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Frequently Asked Questions

Read ALL before coming to the first lecture.
Read ALL before filling the query form.

Course Details

What do I do if I receive "Course Capacity is Full"?
(b) I cannot register
to the course even it is under the capacity.

(a) To be fair to all students, the capacity is increased at random times. The limit is also random and known only by me.

(b) Starting on 2022-SPRING, you cannot add the course immediately even the capacity is not full. The system randomly allows students to be added to prevent illegal parties holding capacity slots for trade. No one (instructor, department, student affairs, system admin) can control the process and cannot make you added to the course.

If you fail to register to the course during the official registration period, start attending the course and try to add it during the add/drop period.

SECTIONS (for ODTÜ only):
Can I register to "Section 2" in SPRING semester?

No. Section 2 in SPRING semester is for 3rd year ESE students and it is a must course for them. Schedule and room is arranged according to ESE students (no extra seat exists in the room). Therefore do NOT attempt to "register section 1 and follow in section 2".

In short. If you are NOT an ESE student, you C-A-N-N-O-T register to section 2. Period.

I am from ESE department. Can I register to "Section 1" in FALL semester?

No. This course is a must course in your curriculum and it is given in your 3rd year, 2nd semester (SPRING) in Section 2.

As an ESE student, if you stay in Section 1 of FALL semester, then your final letter grade will be NA.

My department forces me to take the course as "xxx elective" type.

There is no restriction on the type of elective. We (physics department) don't enforce the type. Register with the one suits best to your department.

What happened to ASTR 201 and ASTR 202, and what is ASTR 200?

Physics Department have been offering ASTR 201 (ends at the end Solar System) and ASTR 202 (starts with the Sun and ends at Cosmology) since 1960s. This has been changed in Fall 2019: ASTR 200 is introduced which combines table of contents of both courses and simplifies the coverage to fit into a single semester.

ASTR 201 or 202 will not be offered by the department anymore. If you have taken ASTR 201 -or- 202 before, any of the course will be compatible with ASTR 200; you can also replace any of them with ASTR 200.

ODTUCLASS (for ODTÜ only):
I have just registered to the course. -or- I couldn't get the advisor approval yet.
Therefore, course is not listed in ODTUCLASS. How can I get details of the course (exam dates, essays etc).

  • Be patient. Synchronization between ODTUCLASS and SIS is not immediate. The list in the ODTUCLASS is updated each day at a very early time.

  • Advisors are not notified whether you are ready for approvals. Therefore, first inform your advisor that you are ready for approval and afterwards check ODTUCLASS every day.

  • If the course is not listed in ODTUCLASS by Wednesday noon, then inform me through the query form. In the worst case, start attending the course by coming to the class and signing the attendance list.

Course Content

I am from XYZ department. Do you think this course is OK for me?

Even though this course is based on science, it is thought conceptually with an addition of "relations in physics" (e.g energy and frequency). You won't be solving equations and getting results however, you have to know that e.g. "as the frequency increases object's energy increases". Note also that, course content is also full (in 13 weeks we will cover 17 chapters - see the schedule).

What do you mean by conceptual course?

This course has been taken by students from variety of departments. The fail rate stays almost fixed at a low percentage through the years (since 1999). A good percentage of students from non-science related departments (PHIL, ADM, SOC etc.) have taken the course as well. Therefore, there is no solid reasoning to think that "this course is only for science and engineering students".

  • If you are a student from a non-science related department, the crucial point is to grasp the content of lectures which are available online (and textbooks, other web resources etc).

  • I will cover the content related to physics conceptually (i.e. first define the terms via wording and add visual figures & tables).

  • However, I also have to use relations (i.e. energy increases with the frequency of the radiation) while explaining the concepts; otherwise you cannot have a journey to the end of the observable universe. Thus, relations will make the figures & tables more readable and understandable.

  • The exams will not contain questions having equations or you don't need to memorize numbers, names etc. However, there will be conceptual questions about the relations.


What are the facts about attendance?

If you attend ALL lectures:

  • 14 weeks x 3 hours lecturing equal to 42 hours of course load which is then equivalent to 10 points and corresponds to almost one letter grade.

However, please follow the following examples to scale your plan of not attending the lectures:

  • 1 hour of absence = 0.24 points less from your total attendance points; doesn't effect much to the letter grade.

  • Absence of 1/3 whole course load = 3.33 points less from your total attendance points; a bit less than HALF A LETTER grade.

  • Absence of 2/3 whole course load = 6.66 points less from your total attendance points; a bit higher than HALF A LETTER grade.

I signed the attendance sheet. Do I get 3 points?

Official 3 x 50 minutes lectures are divided into two long lecture hours (length depends on the content).

  • For the first 7 weeks, attendance sheet is circulated at a time close to the end of 2nd hour. Each signature is worth 3 points.

  • For the rest of the weeks (weeks 8-14), attendance sheet is circulated two times: 1) at the very beginning, 2) at a time close to the end of 2nd hour. Each signature is worth 1.5 points.

You cannot sign the attendance sheet if it is on my desk.

I have REALLY a solid reason NOT attending to one/several lectures.
What will happen to attendance points I will loose?

