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PHYS 412 Introductory Quantum Mechanics

Location:  MP-301       Time:  MWF 3:40 – 4:30pm
Prerequisites:  Required physics courses.

Required Preparation (PHYS 309): Mastery of Chapters 5 & 7 of Krane
Recommended Preparation: Study Appendix on Linear Algebra in Griffiths

Text: Introduction to Quantum Mechanics by David J. Griffiths, 2nd edition
• * Corrections to first edition, August 10, 2000
• * Corrections to first printing of the second edition, September 1, 2004
• * Corrections to third printing of the second edition, February 26, 2006
• * Corrections to fifth printing of the second edition, October 4, 2007.
Instructor:  Dr. Hanna     (208) 426-3775     MP-423
Office Hours:  MWF 4:30-5:30pm (in MP-301, after class), or by appointment

WeekMon dateTopics
Part 1:    Wave Function and Schrödinger Equation
(Exam 1 over Chapters 1 and 2 on Wed Feb 25)
1.1/19(Holiday);  Wave Function;  Momentum and Uncertainty Principle
reading:  (No Class); 1.1-1.4 (1-14);  1.5,1.6 (15-20)
H1 due 1/26:   1.1, 1.3, 1.5, 1.7, 1.9
2.1/26Stationary States;  Infinite Square Well
reading:  2.1 (24-29);  2.2a (30-35);  2.2b (35-38)
H2 due 2/2:   1.14, 2.4, 2.5, 2.7, 2.38
3.2/2Harmonic Oscillator
reading:  2.3.0,2.3.1 (40-44);  2.3.1 (44-48);  2.3.2 (48-57)
H3 due 2/9:   2.10, 2.11, 2.12, 2.13, 2.15
4.2/9Free Particle;  Bound States
reading:  2.4a (59-63);  2.4b (64-66);  2.5.1,2.5.2a (68-73)
H4 due 2/18:  2.19, 2.21, 2.22, 2.23, 2.24, 2.26
5.2/16(Holiday);  Scattering States;  Finite Square Well
reading:  (No Class);  2.5.2b (73-76);  2.6 (78-82)
H5 due 2/23:  2.29, 2.34, 2.35, 2.42, 2.46
6.2/23Review;  EXAM 1 (Wed Feb 25);  Hilbert Space
reading:  (Review Chapters 1 & 2);  (Exam 1);  3.1,3.2.1 (93-98)
H6 due 3/2:  2.48, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.4, 3.5
Part 2:    Hilbert-Space Formalism and Angular Momentum
(Exam 2 over Chapters 3 and 4 on Fri Apr 10)
7.3/2Observables;  Statistical Interpretation;  Uncertainty Relations
reading: 3.2.2,3.3 (98-105);  3.4 (106-109);  3.5 (110-118)
H7 due 3/9:  3.7, 3.10, 3.12, 3.13, 3.14, 3.17
8.3/9Dirac Notation;  Central Potential;  Angular and Radial Equations
reading: 3.6 (118-123);  4.1.0,4.1.1 (131-134);  4.1.2,4.1.3 (135-144)
H8 due 3/16:  3.23, 3.24, 3.38, 4.1, 4.2, 4.4
9.3/16Hydrogen Atom;  Angular Momentum
reading: 4.2 (145-158);  4.3.0,4.3.1 (160-166);  4.3.2 (167-169)
H9 due 3/30:  4.13, 4.18, 4.19, 4.21, 4.22

3/23 - 3/27


10.3/30Spin;  Spin 1/2;  Electron in a Magnetic Field
reading:  4.4.0,4.4.1 (171-174);  4.4.1 (175-179);  4.4.2 (179-183)
H10 due 4/6:  4.27, 4.28, 4,29, 4.30, 4.33
11.4/6Addition of Angular Momentum;  Review;  EXAM 2 (Fri Apr 10)
reading:  4.4.3 (184-189);  (Review Chapters 3 & 4);  (Exam 2)
H11 due 4/15: 4.24, 4.34, 4.35, 4.49
Part 3:    Selected Applications
(Exam 3 over Chapters 5-8 and 10 on Wed May 13)
12.4/13Bosons & Fermions;  Exchange Forces;  Atoms
reading: 5.1.0,5.1.1 (201-206);  5.1.2 (207-210);  5.2 (210-217)
H12 due 4/20:  5.4, 5.5, 5.6, 5.7, 5.12
13.4/20Free Electrons;  Band Structure;  First-Order Perturbation Theory
reading:  5.3.0,5.3.1 (218-223);  5.3.2 (224-229);  6.1.1,6.1.2 (249-254)
H13 due 4/27:  5.16, 5.17, 5.18, 6.1, 6.2, 6.3
14.4/27Degenerate Perturbation Theory;  Variational Principle;  WKB Approximation
reading:  6.1.3,6.2.1 (255-260);  7.1 (293-298);  8.0,8.1 (315-319)
H14 due 5/4:  6.4, 6.7, 7.1, 7.3, 7.13
15.5/4WKB Tunneling;  Adiabatic Processes;  Review
reading:  8.2 (320-324);  10.1.1 (368-370);  (Review Chapters 5-8 and 10)
H15 due 5/13:  8.1, 8.3
16.5/13EXAM 3 (Wed May 13, 3:30-5:30pm, MP-301)

