NFYB18001U Experimental Physics (EF)

Volume 2020/2021

BSc Programme in Physics

  • Oral and written presentation of scientific results
  • Connection between theory and experimental results, conclusions from data and scientific knowledge
  • Measurement strategies to minimize systematic and statistical uncertainties
  • Theoretical background of and algorithms for nonlinear analysis of data, including model building
  • Computer exercises to train data analysis and presentation
  • Experimental exercises in groups to train data analysis and presentation
  • An experimental project (group work). The project can be performed in one of the research groups at NBI.
Learning Outcome

A student will

  • know and identify parts of an experiment: measurement set-up including detector, sample and possible control of sample environment
  • know and be able to choose between different methods for data collection
  • know about typical laboratory set-ups and larger scale experiments
  • know and be able to explain the connection between theory and experiment in the scientific method and in physics in particular

After completion of the course the student is able to:

  • Set up and perform different type of experiments;
  • Identify and mitigate sources of systematic and statistical noise;
  • Plan and perform longer experiments as part of a team, handle time-management of an experiment, keep a record (logbook);
  • Model an experiment and apply nonlinear statistical data analysis using Python (/MatLab) or similar software;
  • Visualize data and design plots and figures of scientific quality using adequate software;
  • Draw conclusions from experimental data;
  • Report in writing on performed experiments using LaTeX on a level adequate for scientific work, e.g. BSc. or MSc. project or manuscripts for peer-reviewed international scientific journals;
  • Present a project orally as adequate for a scientific conference;


A student will acquire competences to perform experiments independently, to perform numerical analysis of data and uncertainties and to report on results scientifically in the form of talks, reports and articles.

See Absalon for final course literature. The following is an example of expected course literature.


Statistics - A Guide to the Use of Statistical Methods in the Physical Sciences, Roger Barlow.
supplemented by notes and online material published on the course homepage.

Solid knowledge of mechanics, electromagnetism and quantum mechanics corresponding to the first 21 months of physics studies at a university. Basic laboratory skills.
Lectures, exercises and project work
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Lectures
  • 20
  • Class Instruction
  • 8
  • Preparation
  • 90
  • Practical exercises
  • 24
  • E-Learning
  • 10
  • Project work
  • 50
  • Exam
  • 4
  • Total
  • 206
Continuous feedback during the course of the semester
Peer feedback (Students give each other feedback)

Feedback will be given continuously during the course - as a dialogue about suggested and conducted experiments, about the resulting products (report, scientific manuscript or oral presentation) as well as in connection with the oral presentation in the form of peer feedback.

7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Continuous assessment
Continuous assessment with grade based on hand-ins, exercises and poster session (45% in total);
Number and weight of hand-ins are published on the course homepage;
1 project report (35%), oral presentation of project (20%)
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
Several internal examiners

Oral exam based on report.

1 week before the re-exam a report on a three week project performed during the course is handed in.
On the re-exam date a 15 minute project presentation is given followed
by a 15 minute discussion/question period. Presentation, discussion and report determine 55% of the grade. Hand-ins, exercises and talks during the course have a weight of 45%, and there will be chances to catch up on these during the course or afterwards by contacting the course responsible.
If no three week project has been performed during the course, a new project needs to be performed.
The project is assigned after contacting the course responsible 4 weeks before the re-exam date at the latest. The project report needs to be handed in 1 week before the re-exam date at the latest.

Criteria for exam assesment

see learning outcome