66600 - Physics and Statistics

Academic Year 2021/2022

  • Docente: Claudia Sala
  • Credits: 8
  • SSD: FIS/07
  • Language: Italian
  • Moduli: Claudia Sala (Modulo 1) Marco Garbini (Modulo 2) Marco Garbini (Modulo 3)
  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures (Modulo 1) Traditional lectures (Modulo 2) Traditional lectures (Modulo 3)
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: First cycle degree programme (L) in Biotechnology (cod. 8005)

Learning outcomes

The student will acquire fundamental knowledge of classical Physics, specifically about mechanics, energy, electromagnetic phenomena, fluids and optics. The student will learn the basis of the error theory, the main distributions used in Physics and Biology and the main methods for the statistical analysis (hypothesis test, correlation, linear interpolation). In particular, the student is able to: interpret the result of experimental measurements; estimate the main statistical parameters of a set of experimental data; understand the outcome of statistical tests applied to experimental data, or methods of interpolation and/or correlation between random variables.

Course contents


  • Physical quantities
  • Units of measurement
  • Kinematics
  • Forces and dynamics
  • Circular motion and centrifuge
  • Energy
  • Levers and joints
  • Physics of fluids: laws of fluids statics and dynamics. Ideal and real fluids.
  • Electromagnetism.
  • Elements of thermodynamics
  • Electromagnetic spectrum. Ionazing and non ionizing radiation
  • Optics and waves.



  • Errors and measurements
  • Errors propagation
  • Random variables
  • Probability distributions
  • Estimate of the parameters of a probability distribution
  • Central limit theorem
  • Hypothesis tests. Student's t-test
  • Correlation and covariance
  • Computational lab and analysis of biological data


Lectures slides will be available online.


D.C. GIANCOLI – FISICA: Con Fisica Moderna - Terza Edizione. Casa Editrice Ambrosiana

D. HALLIDAY, R. RESNICK, J. WALKER, Fondamenti di Fisica, Casa Editrice Ambrosiana

Esercizi di Fisica
G. RUFFO, Problemi di Fisica, Vol. 1 e 3, ZANICHELLI, Bologna.


Dispense del corso e compiti precedenti corretti sono disponibili online

Teoria degli errori: Introduzione all'analisi degli errori (Taylor, Zanichelli)

Probabilità e statistica: Metodi statistici per la sperimentazione biologica (Camussi et Al., Zanichelli)

Teaching methods

PHYSICS: Frontal lectures and exercises.

STATISTICS: Frontal lectures and computational laboratory.


As concerns the teaching methods of this course unit, all students must attend Module 1, 2 on Health and Safety online:


Assessment methods

Final exam (written test for Physics and Statistics and oral exam for Physics)

The Physics test (45 minutes) will be composed of 5 exercises and 10 theoretical questions. Each exercise will weight 3 points if answered correctly. Each theoretical question will weight 1,5 points if answered correctly. The Statistics test will be composed of 3 exercises, that will weight 8, 10, and 12 points, if answered correctly. If the final score is at least 18, the test is passed. The score of the Statistics test, if greater or equal to 18, corresponds to the final grade of the Statistics module. The score of the Physics test, if greater or equal to 18, allows access to the oral exam. Each test has to be performed in maximum 40 minutes.

The grades of the Physics and Statistics moduels will be averaged (weighted average based on CFU) to obtain the final grade.

Use of calculators will be allowed during the written tests (their use is actually recommended), but not of notes or books. Cellphones do not count as calculators.



Teaching tools

Frontal lectures with Slides. Computational laboratory for Statistics.

Office hours

See the website of Claudia Sala

See the website of Marco Garbini

See the website of Marco Garbini


Good health and well-being

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.