Computer Science in the Majors: Physics

At this workshop, you will learn how to use Mathematica to model and visualize physical systems. We will also learn to use the popular scientific typesetting system LaTeX to format and display our results.

Nov 6, 2020, 12:30 – 1:30 AM



Key Themes


About this event

Event Information

We will use Mathematica to consider the mechanics problem of a mass in a gravitational field with air resistance. We will analyze the problem by creating a three-dimensional plot of the gravitational potential, numerically solving the equations of motion for the mass, and displaying the resulting trajectory in an animation. Using LaTeX, we will export our plots and data to create a formatted report of our results. The techniques used along the way are common in physics and will be useful for anyone pursuing a physics major.

After coming to this workshop you will be able to:

  • Use basic Mathematica commands to do arithmetic, integration, differentiation, and more
  • Create and label multi-dimensional plots in Mathematica
  • Numerically solve basic differential equations
  • Use LaTeX to generate formatted documents with plots and equations

Mathematica requires very little background in coding. 

Before you attend

Download Mathematica using an activation key from William and Mary here.

Create an account at the online LaTeX editor Overleaf here.


  • Charlie Dobson

    GDSC Lead

  • Alex Batts


  • Colleen Polka

    Vice Lead: Workshops

  • Jason LaPierre

    Vice Lead: Consulting

  • Aniedi Udo-Obong

    Regional Leader

  • Cheyenne Hwang


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