Introductory Electricity

Why take our class?

Like the occasional book or banana, this class is good for your brain.

We will start from the very basic ideas of electric charges and conclude with fundamental applications to electric circuits and beyond. In between, we will study electrostatic interactions, conductors, insulators, and capacitors. Along the way, we will emphasize applications so that students can see the profound practicality of what they learn. Some of the potential applications that we will cover include superconductivity and semiconductors. To further enforce the course content, we will spend a major portion of the class getting students' hands dirty by constructing a Van de Graaff generator and an electrostatic motor. This way, each student walks away with a little demonstration of electricity and magnetism to show his or her friends.

Who should take this class?

This course is designed for the enthusiastic high school students who wish to explore exciting topics in electricity and have not had formal instruction in the subject.

Prerequisites: We will use basic algebra and trigonometry extensively. Whatever mathematics used beyond algebra and trigonometry will be introduced in the course. Thus, students without prior exposure to the more advanced mathematics will not be at a disadvantage. Students should also be familiar with basic concepts of forces (Newton's laws) and energy.

Meet the Instructors

Christian Cardozo

I am a second-year electrical engineering, computer science, and physics student at MIT. My primary areas of interest in physics are electricity and magnetism, which weave themselves into my studies in electrical engineering, and cosmology, on which I produced "Cosmology for the Science Enthusiast", a ten minute video introduction to the universe that went on to be well-received by members of the MIT community at a campus-wide screening. Having taught for past MIT ESP programs like HSSP, I can undoubtedly say I am very excited to working with you all this summer, enlightening you about electricity and its inextricable ties to the world of today.

David Mayo

I am a sophomore majoring in electrical engineering and computer science (6-2) at MIT. I am fascinated by robotics, artificial intelligence, computer vision, online education, and electronics. This fall I will be a TA for classical mechanics (8.01). I am very excited to explore the world of E&M with you this summer.

Phong Vo

I am a third-year undergraduate Physics major at MIT. My current research interest is in solid-state physics experiments and theory. I am also fascinated by certain aspects of particle & nuclear physics and cosmology. In addition to my research and schoolwork, I also dedicate much of time sharing what I know with others through teaching. As such, I look forward to discovering electricity with you over the next two months.