Physics 560
Condensed Matter Physics

Prof. Gregory J. MacDougall

General Info Notes Homework Gradebook

General Information

Course Description
The goal of this course is to set the foundation for future coursework and research in condensed matter physics. We will cover topics such as the lattice and electronic structure of crystalline systems, metals, semi-conductors, magnetically ordered materials, and superconductivity. A more detailed outline is given in the syllabus posted below.

PHYS427 and PHYS 580, which are senior level statistical physics and graduate level quantum mechanics, respectively. Concepts from both with be used extensively in this course.

Prof. Gregory MacDougall, MRL 216  → gmacdoug @ with "560" in the subject line
     or call me at 300-0147

Brandon Langley  →

Loomis 158,  
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12:30 - 1:50 pm

Final Exam
Friday, May 10
8:00 - 11:00 am
Loomis 144

Office Hours
Fridays, 2:00 - 5:00 pm

Course Text Book
"Condensed Matter Physics" by Michael P. Marder
(Available electronically through the University Library Catalogue.)

Recommended Supplementary Texts
"Solid State Physics" by Neil Ashcroft and David Mermin

See here.



Course Grading

Your grade in this course will be based on successful completion of homework assignments (40%), one mid-term exam (15%), and the final exam (45%).

Homework due dates and time
There will be roughly one problem set every two weeks, consisting of a combination of textbook questions and original problems. Homework will be posted on the course webpage and due at 5:00 PM on the day two weeks after first posted. Assignments will be penalized 25% for every day the homework is late. If one misses the 5:00PM deadline on Friday, the penalty for handing assignments on Monday is 50%. After 4 days (or 2 plus a weekend), absolutely no credit will be awarded.
Academic dishonesty is a very serious matter. Any indications that homework solutions were derived from online internet sources will be acted upon accordingly.

General Policy Regarding Grading
In all homework and exams, graders are instructed to focus on the knowledge demonstrated by the student, the problem solving strategy employed, and on the clarity of the work provided. Students should be aware that answers without work are graded as zero, and part marks are only given if the work shows some coherence. Random equations which are not serving a specific purpose in executing a strategy will be disregarded. Please explain in equations, pictures and words what is being done, and provide as much algebra as needed so that one of your fellow students could pick up and read your solution without guidance. There are also no points awarded for saving paper! Please space out your work and make sure it is legible.