Course Meeting Times

Lectures: 2 sessions / week, 1.5 hours / session
Recitations: 2 sessions / week, 1 hour / session
Labs: 3 sessions / term, 3 hours / session.

Text Book

E.M. Purcell. Electricity and Magnetism. Berkeley Physics Course, Volume 2, Second Edition.


As outlined in the calendar. Additional reading material may be provided in paper or electronic form.


Three quizzes: 20% each
Homework / Recitation: 25%
Laboratory: 15%

You may not pass the course without completing the laboratory.


There will be three in-class (closed books and notes) quizzes. There will be no final examination in this course. A missed exam will receive zero grade unless students contact their instructors before the exam.


There will be 12 homework assignments. You will have at least one week's time to work on each problem set. No late homework will be accepted without prior approval by your instructor.


There are three laboratory exercises you are expected to complete, to be chosen from the following four exercises.

Force between coils
RLC circuits
Microwaves and Radios


Electromagnetism has fascinated philosophers, mathematicians, physicists, engineers, experimenters and theorists for well over two millenia- it isn't surprising that this fascination has led to what is today our best understood field theory (Quantum Electrodynamics).

It first captured the attention of the Greek philosophers as early as 500B.C. who knew of the 'electron' (Greek word for amber) and the 'magnetes' (a naturally occurring stone in Magnesia, a region in Asia Minor) as two distinct properties of some materials. From these two apparently distinct interactions we will see how a single interaction has emerged through remarkable experiments and quantitative analysis that define the scientific method and reasoning of the modern era.

Even if complete and successful, we will see how the next step to the unification of forces will come back to Electromagnetism and test it by asking fundamental questions like why is the electric charge in nature quantized or why we can't find an isolated magnetic north or south pole.

8.022 is a demanding course. This means you should have solid understanding of one variable calculus as well as mechanics with calculus at the university level. Moreover, it is assumed you have taken or should be enrolled in a course in multi-variable calculus (18.02 or 18.022).

What do we expect from you?

  • Participation: lectures and recitations are fundamental. This is where you will understand the concepts, will interact with your instructors and fellow students, will bring up any of your questions.
  • Homework: the problem sets are here to assist you digest the concepts, teach you problem solving methodology, stimulate your thinking further. Try to solve all problem sets and go back to the solutions to figure out why you missed any. Don't be surprised if excerpts from given problem sets or small variants are included in your in-class exams.
  • Quizzes: there will be 3 exams covering only the most recent material (as described in the syllabus) that will test your understanding of concepts and not your memory. A table with most frequently used formulas will be given to you together with the exam.

This is a fun course and I am looking forward to working with you in order to make it as fruitful as it can be.