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SK1117 Electromagnetism and Waves 7.5 credits

This is a fundamental course in physics. We cover electric and magnetic fields, plus wave motion in the form of acoustics and optics. The course has both theoretical and experimental parts.

Choose semester and course offering

Choose semester and course offering to see current information and more about the course, such as course syllabus, study period, and application information.


For course offering

Spring 2025 Start 17 Mar 2025 programme students

Application code


Headings with content from the Course syllabus SK1117 (Autumn 2019–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

Basic wave concept. Mechanical waves and acoustics. Sound intensity and sound intensity level.

Interference. Electricity: field strength and potential, Gauss's therorem, metals and dielectrics, capacitor, electrostatic energy. Technical applications. Electromagnetic induction. Basic wave concept.  Mechanical waves and acoustics. Electromagnetic induction. Electromagnetic waves: Generation, polarization, interference and diffraction, technical applications. The laser. Coherence. Basic geometric optics.

Intended learning outcomes

After completing the course the student should be able to:

  • solve technical problems relevant to its program related to electric and magnetic fields, mechanical and electromagnetic waves, and assess the solution's reasonableness
  • use physical measurement methods and instruments as well as report results and evaluate limitations

By "physical" is meant the part of physics that is included in the course content below.

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

Active participation in SF1625 Calculus in One Variable and SG1120 Mechanics I.

Recommended prerequisites

No information inserted


No information inserted


Young and Freedman: University Physics, Pearson (aktuell upplaga anslås på kursens hemsida senast fyra veckor innan kursstart).

Young and Freedman: University Physics, Pearson (current edition is posted on the course's homepage no later than four weeks before the course starts).

Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

A, B, C, D, E, FX, F


  • INL1 - Home tasks, 1.0 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • LAB1 - Laboratory work, 2.0 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • TENA - Exam, 4.5 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Other requirements for final grade

To pass the course, all three examination parts must be approved (INL1, LAB1, TENA).

The grade on the exam (TENA) gives the grade for the entire course.

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

No information inserted

Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination



Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course room in Canvas

Registered students find further information about the implementation of the course in the course room in Canvas. A link to the course room can be found under the tab Studies in the Personal menu at the start of the course.

Offered by

Main field of study


Education cycle

First cycle

Add-on studies

No information inserted


Anna Burvall (