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Frequently Asked Questions

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

Pandemic Specific Questions

What do I do if I receive "Course Capacity is Full"? (ODTÜ only)

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

How do you conduct the course in 2021-2022 FALL? (ODTÜ only)

Online. Check the course list in the Physics Department's web page.

Is there any change in lecture hours? (ODTÜ only)

Yes. The 1 + 2 lectures are merged into 3 hours single lecture block starting at official lecture hour on Wednesday. Check course's schedule in ODTUCLASS.

What about exams? How do you plan to conduct them? (ODTÜ only)

  • All exams are unattended. But it does not give you the right to cheat; remember the code of conduct you accepted when you registered to the university!

  • The time and number of questions are shortened.

  • The style of questions changes but the type of exam is "Quiz".

  • You cannot go back in the questions tree. Therefore, you have to answer while the question is displayed.

  • Only one attempt is allowed during the exam period.

  • There is a "Dummy Exam" for you to try in the official course page. This simulates the behavior of the exam so that you don't make mistakes during the exam.

I am having problems with attendance via Zoom sessions? (ODTÜ only)

  • Zoom sessions of lectures require you to login via a user account (i.e. an e-mail address).

  • There is no restriction on which account you register but your official user account is preferred.

  • Therefore attendance will be counted/calculated with the duration of your session.

  • You have to be signing-in with a single user account that will easily identify your student account (e.g but not

  • If you are disconnected then sign-in back with the same e-mail address; it would be very difficult for me to trace variations of accounts over the whole class.

  • Grading: Total duration of all lectures conducted along with 14 weeks will be calculated. If your signed-in duration (i.e attendance) is greater or equal to 85% of this total duration you will be given 10 points.

Course Details

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

No. Section 2 in SPRING semester is for 2nd 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".

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

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 (zoom links, 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, you could follow the zoom recordings when I add you as a guest student.

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.


  • 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.

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.

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).

Thus, 14 weeks x 3 hours equals to 10 points ... period:

  • You collect 10 points by attending; I will be attending all.

  • You create your own limit; I won't.

In clear Turkish: "yoklamayı öğrenci izler ve 10 puanı toplar; hocanın bu puanda katkısı ya da sınırlaması yoktur".

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!


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.

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

  • 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 which has to be uploaded using the query form.

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

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.

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