project work

A student registered in accordance with the regulations will be required to pursue his/her project under the guidance of the supervisor appointed by the departmental board (teaching staff).

Project Evaluation: Final year physics students shall undertake a project and submit report. The project shall be evaluatedbased on performance in oral presentations and a formal written report. Oral presentation will be done before a departmental board. The departmental board will be allowed to ask questions and may contribute to the assessment of the candidate. The duration of the oral presentation shall be limited to within 40 minutes. After the oral presentation the board of examiners shall compile the scores and determine the average score which shall be entered as the final mark in the project in 3.5.3(d) above.

3.6 Course evaluation

3.6.1 Student’s evaluation

Direct assessment is through a range of in-semester tests that include, written examinations, assignments, homework, laboratory reports,tutorial lessons, tests, quizzes, essays, simple project, exercises and/or quizzes.

Final year project assessment is based on performance in oral presentations and a formal written report.

The maintenance of standards will be achieved by both internal and external moderation of examinations. Above allthe overall assessment process will be subject to external examiner scrutiny who will provide benchmarking to international standards.

Some of the lecture courses may be examined primarily or completely by assignments, where the nature of the course is unsuitable for assessment by examination.

3.6.2 Staff performance

To be based on student evaluations, evaluation by head of department and self-evaluation

3.7 Course coding

The course codes consist of two parts: PHY followed by space and 4 digits. PHY stands for “Physics” and means it is a Physics course. The first digit indicates the year the course is being offered or the level of the course. The second digit indicates the semester the course is offered. The third two digits is the course’s serialization. For example PHY 2109 means that the course is a second year course offered in the first semester with a serial ‘09’. If the third two digits are “zeros”, then it means that the course is a common course. University-wide common courses are italicized; Programme core courses and required courses are in normal font; Elective courses are in bold font.

3.8 Definition of a unit and credit hours:

1 unit ≡ 3 lecture hours per week per semester.

1 credit hour ≡ 2 Tutorial hours per week per semester.

1 credit hour ≡ 1 hour of laboratory work per week per semester.

1 credit hour ≡ 1 lecture hour per week per semester. 

4.0 PHYSICS PROGRAMME STRUCTURE

YEAR ONE SEMESTER ONE

Course Code

Course Title

Credit Hours

CMJ 1100

Communication Skills

3

PHY 1103

Physics Laboratory I

3

PHY 1104

Mechanics

3

PHY 1105

Introduction to Thermodynamics

3

CHE 1104

Physical chemistry I

3

COM 1103

Introduction to computers and Computing

3

MAT 1104

Differential Calculus

3

ZOO 1100

HIV & AIDS and Lifestyle diseases

3

 

TOTAL UNITS

24

                  YEAR ONE SEMESTER TWO

Course Code

Course Title

Credit Hours

COM 1200

Computer and Information Literacy

3

PHY 1206

Physics laboratory II

3

PHY 1207

Properties of matter 

3

PHY 1208

Geometrical Optics

3

MAT 1208

Analytical Geometry        

3

COM 1205

Computer Applications I

3

 

TOTAL UNITS

18

YEAR TWO SEMESTER ONE

Course code

Course Title

Credit Hours

REL 2100

Philosophy & Critical thinking

3

ENS 2100

Environmental Skills

3

PHY 2109

Physics laboratory III

3

PHY 2110

Oscillations and waves

3

PHY 2111

Electricity and magnetism

3

MAT 1207

Integral Calculus

3

MAT 1206

Linear Algebra I

3

MAT 2110

Vector Analysis

3

 

TOTAL UNITS

24

YEAR TWO SEMESTER TWO

Course Code

Course Title

Credit Hours

PHY 2212

Physics laboratory IV

3

PHY 2213

Electrical Circuits

4

PHY 2214

Classical mechanics

3

COM 1204

Procedural programming I

3

MAT 2111

Ordinary Differential Equations   I

3

MAT 2109

Linear Algebra II

3

STA 1103

Probability and Statistics I

3

                                                                   

TOTAL UNITS

21

YEAR THREE SEMESTER ONE

Course Code

Course Title

Credit Hours

PHY 3115

Physics Laboratory V

3

PHY 3116

Thermodynamics

3

PHY 3117

Mathematical Physics I

3

PHY 3118

Physical Optics

3

PHY 3119

Digital Electronics

3

MAT 4103

P.D.E. I

3

MAT  2214

Numerical Analysis I

3

                                                                   

TOTAL UNITS

21

YEAR THREE SEMESTER TWO

Course Code

Course Title

Credit Hours

PHY 3220

Electromagnetism

3

PHY 3221

Quantum mechanics I

3

PHY 3223

Industrial Attachment

3

PHY 3224

Research Methodology

2

BBM 3200

Entrepreneurial and work Skills

3

Areas of specialization

Material Science

PHY  3225

Introduction to Material Science

3

PHY  3226

Solid State Physics I

3

Electronics

PHY 3227

Electronics I

3

PHY 3228

Electronics II

3

Renewable energy

PHY 3229

Solar, thermal and Photovoltaics

3

PHY 3230

Biomass and wind energy

3

                                                                   

TOTAL UNITS

20

                

 YEAR FOUR SEMESTER ONE

 

Course Code

Course Title

Credit Hours

PHY 4131

Quantum Mechanics II

3

PHY 4132

Matlab programming

3

PHY 4133

Measurements and Instrumentation

3

PHY 4134

Research Project

3

Areas of specialization

Material Science

PHY 4135

Polymer Physics

3

PHY4136

The Physics of Semiconductor Devices

3

PHY 4137

Electrical Engineering materials

3

Electronics

PHY4138

Microprocessors and applications

3

PHY4139

Electronic Circuits  and devices

3

PHY 4140

Transducers

3

Renewable Energy

PHY 4141

Hydro, Geothermal and Tidal Energy

3

PHY 4142

Basic Principles of Nuclear Reactors

3

PHY 4143

Nuclear Energy

3

 

TOTAL UNITS

21

YEAR FOUR SEMESTER TWO

Course  Code

Course Title

Credit Hours

PHY 4244

Statistical mechanics

3

PHY 4245

Atomic and Nuclear Physics

3

PHY 4246

Computational Physics

3

PHY 4134

Research Project

3

Areas of specialization

Material Science

PHY 4247

Thermodynamics of materials

3

PHY 4248

Solid State Physics II

3

PHY 4249

Elasticity and Plasticity

3

Electronics

PHY 4250

Telecommunication and Fiber optics

3

PHY 4251

Introduction to lasers

3

PHY 4252

Data communicationAntennae and propagation of signals

3

Renewable energy

PHY 4253

Heat and mass transfer processes

3

PHY 4254

Energy systems and management

3

PHY 4255

Power electronics

3

 

THREE AREA OF SPECIALIZATION COURSES

9

                                                                   

TOTAL UNITS

21

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