PHYSICS 2534 - Electromagnetism II

North Terrace Campus - Semester 2 - 2022

This course extends the level I introduction to electricity and magnetism. Circuit theory: revision of Kirchhoff's laws, RLC and AC circuits; complex impedance and AC circuits; filters, transfer functions. Vector analysis; index notation, line, surface and volume integrals; curvilinear coordinates; Gauss and Stokes theorem, Gauss's law, Dirac delta function; vector rotation and tensors. Electrostatics and electric potential, Poisson and Laplace equations, boundary value problems and method of images, magnetostatics, electromagnetic induction, Maxwell's equations, electromagnetic waves.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code PHYSICS 2534
    Course Electromagnetism II
    Coordinating Unit School of Physical Sciences
    Term Semester 2
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 7 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Prerequisites PHYSICS 2510, MATHS 2102 or MATHS 2106, MATHS 2101 - Other students may apply to Head of Physics for exemption
    Course Description This course extends the level I introduction to electricity and magnetism.
    Circuit theory: revision of Kirchhoff's laws, RLC and AC circuits; complex impedance and AC circuits; filters, transfer functions.
    Vector analysis; index notation, line, surface and volume integrals; curvilinear coordinates; Gauss and Stokes theorem, Gauss's law, Dirac delta function; vector rotation and tensors.
    Electrostatics and electric potential, Poisson and Laplace equations, boundary value problems and method of images, magnetostatics, electromagnetic induction, Maxwell's equations, electromagnetic waves.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Professor Derek Leinweber

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1. determine the transient and AC response of circuits containing R, L and C components;
    2. use methods of vector calculus to solve problems in electromagnetism;
    3. describe and explain the relationship between the electric field and the electrostatic potential;
    4. describe and explain the generation of magnetic fields by electrical currents;
    5. describe and explain electrodynamics, and explain Maxwell’s equations in vacuum;
    6. make appropriate decisions about the experimental uncertainty associated with every measurement, and analyse uncertainties correctly;
    7. keep a scientific record of experimental work;
    8. analyse the results of experiments and reach non-trivial conclusions about them;
    9. work effectively in a small team to complete a complex set of tasks;
    10. communicate results orally and in writing.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)

    Attribute 1: Deep discipline knowledge and intellectual breadth

    Graduates have comprehensive knowledge and understanding of their subject area, the ability to engage with different traditions of thought, and the ability to apply their knowledge in practice including in multi-disciplinary or multi-professional contexts.


    Attribute 2: Creative and critical thinking, and problem solving

    Graduates are effective problems-solvers, able to apply critical, creative and evidence-based thinking to conceive innovative responses to future challenges.


    Attribute 3: Teamwork and communication skills

    Graduates convey ideas and information effectively to a range of audiences for a variety of purposes and contribute in a positive and collaborative manner to achieving common goals.

    2, 7, 9, 10

    Attribute 4: Professionalism and leadership readiness

    Graduates engage in professional behaviour and have the potential to be entrepreneurial and take leadership roles in their chosen occupations or careers and communities.


    Attribute 5: Intercultural and ethical competency

    Graduates are responsible and effective global citizens whose personal values and practices are consistent with their roles as responsible members of society.


    Attribute 8: Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

    Graduates are self-aware and reflective; they are flexible and resilient and have the capacity to accept and give constructive feedback; they act with integrity and take responsibility for their actions.

  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources

    Recommended Resources

    Griffiths, D. J. (1999) Introduction to Electrodynamics, 3rd Ed, (Prentice Hall)
    Rojansky, V. Electromagnetic fields and waves
    Duffin, W. J. Electricity and Magnetism (Chapter 10)
    Grant, I. S. and Phillips, W. R. Electromagnetism (Chapter 8)
    Cheng, D.K., Field and Wave Electromagnetics (Chapter 9)

    Online Learning

    MyUni: Teaching materials and course documentation will be posted on the MyUni website (

  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes

    This course will be delivered by the following means:

    • Lectures 30 x 50-minute sessions with up to three sessions per week
    • Tutorials 11 x 50-minute sessions with one session per week
    • Practicals 6 x 4-hour sessions with one session per week for 6 weeks

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    A student enrolled in a 3 unit course, such as this, should expect to spend, on average 12 hours per week on the studies required. This includes both the formal contact time required to the course (e.g., lectures and practicals), as well as non-contact time (e.g., reading and revision).

