Introduction to Biological Physics for the Health and Life Sciences
Physics is central to an understanding of biomedical science. We are aware that many students studying for a career in biomedicine are not primarily motivated by physics; they are interested in other areas of science. We are also aware that no currently available first-year textbook takes the physics needs of health-science students seriously. In this textbook we have several goals. Firstly, we are trying to present the necessary base concepts of physics as clearly as possible. Secondly, the textbook is designed to remove any unnecessary conceptual load from students by removing all physics that is not absolutely necessary for health-science students. The decision as to which parts of physics are necessary has been determined in close collaboration with the physicists and teachers of the Department of Physics and the professional clinicians and academics in the Faculty of Health Science at the University of Otago. Thirdly, we are keenly aware that student motivation is always an issue in the study of physics for the health sciences. We have tried to add as many applications to the biomedical sciences as possible to the text in an attempt to aid this motivation. The companion website for this book is available at www.wiley.com/go/biological_physics.
The production of a textbook is an enormous task and this textbook is no exception. In writing this book, we have relied on the expertise and goodwill of a large group of academic colleagues. We would like to express our gratitude to Mr Gordon Sanderson of the Ophthalmology Department and Professor Terence Doyle of the Radiology Department in theUniversity ofOtagoMedical School. We would like to thankDai Redshaw for the many hours he has spent reading through the text and working through the problem sets and Dr Phil Sheard from the Department of Physiology for his inspiring review lectures on bioelectricity. We would particularly like to thank Dr Don Warrington for his diligent and careful reading of the entire manuscript, and for his many corrections and suggestions. Finally we would like to thank the staff of the Department of Physics at Otago for the time and support that they have rendered over the past years. While the staff of the Department of Physics are listed as authors of this textbook we would particularly like to thank Gerry Carrington, Pat Langhorne, Craig Rodger, Rob Ballagh, Neil Thomson and Bob Lloyd.
Finally, the goal of this textbook is to provide for the needs of our students. In order to achieve this goal, we have depended on the feedback provided by our students. There will of course still be errors which have escaped our editing process, and for these we apologise in advance, and we welcome feedback from our readers.
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