Phys 5521: Quantum Mechanics I
Fall 2012 Syllabus

10-10:50 am MWF in 249 MWAH.

Instructor: Prof. Hiller
Assistant: Dr. Chabysheva

Office: 353 Marshall W. Alworth Hall (MWAH)
Hours: 4 MW in 195 MWAH, 11 F in 353 MWAH, and by appointment.
Phone: 218-726-7594
Home page:

Text: E. Merzbacher, Quantum Mechanics, 3rd ed.

Prerequisites: Phys 4021 Quantum Physics II or equivalent.



Course outline:
Week Chapters Topics
1-3 1-4 Review of fundamentals
4-5 6,5 One-dimensional systems
Exam #1 1-6 Wednesday, October 3
6-7 7,8 Approximation methods
8-9 9,10 Vector spaces; quantum postulates
Exam #2 7-11 Friday, November 2
10 11 Orbital angular momentum
11-13 12 Three-dimensional systems
14 16 Spin
15 Identical particles
Final Exam 12 noon, Wednesday, December 19.

Homework: The outline for the semester indicates the chapter(s) to be read before class meetings for the coming week. Reading assignments that are more precise will be given in class. Assignments of recommended problems will also be given. These problems are for practice, to improve understanding of the material and to prepare for quizzes and exams.

Class participation: Participation is required. You are expected to be able to demonstrate your preparation for class by being able to answer questions. You will also be expected to work problems in class, to hand in at the end of class; this work (unlike the quizzes) will be open book, open notes, and open discussion with instructors and other students.

Quizzes: For each Wednesday (unless there is an exam that week!), there will be a quiz, to check your progress in studying the material. The quiz will be drawn from previously recommended problems, reading assignments, lectures, and in-class activities. It will be closed book and closed notes, but necessary formulas will be provided. A calculator is permitted and may sometimes be useful. A snow day will postpone the quiz to the next class meeting.

Exams: There will be two midterms and a final. The final will concentrate on material covered after the second midterm; however, the material covered in this course is cumulative by nature. All exams will be closed book and closed notes. Useful formulas will be provided. Do bring a calculator, just in case. For the purposes of the exams, the content of the course is determined by the lectures, discussions, quizzes, problems, and reading assignments.

Exam makeup policy: If an absence from an exam is anticipated, this should be discussed with the instructor in advance of the exam. An equivalent exam will be scheduled as soon as possible for those justifiably absent. Absence from an exam without prior permission must be due to uncontrollable circumstances (explained in writing) in order to be considered justifiable.

Determination of grades: Grades will be determined from four components as follows:
1. Quizzes 30%
2. Class participation 15%
3. Midterm exams 15% each
4. Final exam 25%
Letter grades will be assigned according to the following approximate scale:
A 70-100, B 55-70, C 40-55, D 30-40, F 0-30.
Plus and minus signs will be used. Homework and exams will be scored with this scale in mind; for example, a score of 7 for a 10-point problem can be interpreted as an A-.

Posting of grades: Grades will be posted on an electronic gradebook, which can be reached by a direct link from the course home page. Your e-mail ID and password will give you access to your entries.

A note on disabilities: Individuals who have any disability, either permanent or temporary, which might affect their ability to perform in this class are encouraged to inform the instructor at the start of the semester. Adaptation of methods, materials, or testing may be made as required to provide for equitable participation. To learn about the services that UMD provides to students with disabilities, contact Disability Resources, 258 Kirby Student Center, extension 6130.

Academic integrity: UMD's Student Academic Integrity Policy can be found at

Classroom conduct: UMD's Student Conduct Code can be found at

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Last Modified: Monday, 5-Nov-2012 07:13:15 CST
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