Back to Learning Catalog



Estimated Completion Time

2 segments / 32-36 weeks

Enroll/Extend in Adult Education Physics 1 (lab) click here


In each module of Physics I, students discover the contributions of scientific geniuses like Galileo, Newton, and Einstein. Through their work, students learn the concepts, theories, and laws that govern the interaction of matter, energy, and forces. From tiny atoms to galaxies with millions of stars, the universal laws of physics are explained through real-world examples. Using laboratory activities, simulations, images, and interactive elements, students follow in the footsteps of some of the world’s greatest thinkers.


Note: content varies depending on course version. For currently enrolled students, please refer to the syllabus located in the course information area for curriculum specifics.

Course Requirements

Required Materials:

  • Scientific Calculator – with logarithmic functions and scientific notation capabilities.
  • Thermometer
  • Graph paper – many lessons will require you to create graphs by hand for the activities.
  • Graphing Analysis 4 Software – course includes directions on how to download this software for Windows, MAC OSX 10.x.x, and Chromebook.
  • Where JAVA is required in labs, a Windows or MAC machine is recommended, as Chromebooks will not allow the security setting to be adjusted so the simulation can function correctly.

Major Topics and Concepts

Segment 1

  • Plagiarism, Libel, Slander
  • Theory vs. law, science vs. pseudoscience
  • Measurement Techniques
  • Graphical Analysis
  • Experimental Techniques
  • Lab Design
  • Speed, Velocity, Acceleration
  • Problem-Solving Methods
  • Vector and Scalar Quantities
  • Equation Manipulation
  • Freefall and Gravity
  • Newton’s Laws of Motion
  • The Fundamental Forces
  • Newton’s Law of Universal Gravitation
  • Coulomb’s Law
  • Mass and Weight
  • Free-body Diagrams
  • Uniform Circular Motion
  • Momentum and Angular Momentum


Segment 2

  • Temperature and Heat
  • Conservation of Thermal Energy
  • Kinetic and Potential Energy
  • Work and Power
  • Conductors and Insulators
  • Electrical Fields and Forces
  • Simple, Series, and Parallel Circuits
  • Schematic Diagrams
  • Simple Harmonic Motion
  • Wave Behavior and Equation
  • Ray Diagrams
  • Lenses and Mirrors
  • Snell’s Law
  • Atomic Theory
  • Atoms and Molecules
  • Fundamental Particles
  • Duality of Light
  • Radioactivity
  • Nuclear Fission and Nuclear Fusion
  • Special Relativity and Cosmology



Credits 1


  • Data Collection
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of measurement by explaining graphing techniques and explaining systems of measurement. 
  • Kinematics
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of kinematics by explaining speed and velocity, analyzing motion graphs, and describing the effects of gravity on free-fall motion.  
  • Motion
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of motion by explaining Newton’s laws of motion, explaining principles of force, and explaining principles of momentum.
  • Electricity
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of electricity by explaining electrical conduction and insulation, explaining the role of electrons in magnetic fields, and explaining resistance.
  • Energy
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of energy by explaining the relationship between temperature and energy, explaining the factors affecting potential and kinetic energy, and explaining the relationship between work and energy. 
  • Particles
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of particles by explaining the postulates of atomic theory, comparing nuclear fission and nuclear fusion, and explaining the postulates of special relativity. 
  • Waves
    Students will demonstrate an understanding of waves by describing waves and their properties, comparing electromagnetic and mechanical waves, and explaining light refraction.


Algebra I; Algebra II recommended

Attend a virtual open house

We offer regular online open house webinars where VLACS staff members provide parents and students with an overview of our programs and answer questions about online learning.