Ch 26: Praxis General Science: Optics & Waves

About This Chapter

Study the lessons of this chapter to prepare for questions on the Praxis General Science exam regarding the properties of waves, sound waves and electromagnetic waves.

Praxis General Science: Optics & Waves - Chapter Summary

As you prepare for the Praxis General Science exam, use these lessons to reinforce your understanding of waves, sound waves and electromagnetic waves. Each lesson video is taught by one of our professional instructors. They're also available to answer any questions you may have so that you can effectively master the material presented in this chapter about:

  • Wavelengths, amplitudes, periods, frequency and speed
  • Transverse and longitudinal waves
  • Volume and pitch
  • Sound waves and the factors that affect the properties of sound
  • The seven major regions of the electromagnetic spectrum
  • Color frequencies and the color spectrum
  • Reflections, resonance and other ways waves can be altered
  • Properties of transparent and opaque materials
  • Constructive interference and the Doppler effect
  • Wave-particle duality

In addition to these lesson videos, this chapter includes a series of lesson transcripts and quizzes. The transcripts are written overviews of lessons that allow for an additional review of the material and include highlighted keywords. The quizzes will assess how much of the information you understood.

14 Lessons in Chapter 26: Praxis General Science: Optics & Waves
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Wave Parameters: Wavelength, Amplitude, Period, Frequency & Speed

1. Wave Parameters: Wavelength, Amplitude, Period, Frequency & Speed

How do we measure and describe waves? How do waves differ based upon their shapes? This lesson will guide you through the five wave parameters - period, frequency, amplitude, wavelength, and speed - that we use to characterize waves.

Transverse & Longitudinal Waves: Definition & Examples

2. Transverse & Longitudinal Waves: Definition & Examples

What comes to mind when you think of a wave? Chances are your mental image takes the form of a transverse wave. But, longitudinal waves are just as important, and understanding the difference is vital to learning about waves. In this lesson, explore both types of waves and the unique characteristics of each.

What is Sound? - Definition and Factors Affecting the Speed of Sound

3. What is Sound? - Definition and Factors Affecting the Speed of Sound

Explore the minute workings of sound waves and how they travel. We'll discuss the main factors that affect the speed of sound waves, and we'll try some mathematical problems involving the wave equation.

Pitch and Volume in Sound Waves

4. Pitch and Volume in Sound Waves

What do pitch and volume mean when talking about sound waves? Further your understanding of sound waves in this lesson as we explore the more familiar aspects of sound. We'll learn about pitch and volume and how they relate to sound wave parameters.

The 7 Major Regions of the Electromagnetic Spectrum

5. The 7 Major Regions of the Electromagnetic Spectrum

This lesson will walk you through each of the major regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Explore the unique characteristics of X-rays, microwaves, radio waves, UV rays, infrared, gamma rays, and of course, visible light.

The Nature of Light: Origin, Spectrum & Color Frequency

6. The Nature of Light: Origin, Spectrum & Color Frequency

This lesson introduces the basics of visible light and color. Learn how the visible light spectrum is divided into the six color ranges. We'll also discuss why different people name colors in different ways.

Reflection: Angle of Incidence, Curved Surfaces & Diffusion

7. Reflection: Angle of Incidence, Curved Surfaces & Diffusion

How does light bounce off surfaces? Learn the differences between how light bounces off flat surfaces, curved surfaces, and non-shiny surfaces. Then reflect on your reflection knowledge with a quiz.

Resonance: Definition & Transmission of Waves

8. Resonance: Definition & Transmission of Waves

This lesson describes how sound and light waves are affected by the principle of resonance. Learn how resonance occurs through the vibrations and resonant frequencies of objects. You'll investigate everyday examples of resonance and learn how to break a wine glass with your voice!

Transparent and Opaque Materials in Electromagnetic Waves

9. Transparent and Opaque Materials in Electromagnetic Waves

What makes an object transparent or opaque? How does light pass through some objects and not others? And what about the other types of electromagnetic waves? We'll investigate all these questions in this lesson about the transparency and opacity of materials.

Color: White Light, Reflection & Absorption

10. Color: White Light, Reflection & Absorption

What gives color to objects? How do light waves interact with materials to produce red and green or white and black? In this lesson, learn how white light is composed of all colors and how absorption and reflection influence our color perception.

Refraction, Dispersion & Diffraction

11. Refraction, Dispersion & Diffraction

Learn about light waves and how they can be affected by objects. Explore the difference between refraction, dispersion, and diffraction. Take the quiz to see how much you can remember.

Constructive and Destructive Interference

12. Constructive and Destructive Interference

What happens when one wave meets another? Do the waves converge to make one giant wave? Or, do they destroy each other? In this lesson, we'll explore the workings of wave interference.

The Doppler Effect: Definition, Examples & Applications

13. The Doppler Effect: Definition, Examples & Applications

What is the Doppler effect? How does it affect our perceptions of sound and light? In this lesson, learn how traveling wave sources can change the way we observe sound and light waves. Explore the applications of the Doppler effect on shock waves, sonic booms, and the movements of distant galaxies.

Wave-Particle Duality: Concept, Explanation & Examples

14. Wave-Particle Duality: Concept, Explanation & Examples

Is light a particle with mass and substance? Or, is it just a wave traveling through space? Most scientists say light is both a particle and a wave! Find out how they came to this strange conclusion as we learn about the theory of wave-particle duality.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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