Teaching

The following courses have been offered at Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Missouri.


Topological Phenomena in Condensed Matter (8101)

The course will provide an introduction to the rapidly growing field of topological physics in condensed matter systems. It is aimed at the beginning graduate or advanced undergraduate student who wants to enter quickly the research fields which involve robust quantum states and topological phases. The course will not only present essential mathematical tools such as group theory and topology, but also discuss a broad spectrum of newly-discovered topological phenomena including topological insulators, topological superconductivity, topological photonics and topological phononics.


Quantum Mechanics I (8710)

Course objectives: This course is the first semester of a year-long sequence. Roughly the goal is to cover chapters 1- 6 of Sakurai's textbook. This includes:

1. The experimental basis of QM, Postulates of QM, and Mathematical foundations (vector spaces and Bra-Ket notation)

2. Schrödinger equation, time evolution, and the Heisenberg picture

3. One-dimensional potentials, and the Simple Harmonic Oscillator

4. Symmetries in quantum mechanics.

5. Angular momentum and spin.

6. Perturbation theory.

Other topics that may be discussed if time permits: Bloch theory, Topological Insulator, Quantum Information and Quantum Computation.



Condensed Matter Physics II (8160)

This is the second part of a graduate level condensed matter physics course. The first part (Physics 8150) covered the basics of the physical properties of solids, such as crystal structure, Bloch’s theorem for the electronic band structure, lattice vibrations, and the electron gas. This course (Physics 8160) will go further and cover modern electronic structure theory for systems of interacting electrons, computational materials science, spectroscopy and elementary excitations in metals and insulators, magnetism, superconductivity and topological phases of condensed matter.


Electricity and Magnetism (4100)

First part of a two-semester course on the basic concepts of classical electrodynamics. Course topics include:

1. Review of basic math tools: vector algebra, differential and integral calculus and curvilinear coordinates;

2. Basic concepts in electrostatics: electric field and electric potential;

3. Techniques for solving electrostatics problems: Laplace's equation, method of images;

4. Electric fields in matter: polarization and dielectrics;

5. Magnetostatics: magnetic fields and vector potentials;

6. Magnetic fields in matter: magnetization, susceptibility, dia-, para- and ferromagnetism;

7. Electrodynamics: Maxwell's equations - derivation and interpretation.


Introduction to Modern Physics (3150)

The course will provide an introduction to several topics in modern physics, such as the theory of relativity and quantum mechanics, including their application to nuclear, atomic, molecular and solid state physics. The course is calculus based and relies heavily on problem solving and essay writing. The student will gain an understanding of:

(1) relativistic dynamics and energy;

(2) quantum theory of light and the particle nature of matter;

(3) “nuts” and “bolts” of quantum mechanics; how electrons tunnel through barriers; what holds molecules together?

(4) nuclear reactions and nuclear processes.



University Physics II (2760)

The course is the continuation of Physics 2750, University Physics I. It covers electrostatics, elementary circuits, magnetism, electromagnetic phenomena, optics, matter waves and particles, and modern physics. By the end of this course, students should be able to:

1. Demonstrate the ability to think critically and to use appropriate concepts to analyze qualitatively problems or situations involving physics.

2. Use appropriate mathematical techniques and concepts to obtain quantitative solutions to problems in physics.

3. Demonstrate the ability to collect, analyze and interpret data, and prepare coherent reports of their findings.