This online introductory course was developed at Three Rivers Community College (Norwich, CT) around 2000, one of the first online courses of the time and the college’s first fully online lab course. It was revised during the PHOTON2 project to incorporate best practices for distance learning, creating a more student-centered course. Over a dozen years of so it was offered to students from industry, teachers and faculty, and college students, often combining those 3 groups in one class. A very basic course, it assumed only high school algebra and some trigonometry.
The course is based on eight “home lab” hands-on experiments which are then analyzed and discussed with classmates through threaded discussions. Although we know some students preferred to use video conferencing or text, we tried to enforce the threaded discussions so all classmates (and the instructor) could take part. The required “lab kit” was the Edmund Optics Discovery Kit, no longer available although easily substituted. The actual labs were extensions of the Explorations in Optics (added math and analysis), later Dumpster Optics lessons, both found here. The text was Donnelly and Massa, LIGHT: Introduction to Optics and Photonics.
Because it was a fully online course, only html files remain. These can be downloaded here pho 101 online