What is Lecture: Definition and 169 Discussions

A lecture (from the French lecture, meaning reading) is an oral presentation intended to present information or teach people about a particular subject, for example by a university or college teacher. Lectures are used to convey critical information, history, background, theories, and equations. A politician's speech, a minister's sermon, or even a business person’s sales presentation may be similar in form to a lecture. Usually the lecturer will stand at the front of the room and recite information relevant to the lecture's content.
Though lectures are much criticised as a teaching method, universities have not yet found practical alternative teaching methods for the large majority of their courses. Critics point out that lecturing is mainly a one-way method of communication that does not involve significant audience participation but relies upon passive learning. Therefore, lecturing is often contrasted to active learning. Lectures delivered by talented speakers can be highly stimulating; at the very least, lectures have survived in academia as a quick, cheap, and efficient way of introducing large numbers of students to a particular field of study.
Lectures have a significant role outside the classroom, as well. Academic and scientific awards routinely include a lecture as part of the honor, and academic conferences often center on "keynote addresses", i.e., lectures. The public lecture has a long history in the sciences and in social movements. Union halls, for instance, historically have hosted numerous free and public lectures on a wide variety of matters. Similarly, churches, community centers, libraries, museums, and other organizations have hosted lectures in furtherance of their missions or their constituents' interests. Lectures represent a continuation of oral tradition in contrast to textual communication in books and other media. Lectures may be considered a type of grey literature.

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  1. Garvett

    How do you actually take maths notes so that it’s not in vain?

    I have hit a bit of a roadblock in my undergraduate studies. Our lectures assume that we should be taking notes, and that is entirely understandable: after all, what else can you be doing during a lecture besides listening and note-taking? However, I have not the foggiest idea as to how to...
  2. K

    B Searching for Quantum Mechanics Lecture on Delayed Choice Experiment

    Hi everybody. Some years ago I came across a video on youtube where they talked about an experiment with small and large envelops, when the small ones were placed into the large ones and then it resulted in something interesting. It might have been an instance of delayed choice, but I am not...
  3. malawi_glenn

    Other Collection of Free Online Physics Books and Lecture Notes (Part 2)

    This is part 2 of my thread Collection of Free Online Math Books and Lecture Notes Here, we will consider physics and mathematical methods for physics resources. Now, this is a work in progress. Please feel free comment regarding items you want to be included, or if a link is broken etc. Note...
  4. H

    Prof. Mattuck's Lecture 20: A Divine Power of Speech & Laplace's Elegance

    Lecture 20 by Prof. Mattuck is simply great. I don’t think there can be any better communication than that, it seemed as if what was in his mind simply got teleported in to mine, and that’s why, it seems now, Aristotle gave so much importance (and almost considered it as a divine power) to the...
  5. TGV320

    Studying How many exercises should I do after each math lecture? (Calc 1/2)

    Hello, I am currently self studying MIT 18.01 in my technical college, having just finished watching the 3rd lecture. I do my best doing the assignments and pre-reading of every lecture. I find the lectures by professor Jerison to be really rich and intuitive, and I write down loads of notes...
  6. F

    B English Translation of Italian Lecture Notes: Equations & Solutions

    Hi, I am looking at some lecture notes in Italian, and I'm wondering about the correct English translation for some terms. I am afraid that in some cases the "literal" translation would sound weird. I looked online but I still have some doubts. In some cases I was not able to find a satisfactory...
  7. malawi_glenn

    Other Collection of Free Online Math Books and Lecture Notes (part 1)

    School starts soon, and I know students are looking to get their textbooks at bargain prices 🤑 Inspired by this thread I thought that I could share some of my findings of 100% legally free textbooks and lecture notes in mathematics and mathematical physics (mostly focused on geometry) (some of...
  8. P

    Video lecture demonstrations for an online class

    I'm looking for a collection of physics video demonstrations (open sourced or licensed) for an online calculus-based class at the level of Halliday, Resnick, Walker textbook, covering EM waves, optics, special relativity, intro to quantum, and so on, basically the last third of the textbook. I...
  9. MathematicalPhysicist