    Learning Activities Summary

    The course content will include the following:

    Coursework Content

    • Circuit Theory
      • Revision of Kirchhoff’s Rules
      • Thevenin’s theorem, Norton theorem
      • Complex impedance
      • Addition of impedances
      • Power in AC circuits, power factor and phase angle
      • Impedance matching
      • Input and output impedances
      • Transients in RC, RL and RLC circuits
      • Filters: transfer function, low pass, high pass
    • Electromagnetism
      • Vector calculus: gradient, divergence, Laplacian, curl, Dirac delta function
      • Index notation: the Kronecker Delta, the Levi- Civita symbol, symmetry and anti-symmetry, Einstein summation convention
      • Applications of index notation: Dot and Cross product, matrix determinant, BAC CAB rule, Curl of Curl, Grad of Div, Div of Curl, Curl of Grad
      • Integral calculus: line, surface and volume integrals, Gauss’ theorem, Stokes’ theorem
      • Curvilinear coordinates, Jacobian matrix aspects, properties of the rotation matrix
      • Electrostatics: Gauss’ Law, electric potential, Poisson’s and Laplace’s equations, work and energy in electrostatics
      • Magnetostatics: Conservation of charge, continuity equation, Lorentz force law, Biot-Savart law, Ampere's force law, Ampere's law, magnetic dipole
      • Maxwell’s equations in vacuum.
    • Practical work (6 sessions)
      Experiments carried out in groups of two students, selected from
      • Signal and spectra
      • Electrical oscillations
      • Input/output resistance
      • Diodes and applications
      • AC potentiometer
      • Hall Effect
      • Ferromagnetism
      • Motion of a charged particle in a magnetic field
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Asessment taskType of assessmentPercentage of total assessment for grading purposesHurdle (Yes/No)Outcomes being assessed
    Test 1 (Circuit Theory) Summative 15% No 1 - 10
    Test 2 (Electromagnetism) Formative & Summative 11% No 2 - 5, 10
    Workshop preparation Formative & Summative 11% No Weekly
    Practical work Formative & Summative 18% Yes *** 6 - 10
    End of Semester Test Summative Min 45% Yes (40%) 2 - 5, 10
    Assessment Related Requirements

    To obtain a grade of Pass or better in this course, a student must maintain a suitable logbook for at least 5 practical sessions during the semester, attend the examination and achieve at least 40% in the final exam.

    Assessment Detail

    The circuit theory component is assessed by a 45 minute test during semester. The test contributes 15% of the final grade. There is no circuit theory component in the final exam.

    The electromagnetism component is assessed by a 45 minute test.. This test has a formative and summative role and addresses essential aspects of the learning objectives. This test contributes 11% of the final assessment.

    Workshop preparation
    There are 11 tutorials contributing 11% of the final assessment. Students need to hand in a copy of their work on the tutorial questions by 4 pm on Monday in the drop box by the School Front Office. The work is assessed on both effort and the correct implementation of course concepts.

    Practical work (Practical achievement and practical reports)
    Students work on an experiment until it is completed and they have an adequate report in their log book. Demonstrators provide formative assessment as the students are doing each experiment. Each student then selects one completed experiment and writes an extended lab report. The log book and report are assessed summatively.

    End of Semester Test
    This summative assessment activity comprehensively addresses learning objectives 1 - 10.


    Submission of Assigned Work
    Coversheets must be completed and attached to all submitted work. Coversheets can be obtained from the School Office (room G33 Physics) or from MyUNI. Work should be submitted via the assignment drop box at the School Office.

    Extensions for Assessment Tasks
    Extensions of deadlines for assessment tasks may be allowed for reasonable causes. Such situations would include compassionate and medical grounds of the severity that would justify the awarding of a replacement examination. Evidence for the grounds must be provided when an extension is requested. Students are required to apply for an extension to the Course Coordinator before the assessment task is due. Extensions will not be provided on the grounds of poor prioritising of time. 

    Late submission of assessments

    If an extension is not applied for, or not granted then a penalty for late submission will apply. A penalty of 10% of the value of the assignment for each calendar day that is late (i.e. weekends count as 2 days), up to a maximum of 50% of the available marks will be applied. This means that an assignment that is 5 days or more late without an approved extension can only receive a maximum of 50% of the mark.

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy ( course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.