• Length:
    10 Weeks
  • Effort:
    11–13 hours per week
  • Price:

    Add a Verified Certificate for $49 USD

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  • Subject:
  • Level:
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  • Course Type:
    Self-paced on your time

Associated Programs:


  • Knowledge of Classical Mechanics (at the level of 8.01x Mechanics Series) will be necessary.
  • Multivariable Calculus

About this course

Skip About this course

Electricity and Magnetism dominate much of the world around us – from the most fundamental processes in nature to cutting edge electronic devices. Electric and magnet fields arise from charged particles. Charged particles also feel forces in electric and magnetic fields. Maxwell’s equations, in addition to describing this behavior, also describe electromagnetic radiation.

In this course, we focus on Electrostatics. We examine the forces between charges, electric fields, and electric potential, looking at different ways of calculating each. We also look at dipoles and the difference between conductors and insulators. The course ends by explaining capacitors and dielectrics.

This is the firstmodule in a series of three that are based on the MIT course: 8.02, Electricity and Magnetism, a required introductory physics class for all MIT undergraduates, which is being offered as an XSeries.Please visit to learn Introductory Electricity and Magnetism XSeries Program Pagefor more information and to enroll in all three modules.

This course will require the use of calculus.

What you'll learn

Skip What you'll learn
  • How Electric Fields form and how to measure them
  • What are Dipoles
  • Gauss’s Law and why it is important
  • What is Electric Potential
  • How Conductors, Insulators, and Capacitors work

Meet your instructors

Peter Dourmashkin
Senior Lecturer, Physics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Analia Barrantes
Lecturer, Physics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Michelle Tomasik
Lecturer, Physics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Robert Redwine
Professor of Physics and Director of Bates Linear Accelerator Center
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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