Quantum Mechanics: A Paradigms Approach

We have written a Quantum Mechanics textbook that reflects the way we teach the subject in our junior-year Paradigms courses and our senior-year Capstone course. The text is published by Addison-Wesley and is supported by our extensive student engagement activities. If you have any questions about material on this page or see any errors, please contact me via email . This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0618877. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

Quantum Mechanics: A Paradigms Approach
David H. McIntyre
Pearson Addison-Wesley © 2012
ISBN-10: 0-321-76579-6
ISBN-13: 978-0-321-76579-6

Instructor Resources

Table of Contents

  1. Stern-Gerlach Experiments
  2. Operators and Measurement
  3. Schrödinger Time Evolution
  4. Quantum Spookiness
  5. Quantized Energies:Particle in a Box
  6. Unbound States
  7. Angular Momentum
  8. Hydrogen Atom
  9. One-dimensional Harmonic Oscillator
  10. Time-Independent Perturbation Theory
  11. Hyperfine Structure and the Addition of Angular Momentum
  12. Perturbation of Hydrogen
  13. Identical Particles
  14. Time-Dependent Perturbation Theory
  15. Periodic Potentials
  16. Modern Applications of Quantum Mechanics
  • Appendices
  • A. Probability
  • B. Complex Numbers
  • C. Linear Algebra and Matrices
  • D. Waves and Fourier Analysis
  • E. Separation of Variables
  • F. Integrals
  • G. Physical Constants

OSU course structure

At Oregon State University, the content of this quantum text is taught in five courses as shown below. Some courses include non quantum material (shown in italics).

Junior-Year Paradigms Courses
Spin and Quantum Measurement PH 425 Waves PH 424 Central Forces PH 426 Period Systems PH 427
1. Stern-Gerlach Experiments Mechanical waves and EM waves Planetary orbits Coupled Oscillations
2. Operators and Measurement 5. Quantized Energies: Particle in a Box 7. Angular Momentum 15. Periodic Systems
3. Schrödinger Time Evolution 6. Unbound States 8. Hydrogen Atom
4. Quantum Spookiness
Senior-Year Quantum Mechanics Capstone Course PH 451
9. Harmonic Oscillator 11. Hyperfine Structure and the Addition of Angular Momentum 13. Identical Particles 16. Modern Applications
10. Perturbation Theory 12. Perturbation of Hydrogen 14. Time-Dependent Perturbation Theory

Weekly Curriculum for Semesters or Quarters

For a traditional curriculum, the content of this text would cover a full-year course, either two semesters or three quarters. A proposed weekly outline for two 15-week semesters or three 10-week quarters is shown below.

Week Chapter Topics
1 1 Stern-Gerlach experiment, Quantum State Vectors, Bra-ket notation
2 1 Matrix notation, General Quantum Systems
3 2 Operators, Measurement, Commuting Observables
4 2 Uncertainty Principle, S2 Operator, Spin-1 System
5 3 Schrödinger Equation, Time Evolution
6 3 Spin Precession, Neutrino Oscillations, Magnetic Resonance
7 4 EPR Paradox, Bell's Inequalities, Schrödinger's Cat
8 5 Energy Eigenvalue Equation, Wave Function
9 5 One-Dimensional Potentials, Finite Well, Infinite Well
10 6 Free Particle, Wave Packets, Momentum Space
11 6 Uncertainty Principle, Barriers
12 7 Three-Dimensional Energy Eigenvalue Equation, Separation of Variables
13 7 Angular Momentum, Motion on a Ring and Sphere, Spherical Harmonics
14 8 Hydrogen Atom, Radial Equation, Energy Eigenvalues
15 8 Hydrogen Wave Functions, Spectroscopy
16 9 1-D Harmonic Oscillator, Operator Approach, Energy Spectrum
17 9 Harmonic Oscillator Wave Functions, Matrix Representation
18 9 Momentum Space Wave Functions, Time Dependence, Molecular Vibrations
19 10 Time-Independent Perturbation Theory: Nondegenerate, Degenerate
20 10 Perturbation Examples: Harmonic Oscillator, Stark Effect in Hydrogen
21 11 Hyperfine Structure, Coupled Basis
22 11 Addition of Angular Momentum, Clebsch-Gordan Coefficients
23 12 Hydrogen Atom: Fine Structure, Spin-Orbit, Zeeman Effect
24 13 Identical Particles, Symmetrization, Helium Atom
25 14 Time-Dependent Perturbation Theory, Harmonic Perturbation
26 14 Radiation, Selection Rules
27 15 Periodic Potentials, Bloch's Theorem
28 15 Dispersion Relation, Density of States, Semiconductors
29 16 Modern Applications of Quantum Mechanics, Laser Cooling and Trapping
30 16 Quantum Information Processing

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