The physics of life

Course Dates: 12/05/24
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: Keeley Street
Find out why physics is the science upon which everything depends. In this course we will use basic physics concepts to understand the biological processes in living organisms, including the relatively new field of quantum biology.
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Full fee £59.00 Senior fee £47.00 Concession £38.00

Course Code: HS168

Sun, day, 12 May - 12 May '24

Duration: 1 session

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What is the course about?

Physics is the fundamental science upon which everything else depends on. In this course we will use basic physics concepts to understand the biological processes in living organisms such as how the nervous system works, how cells generate energy and how our anatomy helps us move around on Earth. We will also discuss the latest results and theories for certain biological processes that could be explained by quantum physics.

Dr Radmila Topalovic is Astronomy Education Officer at the Royal Observatory Greenwich where she has taught astronomy. Her PhD research focused on searching for large organic molecules in various nebulae . She has written articles for The Guardian Starwatch column and The Mercury Night Sky column and has worked on Galaxy. She is a co-author of Stargazing: A beginner's guide to astronomy, published by Harper Collins.

What will we cover?

• Electricity and cells
• Forces in the body
• Light and the eye
• Physics in medicine
• Quantum Biology.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

• Explain how electricity works and how the electrostatic force is used in cells
• Describe the concept of a force and different types of force in the body
• State what light consists of, list different types of light and how animals detect it
• Outline some of the latest theories to explain biological processes using quantum physics.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

No previous knowledge is required. However an enthusiasm for learning and an open and critical mind will enhance your enjoyment and benefit from this course.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

Interactive lecture - all information will be supplied via Powerpoint slides which will be made available for download. Be prepared to contribute to class discussion and group work.

Recommended reading list:
AQA GCSE Physics Lawrie Ryan & Jim Breithaupt
OCR Gateway GCSE Physics Student Book Graham Bone & Jim Newall
OCR Gateway GCSE Biology Jo Locke
Wonders of Life Brian Cox and Andrew Cohen
Life in the Universe Lewis Dartnell
Quantum: A Guide for the Perplexed Jim Al-Khalili
Life on the Edge: The Coming of Age of Quantum Biology Jim Al-Khalili and Johnjoe McFadden.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

There are no other costs but you will require a notepad and pen if you wish to take notes.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

HS181 Physics of time on 17/06 & 24/06/23
HS293 Astrophysics: an introduction on 25/06/23.

Radmila Topalovic

Rad heads up Science & Engineering at Kaplan International College in London Bridge, having spent more than seven years at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich developing and delivering world-class education programmes. She holds a degree in Physics with Astrophysics and a PhD in Astrochemistry, and has taught physics, maths and astronomy for almost ten years. Her biggest passions are quantum physics and astrobiology.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.