01:750:464/16:750:511: Mathematical Physics

Instructor: Prof. Andrew Mastbaum
Office: W320 Physics & Astronomy Building

Course Overview

This course is intended to provide a survey of mathematical tools for the practice of physics. We will aim to cover the essentials of topics such as group theory, complex analysis, and integral transforms, as well as topics in differential equations and statistical methods of practical importance. Throughout, we will emphasize computer-based methods to develop a working knowledge of useful tools for research.


Course grades will be based on homework problem sets, two exams, an independent study project, and participation.


The primary, required textbook is:

An electronic version of the textbook is available from the Rutgers University library: https://bit.ly/35Neg93. Additional chapters are available digitally here: https://booksite.elsevier.com/9780123846549/.

The following may also be useful for supplementary material, and are recommended but not required:


Week Topic Chapter(s) Description
1–2 Preliminaries 1–2 Series, complex variables, matrices, computing tools
2–4 Intro to Group Theory 17 Representations, discrete groups, Lie groups
5–8 Complex Analysis 11 Complex functions, integrals, series, calculus of residues
9 Exam 1
9–12 Integral Transforms 20 Fourier transforms, Laplace transforms, convolutions
12–13 Nonlinear Methods 33 Nonlinear functions, differential equations, phase plane analysis
13 Independent Projects
14–15 Statistical Methods 23 Probability, statistical tests, parameter estimation, machine learning
Final Exam