    A Holographic Cosmology lecture of Leonard Susskind

    In the following lectures: Prof. Susskind writes the terms ##\exp(3Ht_n)## and ##\exp(3ht_n)##. If I understand correctly he computes ##R(t)=R_0 \exp[\int^{t_n}H(t')dt']## where ##R(t)## is the scale factor of the Universe and ##H(t')## is Hubble's parameter. What I still don't understand is...
  10. S

    I Feynman's Vol 1 Lecture 26 Principle of Least Time (help with Figure)

    Hello, Just for fun - I am trying to go through The Feynman’s Lectures: Lecture #26 – Volume 1: The Principle Of Least Time. I am stuck on Figure 26-4 and specifically showing the two angles with the “double arcs” are equal. The angle of reflection BCN’ and XCF. Maybe I am just that rusty on...
  11. murshid_islam

    I Any Good Lecture Series on Complex Analysis?

    Can anyone suggest a good lecture series on Complex Analysis on YouTube? I have already searched on YouTube myself, and there are a few. But I wanted to know if any of you would recommend some particular lecture series which you consider to be good.
  12. ohwilleke

    A Record Setting Thirteen Hour Graduate Level Physics Lecture

    The Amplitudes 2020 Conference (on the physics of calculating probability amplitudes in quantum mechanics) was to be held in Michigan this year. But, this year, the conference was cancelled, for obvious reasons, and held via Zoom for Zoomplitudes 2020 instead. Physics blogger 4gravitons explains...
  13. TechieDork

    How to not sound like I'm trying to "educate" or "lecture" someone?

    Whenever I try to explain something to some people. They often remark me I'm trying to "lecture" or "educate" them (they're all dean's listers).It surprised me because I thought they would be a quite open-minded folks. I tried to fix this by keeping my ego in checks , speaking in front of mirrow...
  14. atyy

    B Free Online Lecture: Seeing the Unseeable - Capturing an Image of a Black Hole

    Seeing the Unseeable: Capturing an Image of a Black Hole A Free Science Lecture Led by Dr. Sheperd Doeleman, the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) project made history by capturing an image of the event horizon of a black hole, where gravity is so strong that even light cannot escape. You are...
  15. pinball1970

    Jim Al Kalili Darwin day lecture: written in the stars

    Darwin day lecture: written in the stars: How to live happily in a deterministic universe. University of Manchester 31.1.20 Did anyone from pf attend? Or has seen him discuss this topic? Anyone interested in this topic? Too philosophical? There is a summary on his blog here...
  16. R

    Exploring the Physics of Attraction & Repulsion: A Feynman Lecture

    "Suppose we have another ther charge some distance away. Would it feel any attraction? It would feel practically none, because if the first two are equal in size, the attraction for the one and the repulsion for the other balance out.Therefore there is very little force at any appreciable...
  17. Pispi Choudhury

    Calculus Book suggestions and good lecture notes on the calculus of variation

    I need suggestions on books and good lecture notes on calculus of variation. I've previously studied vector calculus and multivariable calculus.
  18. aiswariya

    Quantum Video lecture suggestion for Sakurai quantum mechanics Textbook

    hello! I've been trying to read through Sakurai's Modern quantum mechanics textbook ( My goal is to finish the first 3 chapters and understand the Dirac formulation of QM specifically) but I find myself stumbling at many places. Are there any video lectures on the internet that follows this text...
  19. M

    MHB Lecture Notes from Cambridge and Oxford

    Hi. There's a great collection of lecture notes on mathematics and physics form Cambridge University that is linked on reddit. https://www.reddit.com/r/math/comments/csgigv/collection_of_lecture_notes_on_mathematics_and/ It has notes on almost every topic, beginner, intermediate, and...
  20. T

    A Lecture notes on Finite Difference Methods

    I have lately been working with Numerical Analysis and I am using Finite Difference Methods for Ordinary and Partial Differential Equations by Randall J. LeVeque. It was recommended to me by a friend of mine (physicist) https://epubs.siam.org/doi/book/10.1137/1.9780898717839?mobileUi=0&...
  21. DennisN

    David Kaplan lecture on Particles and the Nature of Nothing

    I just saw this public lecture and I really enjoyed it (the lecture begins at about 18 minutes into the video). He is an engaging and rather funny speaker. At the end there is a Q&A in which he for instance goes into some of the misconceptions about quantum mechanics. David Kaplan is also one of...
  22. PainterGuy

    Online lecture about treatise on light by Huygens

    Hi, I hope that it's not wrong to ask for this kind of help in this forum. If you don't mind, could you please help me with that name which the presenter says around 46:55 in the video below? One name he says is Cassini but the other name which he says something like "Delawear" I couldn't have...
  23. astroman707

    Other What's your note taking method in physics classes?

