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Mathematical Methods of Physics I
PHYS 6124     Fall semester 2010

Course schedule
Place and times
Howey S106, TT 1:35-2:55pm
Predrag Cvitanović
Office: Howey W501 (office hours: Tuesday 3-4pm)
Phone: (404) IT STINX
E-mail: predrag dot cvitanovic snail physics dot gatech dot edu
Xunchi Chen
Office: B-22A Boggs building (office hours: Wednesday 12:30 to 2:30)
Phone: 404-385-8642
E-mail: xcchen snail gatech dot edu
Course description
The course provides an overview of complex variables, matrix theory, perturbation theory, integral transformations, ordinary and partial differential equations with applications to various physics problems.
Discussion site (experimental)
suggestions by students and faculty (feel free to add your comments at any time).
G. B. Arfken and H. J. Weber, Mathematical Methods for Physicists, 6th Edition: A Comprehensive Guide (Academic Press, San Diego 2005), ISBN: 9780120598762. Click here to find online retailers who sell the book. New books can be purchased at the Barnes and Noble or the Engineer's bookstore on Marietta street. This is the cover of the current edition; if your cover looks like this, you got the previous edition, with all problems renumbered. Tough luck.
Other resources
M. Stone and P. Goldbart, Mathematics for Physics (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2004), offers a very engaging, physics focused approach. A pre-publication draft can be found here.
Roger Penrose, The Road to Reality : A Complete Guide to the Laws of the Universe (Knopf 2005), is an amazing and wonderfully engaging attempt to teach you the meaning of all mathematical methods you will ever need.
M. Tinkham, Group Theory and Quantum Mechanics (McGraw-Hill, NY 1964) - nice book, worth owning.
I have to skip next lecture? Dog ate my homework?  What help aids can I take along?  How much programming needed?  Should I submit my code along with the computational exercises? 
Teaching method
Two lectures and a homework problem set per week.
Homework assignments will be posted on the web every Thursday and will be due next Thursday in class. You can discuss problems with each other, but the solutions have to be executed and submitted individually. All students are expected to comply with the academic honor code. There will be no exams, your performance (pass/fail) will be assessed based on the homeworks, so day-to-day participation is very important.
Tuesday Aug 24 2010, 1:35 in Howey S106