GOALS: To obtain a basic understanding of the key concepts of elementary quantum mechanics, especially the use and basic applications of the Schrödinger equation in problems of pedagogical and practical importance, and to prepare students for graduate-level quantum mechanics. The course objectives will be accomplished through lecture and discussion of selected topics in class, and by students working through the assigned parts of text, including all assigned homework problems. Assessment will come from exams and assigned homework.

SYLLABUS: The syllabus describes the intended progression of the course. The syllabus and homework assignments will be revised as needed. Changes to the syllabus and the homework assignments will be posted on the course web page,, which should be checked frequently for updates.

EXAMS: 60% of your grade is based on the exams.  The exams are based on the textbook readings, the numbered examples in the text, the homework, extra-credit problems, and the class lectures. ALL EXAMS WILL BE COUNTED, AND NO MAKE-UP EXAMS WILL BE GIVEN. There will be three exams, worth 20% each.  Only simple scientific calculators allowed during exams: no calculators that are capable of graphing, integration, differentiation, or symbolic algebra are allowed.  You may bring one 8.5″ by 11″ sheet of formulas for each exam, with formulas on both sides, plus the formula sheets from your previous PHYS 412 exams. All formula sheets must be labeled at the top with your name and the exam number, be signed and handwritten by you, and be turned in with your exam. Your formula sheet should contain only numbered formulas from those sections of the chapters that are covered on the exam, and you must write the textbook equation number next to each formula. No other formulae, comments, drawing, or other information are allowed on the formula sheet. It is your responsibility to know the meaning of every symbol on your formula sheet, and to understand the meaning, applicability, and use of every equation that you include on your formula sheet.

HOMEWORK: 40% of your grade is based on the homework. Hand in what you have on the due date, at the beginning of class. NO LATE HOMEWORK ACCEPTED.  Start homework assignments early (ASAP) because they are typically challenging and time-consuming.  Homework problems will form the basis for many of the exam problems. Look over your graded homework carefully and make sure you can work and understand every assigned homework problem. You are strongly encouraged to talk to the instructor about homework problems that you do not understand.

LECTURES & ASSIGNED READINGS: Class lectures relate closely to the assigned readings in the text.  Students are expected to attend all lectures and participate actively in class.  Consult the syllabus and read the assigned pages before the material is covered in class. Carefully work through all numbered examples in the assigned reading.  As you read, write down any questions you have about the reading and the numbered examples, and ask questions in class.

EXTRA CREDIT: Extra credit problems that are an integral part of the textbook readings may be given from time to time in class. They should be handed in at the due date of the earliest upcoming homework assignment, with that homework assignment. In addition, the first person who e-mails the instructor with an accurate finding (and proposed correction) of an error in the text that has not already been listed in the Author’s Corrections (see the web links near the beginning of the syllabus) will also receive extra credit.  Note that the total possible amount of extra credit is very small, so priority should be given to exam preparation and to homework; however, the extra-credit problems may be relevant to exam questions.

ACADEMIC HONESTY: Although you are encouraged to discuss the class lectures, readings, and assignments with your classmates, all the work that you turn in must be your own. NO CHEATING OR PLAGIARISM (PRESENTING OTHER PEOPLE’S WORK AS IF IT WERE YOUR OWN) WILL BE TOLERATED, INCLUDING ANY USE OF HOMEWORK SOLUTIONS FOUND ON THE WEB. If you make use of sources besides the class lectures or textbooks, you must provide explicit written references to the sources you use. Failure to follow this rule or any others listed in the Student Code of Conduct could have drastic consequences, including (but not limited to) ejection from the course with a failing grade.

GRADING:    A- to A+ = 90 – 100,   B- to B+ = 75 – 90,   C- to C+ = 60 – 75,   D- to D+ = 45 – 60