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Science SPORE Prize
November 2011

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The Open Source Physics Project is supported by NSF DUE-0442581.

Computational Resources for Teaching

The OSP Collection provides curriculum resources that engage students in physics, computation, and computer modeling. Computational physics and computer modeling provide students with new ways to understand, describe, explain, and predict physical phenomena. Browse the OSP simulations or learn more about our tools and curriculum pieces below.


The Tracker tool extends traditional video analysis by enabling users to create particle models based on Newton's laws. Because models synchronize with and draw themselves right on videos of real-world objects, students can test models experimentally by direct visual inspection.

Learn more about Tracker

Featured Tracker Package

Featured OSP Resource

Coupled Compass Oscillations Video Analysis Activity
The Coupled Compass Oscillations Video Analysis Activity explores the behavior of a pair of loosely coupled compass needles in air with weak damping. The needles are far enough apart that the magnetic interaction between their magnetic dipoles is much weaker than their interaction with the Earth's magnetic field. The resulting motion displays beats--when one compass is momentarily at rest, the other oscillates with maximum amplitude.

Curriculum Packages

OSP curriculum packages combine computer simulations with tutorial materials and student worksheets. Packages can be modified to meet the needs of faculty and students

Browse curriculum resources by topic and learn how to customize packages

Featured Curriculum Package

Featured OSP Resource

An Introduction to Computer Simulation Methods (EJS Adaptation)
The Easy Java Simulations adaptation of an An Introduction to Computer Simulation Methods by Harvey Gould, Jan Tobochnik, and Wolfgang Christian teaches physics modeling by example. We have chosen EJS for this edition of our book because its dynamic and highly interactive user interface greatly reduces the amount of programming required to implement an idea.

EJS Modeling

Student modeling, the guided exploration of physical systems and concepts, is a powerful approach to engaged learning. Easy Java Simulations provides the computational tools for students and faculty to explore physics without the need for learning details of java programming.

Learn more about EJS

Featured EJS Model

Featured OSP Resource

Platform on Two Rotating Cylinders Model
The Ejs Platform on Two Rotating Cylinders model displays the model of a platform resting on two equal cylinders are rotating with opposite angular velocities.  There is kinetic friction between each cylinder and the platform.    The separation between the cylinders and the coefficient of kinetic friction can be changed via textboxes.


Open Source Physics provides extensive resources for computational physics and physics simulations. Included are:

  • An Eclipse environment for OSP
  • OSP Source Code Libraries
  • OSP best practices
  • Documentation

Access programming resources


OSP provides several general applications for physics teaching, student activities, and curriculum distribution. These are:

OSP Events

Adopt and Adapt Simulations for Tablet-based Teaching
North Carolina Section of AAPT
UNC Pembroke
November 6-7

Project Based Learning for Introductory Physics
ATE Project for Physics Faculty
November 13-15, 2014

Incorporating Computation and Modeling into Physics and Astronomy Teaching
Workshop for New Faculty
ACP, College Park, MD
Nov 14-16, 2014

Supporting Education with Online Computational Physics Resources
International Science Education Conference 2014
Singapore, 25-27 November 2014

Astronomy and Physics Simulations for Computers and Tablets
AAPT 2015 Winter Meeting
San Diego, CA
January 3-6, 2015

More events

Latest OSP Materials

Oct 26 Gas-Liquid Coexistence by Gibbs Ensemble Model
Oct 21 Data Fitting JS Model
Oct 8 Physlet Two-Dimensional Kinematics Illustrations Package
Oct 8 DNA Restriction Mapping Model

Recent Library Material Comments

Oct 27 - 5:33 AM EST
Eran Grinvald posted How acceleration… to the Tracker Video Analysis… thread.

Recent Discussions

Oct 31 - 4:43 PM EST
Francisco… posted Re: Subscripts and… to the subscripts and… thread.

Oct 29 - 6:33 PM EST
Douglas Brown posted Re: Re: Re:… to the Smoothing… thread.

Oct 29 - 3:35 PM EST
Francisco… posted Re: Import data to… to the Import data to EJS thread.

Oct 29 - 2:52 PM EST
Mauricio… posted Re: Xuggle not… to the Tracker in Mac OSX… thread.

Oct 28 - 8:19 AM EST
Mariusz Krasinski posted Nasty graps (plots) to the Nasty graphs (plots) thread.

The OSP Network:
Open Source Physics - Tracker - EJS Modeling
Physlet Physics
Physlet Quantum Physics