The point is very clear: If you miss the lecture I cannot make you attended afterwards for whatever reason you can have: (a) got sick; (b) my relatives died; (c) had to attend official/personal activity at the same time ...

Instead, first inform me, not verbally, through the query form and continue attending and show performance within the semester. Therefore, show yourself in assessment items so that when I use my discretion at the end of the term, I will have a positive rating for you.

Warning: Informing me about your absence doesn't guarantee a positive discretion. Those queries will not be replied and/or confirmed at all (read below item too).

But Hocam! My reason is stronger than you think.
You are seizing my precious letter grade points and you are causing me to get a lower grade!

OK. If you still didn't get the philosophy of the course (i.e. study-attend-interact-study-learn) then here is the math that explains "what really 10% is (or isn't)".

Folks, I am not distributing a free letter grade for anyone having a signature on the attendance sheet. You have to come and collect it. As you come to the class, you accustom yourself with the content and will probably get higher points in the exams as well. Therefore, at the end you will go higher in the class and will not be needing my discretion.

What do I do if ONE lecture hour conflicts with my schedule?

University regulation tells that you have to attend all the lecture hours. However, naturally, you might have conflicting lectures. The rules to follow are simple: Each week, you have to attend at least two of three lecture hours of the course during the semester (66.66 % of course load).

So, if you cannot attend to ONE LECTURE HOUR REGULARLY (not just single lecture) then please fill out the query form with the following information:

Lecture Hour-1: OK -or- reason / course code

Lecture Hour-2: OK -or- reason / course code

Lecture Hour-3: OK -or- reason / course code

Explanation : details

If your reason is acceptable then at the end of the semester I will handle your grading according to your other course activity.

What do I do if TWO or MORE lecture hours conflicts with my schedule?

The course load is 3 lecture hours. If you DON'T attend 2/3 or 3/3 hours you will not be able to get a good grade at the end (statistically this is valid for at least 20 years). Therefore, please DROP the course.

However, if you think that you have a very special reason NOT TO COME TO LECTURES then use the same template in the previous FAQ and describe your condition accordingly and send it via the Query Form at the end of the page.

OK. That's attendance for the whole semester. What if I cannot attend for a specific date?

It is your own schedule; you don't need to inform me about these unless it becomes continuous. Of course, I cannot mark you as attended even with the strongest reason you could ever probably have!

Is there a mandatory limitation for attendance?

University regulation is simple: Attend all lectures. However, we are all humans. My intention is also simple: As you attend the lectures you will catch up and follow the content, therefore you will be aware of universe (that is the whole reason why you are here).


What will be the content of exams?

  • Each exam will have different content (i.e. chapters). See the home page for the content.

  • All exams will contain only multiple choice questions.

  • Number of questions in each exam will be the same as the assessment of that exam (i.e. percentages).

  • (Copy from the conceptual course definition) The exams will not contain questions having equations or you don't need to memorize numbers, names etc. However, there will be conceptual questions about the relations.

How can I get a make-up exam?

Naturally, I expect all students to attend announced exam dates. If you cannot then you might take make-up exams.

  • Content of make-up exams are exactly the same as their equivalent exams.

  • You can take the make-up exam only if:

    1. You have an excuse (sickness report, death of a relative, official activity you have to attend) letter/report.

    2. Your other exam date conflicts with the announced dates which has to be confirmed by the other course's instructor (see next question).

  • After the Add/Drop period a special query form (above Announcements) will be available.

    1. Choose the exam you want to take the make-up for.

    2. Give a valid and acceptable reason for not taking the exam.

    3. Load necessary documents using the Query Form of this page.

When will be the make-up exams?

All make-up exams will be given after the Final exam, possibly on the Final exam date but at a later time.

How do I confirm my absence if I sit in other course's exam?

  • Sit for other course's exam.

  • After the exam date, bring me a letter (e-mail from institutional address is OK too) from other course's instructor with the following content:

Dear Sinan Kaan Yerli,


best wishes,



  • Then, upload the letter to the query form accordingly.

How do get a letter if I sit in YOUR exam?

  • Sit for my exam.

  • After the exam date, I will prepare a letter for the instructor of the other course with the same content shown in previous answer. I could also send an e-mail from my institutional address if it is OK for your instructor.

What do I do if both MT1 <and> MT2 conflict with other exams?

Think about it. You won't be seeing your performance until the end of 14 weeks (make-ups are given after the Final Exam). This is definitely a bad practice.

I strongly advice you DROP/WITHDRAW the course at the moment you fix your exam schedule.

Can I get a make-up exam for the FINAL?

Yes. The same procedure is applied as with the other make-up exams. Follow above instructions.


In which language(s) should we write the essays?

First of all, the key in essays is NOT the format or language, it is the content which has to be written by you only! Therefore your copy-paste will be noticed immediately whatever the language it is written.

Therefore you can write in any language that I could read.

What do I do if I miss the deadline to upload?

You are given plenty of time to work, edit and upload your essays. If you miss it, you loose the point.

However, if you miss it by minutes you can upload it using the query form within +15 minutes of the due time.

Query Form

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