Modern Physics
Course Documents


Sample Syllabus (FA10)

QM Learning Goals (SP11)


Course Calendars
SP11  INT w/ SR [CB]
FA10  INT w/o SR [NF/CB]
SM09  UBC [CW]
FA07  PHYS w/ SR [NF/JB]
SP07  ENG [NF]
FA06  ENG [NF]
SP06  ENG [CW/KP/SM]
FA05  ENG [CW/KP/SM]

QM Learning Goals (2006)

Overview/Student Difficulties

Course Materials

The archived modern physics materials are available together as a package in the Download All Materials tab. At left are links to a sample syllabus from the FA10 semester; a list of learning goals (quantum only) for the SP11 semester; and course calendars for various incarnations of the course running from FA05-SP11 - also, a list of quantum learning goals (2006); and an overview of the 2006 materials and observations of student difficulties (by Sam McKagan). The best way to distinguish between the various courses (in terms of content, emphasis, etc.) is to compare their calendars. Here, as in the course description, INT = "with modern experiments"; SR = "special relativity"; PHYS = "for physics majors"; ENG = "for engineering majors"; UBC = "University of British Columbia". Any password-protected links can be accessed by contacting Charles.Baily "at" Colorado.EDU.

The course calendar below (for SP11 - with SR) is the simplest way to browse the most current materials - clicking on the links in the calendar leads to the actual lecture slides, clicker responses, PhET simulations, and homework assignments for that week. There are also lists of learning goals for Exams 2 & 3 (quantum only). CU-FA10 was a very similar course, but without SR, so there is more end-material on bonding, semiconductors, diodes, etc. UBC-SM09 would be most similar to the original 2006 materials described in the first part of the course description.


Modern Physics - CSM - Spring 2011

Written homework was assigned on Tuesdays, and due at the beginning of class on the Thursday in the following week (i.e., 10 days later). Students were expected to complete the readings before the lecture.
  WEEK
  Tuesday
Lecture
  Thursday
Lecture
 Homework due
next Thursday!

  Week 1

  No Class

  1. Introduction, math review

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx

  Homework 01

  Week 2

  2. E&M review, waves & wave equations

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx
  PhET: Sound, Radio Waves

  3. Interference, polarization,
  Young’s double-slit experiment
  lecture slides: pdf  pptx  clickers
  PhET: Wave Interference

  Homework 02

  Week 3

  4. Michelson-Morley experiment,
  SR postulates
  lecture slides: pdf  pptx  clickers

  5. Time dilation, length contraction

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers

  Homework 03

  Week 4

  6. Lorentz transformations, spacetime,
  addition of velocities
  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers

  7. Relativistic momentum, energy

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers

  No new homework

  Week 5

  8. Modeling in physics, intro to quantum

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx

  Exam 1

  Homework 04

  Week 6

  9. Photoelectric effect 1

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Photoelectric Effect

  10. Photoelectric effect 2, photons

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers

  Homework 05

  Week 7

  11. Photons, atomic spectra

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Neon Lights and Discharge Lamps

  12. Lasers

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Lasers (!!)

  Homework 06

  Week 8

  13. Bohr model, de Broglie waves

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Models of Hydrogen

  14. Stern-Gerlach experiments

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Stern-Gerlach Experiment, Magnets
  Reading: “100 Years of Quantum Mysteries“

  Homework 07
  Reading Questions

  Week 9

  15. Repeated spin measurements, probability

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  Reading: “A Quantum Threat to Special Relativity”

  16. Entanglement, EPR, quantum cryptography

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  Reading: “Is the moon there when nobody looks?”

  Homework 08
  Reading Questions

  Week 10

  17. Single-photon experiments, complementarity

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Quantum Wave Interference
  Reading: “The Reality of the Quantum World”

  18. Electron diffraction, matter waves,
  uncertainty principle
  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Fourier: Making Waves
  Reading: “The Duality in Matter and Light”

  Homework 09
  Reading Questions

  Week 11

  19. Matter waves, Review for Exam 2

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers

  Exam 2

  Learning Goals pdf  docx

  No New Homework

  Week 12

  20. Wave equations, Schrodinger equation,
  square well potential
  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers

  21. Infinite/finite square well, tunneling

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers

  Homework 10

  Week 13

  22. Tunneling, alpha-decay

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Quantum Tunneling, α-Decay

  23. Radioactivity, STM's

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Nuclear Fusion

  Homework 11

  Week 14

  24. Hydrogen atom 1

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  falstad applets

  25. Hydrogen atom 2

  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  PhET: Quantum Bound States

  Homework 12

  Week 14

  26. Multi-electron atoms, periodic table,
  review for Exam 3
  lecture slides: pdf  pptx

  Exam 3

  Learning Goals pdf  docx

  No New Homework

  Week 15

  27. Molecular bonding, Bose-Einstein
  Condensates
  lecture slides: pdf  pptx   clickers
  Laser Cooling sims

  Review for final exam
  

  Final Exam