    Upon entering my first physics class, I've noticed that taking notes is radically different than in any other class. It seems that during lecture one has two options. Option 1: Don't take very many notes at all, and instead focus on the lecture. Option 2: Take good notes, and miss what the...
  24. Abdul Quader

    A Lecture notes/Supporting notes

    Looking for recommendatuons/suggestions. Is there any lecture note series or something like that that can help studying Jackson's Electrodynamics? Thanks in advance. For instance, Prof. S. Errede's UIUC Physics 435/436 Lecture Notes helps to study Griffith's Electrodynamics...
  25. S

    Hello I am looking to find previous lecture notes

    Hello! I am student studying physics and am trying to find old lecture course notes. I'm not sure where is best place on this site to post such request. Me and 2 friends were using course notes of Leo Radzihovsky course 7240 "Advanced Statistical mechanics" from fall 2017 (Colorado University...
  26. smodak

    Quantum Found a good set of lecture notes on Quantum Mechanics

    I am not sure whether this is posted before but it looks really good to me. http://www.tcm.phy.cam.ac.uk/~bds10/aqp.html
  27. SchroedingersLion

    A Understanding Effective Mass in Crystal Potentials

    Greetings, I have come across the effective mass in my solid state physics lectures, and I have troubles understanding it. I have uploaded the part of the script (handwritten 4,5 pages) that I don't understand. At page 3, it is shown that the effective mass in the vicinity is negative. What...
  28. DoobleD

    I Inflation lecture from Guth : why does d(ρ)/dt = 0 ?

    I watched a video lecture from Alan Guth on inflation (undergrad level), and there is something in it I don't understand. He first presents the inflation scalar field, Φ, which has an energy density associated with it, V(Φ). V(Φ) is stuck at a local minimum, at Φ = 0 (what is called a "false...
  29. noir1993

    A Dyson's Formula from Tong's lecture notes

    I am studying quantum field theory from [David Tong's lecture notes][1] and I am stuck at a particular place. In Page 52., under the heading *3.1.1 Dyson's Formula*, Tong introduces an unitary operator U(t, t_0) = T \exp(-i\int_{t_0}^{t}H_I(t') dt') He then introduces the usual definition of...
  30. M

    I Can someone please explain Scott Aaronson lecture #9?

    Here is a link to a lecture by Scott Aaronson. http://www.scottaaronson.com/democritus/lec9.html About half way in the lecture he talks about the "qubit". In that section he introduces a 2x2 unitary matrix which rotates a vector by 45°. He applies that transformation to the state |0>. When he...
  31. J

    I A few questions about Feynman's QED Lecture

    Hello, Apologies if this has been asked before. After watching Feynman’s QED lectures on the probabilities of different paths that photons can take towards a photomultiplier, a few questions came up in me. Let’s take the simple scenario in which a photon emitter is faced straight towards a...
  32. Q

    I Ben Schumacher - Q. Mech. lectures from 2008. Outdated?

    Hello everyone. I am a laymen (with math knowledge) interested in learning about quantum mechanics. I came upon this video series from professor Benjamin Schumacher, which I believe is from 2008. Link...
  33. doktorwho

    Engineering Best books on solving circuits

    Hi, do you have any recommendations of books that deal with circuit analysis and circuit solving? I'm currently involved in a course that deals with linear circuits, and we are learning all of these methods of loop currents, thevenin's and norton's theorem, potential of knots and lots of methods...
  34. jedishrfu

    Interesting Lecture by RP Feynman at Cornell

    Interesting and humorous lecture by Prof RP Feynman: http://www.cornell.edu/video/richard-feynman-messenger-lecture-1-law-of-gravitation The first few minutes capture Feynman's unique character.
  35. S

    Engineering Students Academic Discussion

    Hi guys, I am doing a quick survey here. I am not sure this is appropriate in this section but here it is. If your are an engineering students, could you guys please comment on: 1) Who do you ask when you stuck on study-related questions (eg. lecture note, tutorial, assignment questions...
  36. Adgorn

