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Series and Parallel Circuits


Ohm’s law describes the relationship between electric potential, current, and resistance. In this experiment, you will examine how combinations of batteries and resistors affect both the energy and the flow rate of charge in electrical circuits.


In this experiment, you will

  • Measure potential difference and current at various places in series and parallel circuits.
  • Track the energy/unit charge and the current as charge flows through batteries and resistors in series and parallel circuits.
  • Determine the relationship between potential difference and resistance in series circuits.
  • Determine the relationship between current and resistance in the branches of a parallel circuit.
  • Determine expressions for equivalent resistance for both series and parallel circuits.
  • Account for differences in bulb lighting in series and parallel circuits.

Sensors and Equipment

This experiment requires each of the following Vernier sensors and equipment (unless otherwise noted):

Additional Requirements

You may also need an interface and software for data collection. What do I need for data collection?

Download Experiment Preview

The student-version preview includes:

  • Step-by-step instructions for computer-based data collection
  • List of materials and equipment

Note: The experiment preview of the computer edition does not include essential teacher information, safety tips, or sample data. Instructions for Logger Pro and other software (such as LabQuest App or TI handheld software, where available) are on the CD that accompanies the book. We strongly recommend that you purchase the book before performing experiments.

Download Preview

Standards Correlations

No standards correlations for this experiment.

Experiment 10 from Advanced Physics with Vernier - Beyond Mechanics Lab Book

<i>Advanced Physics with Vernier - Beyond Mechanics</i> book cover

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Included in the Lab Book

Vernier lab books include a CD with word-processing files of the student instructions, essential teacher information, suggested answers, sample data and graphs, and more.

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