General Information about Physics 7701
- Course title:
- Analytic and Numeric Methods of Physics
- Course Text:
- The official (but not required) text for the first part of the course is
Mathematics by Kevin Cahill. This is a newly published book (in April 2013) that has
been available in online form for some time. It has many interesting examples and additional
topics that are not found in other math methods texts (unfortunately we won't have
time to cover them).
The second part of the course will actually be the start of
electromagnetism, so you'll need a graduate E/M text that you can use next semester
(Note: 7401 will also not have an official text, but any one of the standard graduate
E/M texts will work: e.g., Jackson, Garg, Zangwill, or Ohanion.)
- Supplementary Texts:
- The official text from last year is
Mathematical Methods for Physicists, Sixth Edition: A Comprehensive Guide by George Arfken and Hans Weber.
There is an e-book version available from the library
This book is commonly used in graduate math methods courses but the organization
of topics is better for a reference than a textbook.
(Note: there is now a seventh edition, but we'll reference the 6th edition,
which is the e-book version and more cheaply available used.)
A more pedagogical text that we used last year as a guide to
many of the topics and the order in which we covered them is
Mathematics for Physicists by Susan Lea.
Errata for this book can be found
Another excellent book often used for undergraduate courses but
still suitable for a graduate course is
Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences by Mary Boas. The Amazon reviews for this text
are very good.
There are many other useful math methods reference at both the
undergraduate and graduate level; some are listed on the 7701
There are no definite prerequisites, other than having taken
a standard set of undergraduate courses in physics
(e.g., an electromagnetism course at the level of Griffiths).
You are expected to have
encountered various mathematical tools in your undergraduate
studies, such as the basics of linear algebra, vector calculus,
complex numbers (but not complex analysis), and differential
equations. You will have an opportunity to review these topics
(or catch up on what you might have missed) as we build on them in 7701.
Please talk to Prof. Furnstahl if you're concerned about
- The focus will be on
the methods needed for the core courses, with particular
emphasis on being prepared for Electromagnetic
Field Theory, but many of these topics will appear in other
We will also discuss numerical methods and how to calculate
in Mathematica as we proceed.
Topics to be covered include aspects of
Fourier series and transforms,
complex variables, differential equations (and Sturm-Liouville theory
in particular), vector analysis,
and generalized, special,
and Green's functions.
Given the time constraints and the broad topic, we will be selective in
The second part of the course will correspond to material in the first
three chapters of Jackson's Classical Electrodynamics (or the first
three chapters of Ohanian's book of the same name).
This is mostly math methods still, with many overlaps to the topics
already listed, but in the context of electromagnetism.
- Prof. Richard (Dick) Furnstahl
office: M2048 PRB
phone: 292-4830 (office) or 847-4026 (home)
- Russell Colburn
office: M2060 PRB
phone: 292-1648 (office)
- Chris Ehemann
office: 2023 PRB
phone: 247-7934 (office)
- Class meets MWF from 10:20-11:15am in Smith Lab 1138.
Make-up classes and optional supplementary classes
will be scheduled as we go. The midterms will be
Tuesday, September 24 in the evening
and Wednesday, November 6 in the evening.
The final exam day and time
is fixed by the University to be Thursday, December 5 from 10:00-11:45am.
- Office Hours:
- By appointment (send email or ask in class) and . . .
[to be announced] (Furnstahl)
- Assigned problems [25%]
- Two midterm exams [50%]
- Final exam [25%]
- Other Items:
- If you have a disability that warrants special consideration for
examinations, please contact Prof. Furnstahl as soon as possible
to make appropriate arrangements. For more information, the website
for the Office of Disability Services is
- The university policy
http://studentaffairs.osu.edu/resource_csc.asp on academic misconduct will be followed.
You may (and should)
discuss homework problems with other students, with Prof. Furnstahl
or other faculty,
and/or with the grader.
However, you must hand in your own version of each homework
- Web Pages:
- This info:
- Course home page:
Your comments and
suggestions are appreciated.
[Math and Physical Sciences]
[Ohio State University]
Physics 7701 Course Information.
Last modified: 07:08 am, October 31, 2013.