    I Feynman's probability lecture -- a few questions

    I am reading lecture #6 on the first volume of "feynman's lectures on physics", and I understood quite well the first half of the lecture. However after he proved that D(rms)= √D^2= √N, I started to lose him, and so I have quite a few questions: 1) "The variation of Nh from its expected value...
  37. Muthumanimaran

    I Solve Eigenstates Doubt: Prof. Leonard Susskind's Quantum Mechanics

    I am currently reading Prof.Leonard Susskind's Lecture on Quantum Mechanics. In the Chapter: Spin in the arbitrary directions, in the subdivision Eigenstates In case $$\lambda=1$$ Prof states that measuring spin in arbitrary +n state gives me +1 as eigenvalue, what I don't understand is the next...
  38. kq6up

    I Feynman Lecture Vol III Ch. 8 Question -- Heisenberg matrix picture

    Is the Hamiltonian matrix that is constructed in Ch 8 of the Feynman lectures the Heisenberg matrix picture, or is it something else? I am just curious. Thanks, Chris Maness
  39. E

    Calculus Really need to read the textbook?

    Hello everybody, I am taking a calculus 1 course at my local community college this summer. I was wondering if it is absolutely necessary to read the textbook in math because I see it that the professor teaches the theory and techniques in lecture, and covers the same exact material. Right? What...
  40. A

    Time reversal of gravity and Richard Feynman lecture on past and future

    My question is on the assumption that there is nothing in laws of nature that says if gravity had time reversal then nothing would appear odd. The example professor Feynman gave was a system with objects rotating due to gravitational attraction that rotated in a clockwise manner with normal...
  41. kq6up

    I Help With Black Board EQ's in a P.A.M. Dirac Lecture

    My professor assigned us to watch the Dirac videos on Youtube: The video is extremely poor quality. Dirac does speak the equations as he is writing them, so I have been able to catch many of them. I am wondering if a team effort at trying to decipher these would be a worthy effort for all...
  42. RyanH42

    Geometry Vector Functions Searching Video Lecture

    Hi I am studying Differantial Geometry.My textbook is Lipschultz Differantia Geometry and I am in chapter two.I undersand the basic idea of Vector function but I wanI to gain more information.Is there any video lectures about vector functions.I found this...
  43. B

    High Resolution Upper Division Undergrad Math lecture videos

    I'm interested in watching videos of Real Analysis lectures etc. in good quality resolution. Those Harvey Mudd College lectures are valuable but annoying re video quality. Thanks. - Blue
  44. R

    Intersteller: Lecture by Kip Thorne

    It didn't seem too far off topic to let people know about the lecture Kip Thorne (Feynman professor emeritus at cal tech) just finished up about an hour ago (it's now almost 6pm here in Pasadena) at cal tech. He described the early efforts to develop the idea for the movie Interstellar and then...
  45. X

    Is it even worth going to lecture if they don't teach you?

    Most of my lectures are horrible and not worth going to. They teach squat, don't do any examples on the board, and just emphasize points that I could find in 5 minutes in the book for 1 hour. Is it even worth going to lectures if I have to sit down for 1-2 hours studying in order to solve...
  46. B

    Cosmology/QED/Astrophysics Lectures: Ideas Welcome!

    So I am going on a five hour road trip alone this weekend, and I have decided to make use of my time and listen to a few lectures on the way. I was wondering if any of you had any suggestions for lectures or talks on Cosmology/QED/Astrophysics. I thoroughly enjoyed the Neil deGrasse Tyson &...
  47. R

    How Can Teachers Effectively Plan Lessons Within a 10-Minute Lecture Framework?

    Hello Everyone ! i am Physics Teacher ... Teaching 9 - 12 grades in UAE .. when i was a student ... Teachers use to guide and deliver the lecture and then we as a student use to give exams on the basis of some our research and teacher's guidance ... now here teaching is demanding some other...
  48. G

    Giving a lecture on decimal fractions

    I'm a little empty on what to talk about. Only things that come to mind is normality (and mentioning Pi in that respect) and that 1/number's decimal expansion is only finite if its prime factors are 2 or 5. What else is there to talk about?
  49. M

    Help to supply lecture notes

    hi can anyone help me to get complete lecture notes of a many body course which is taught according the book of "many body theory of solids" by John C.Inkson, please?