An Introduction to Physical Science,
15th Edition

James Shipman, Jerry D. Wilson, Charles A. Higgins, Bo Lou

ISBN-13: 9781337616416
Copyright 2021 | Published
800 pages | List Price: USD $178.95

Succeed in your non-science majors course with this easy-to-understand text that presents the fundamental concepts of the five divisions of physical sciences (physics, chemistry, astronomy, meteorology and geology). This updated fifteenth edition includes timely and relevant applications and a WebAssign course with a mobile-friendly ebook and active-learning modules to enhance your learning experience.


1. Measurement.
2. Motion.
3. Force and Motion.
4. Work and Energy.
5. Temperature and Heat.
6. Waves and Sound.
7. Optics and Wave Effects.
8. Electricity and Magnetism.
9. Atomic Physics.
10. Nuclear Physics.
11. The Chemical Elements.
12. Chemical Bonding.
13. Chemical Reactions.
14. Organic Chemistry.
15. Place and Time.
16. The Solar System.
17. Moons and Small Solar System Bodies.
18. The Universe.
19. The Atmosphere.
20. Atmospheric Effects.
21. Structural Geology and Plate Tectonics.
22. Minerals, Rocks, and Volcanoes.
23. Surface Processes.
24. Geologic Time.
Appendix A. The Seven Base Units of the International System of Units (SI)
Appendix B. Solving Mathematical Problems in Science.
Appendix C. Equation Rearrangement.
Appendix D. Analysis of Units.
Appendix E. Positive and Negative Numbers.
Appendix F. Powers-of-10 Notation.
Appendix G. Significant Figures.
Appendix H. Psychrometric Tables (pressure: 30 in. of Hg).
Appendix I. Seasonal Star Charts.
Answers to Confidence Exercises.
Answers to Selected Questions.

  • James Shipman

    Dr. James T. Shipman was a long-time physics educator at Ohio University, his alma mater, and was Professor Emeritus until his passing in 2009.

  • Jerry D. Wilson

    Jerry Wilson received his physics degrees from Ohio University (B.S., Ph.D.) and Union College in Schenectady, New York (M.S.). In addition to co-writing PHYSICS LABORATORY EXPERIMENTS, he is one of the original authors of the first edition of AN INTRODUCTION TO PHYSICAL SCIENCE (published in 1971) and has several other physics textbooks to his credit. Wilson is currently Emeritus Professor of Physics at Lander University in Greenwood, South Carolina, and continues to write the Curiosity Corner, a question and answer column run in five regional newspapers.

  • Charles A. Higgins

    Chuck Higgins received his B.S. degree in physics from the University of Alabama in Huntsville and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in astronomy from the University of Florida. Areas of interest and research include planetary and solar radio astronomy, as well as astronomy education and public outreach. He is currently a Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. He is a founding member of a NASA-sponsored education project called Radio JOVE, and he frequently hikes many of the great state parks in Tennessee.

  • Bo Lou

    Bo Lou received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in optical engineering from Zhejiang University, and a Ph.D. degree in physics from Emory University. Bo is currently a professor of physics at Ferris State University. He has also co-authored other college physics textbooks.

  • Timely "Physical Science Today" (PST) articles in nearly all chapters present fascinating, high-interest topics, emphasizing bio-medical and technical applications.

  • A new Digital Workbook in WebAssign includes active-learning modules, including videos, simulations, readings and experiment-based examples followed by a wide variety of questions for student response.

  • "Thinking It Through" (TIT) sections after Example questions and before Solutions focus students on the critical thinking and analysis they should undertake before working the example.

  • Chapter-opening "Did You Know?" questions orient students and introduce them to the central ideas of the chapter.

  • Chapter-opening "Facts" provide interesting and user-friendly summaries of the chapter's key concepts and topics.

  • Section-opening Key Questions help students gauge their understanding of the important topics to be covered in the section that follows.

  • "Did You Learn?" sections provide a short set of answers to the section-opening Key Questions, reinforcing the concepts students should know after completing a section.

  • Conceptual Questions throughout (often related to an everyday application) are immediately followed by the correct answer to reinforce understanding.

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.

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