Graduate Classes
Learn About Our Courses
PHYSICS 503A: Classical Mechanics I
Content: An advancedlevel graduate course on classical mechanics. Topics to be covered include: Lagrangian mechanics; conservation laws; integration of equations of motion; central forces and planetary motion; collisions between particles; small oscillations; motions of rigid bodies; motion in noninertial frames; Hamilton's equations.
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor.
PHYSICS 506A: Quantum Physics I
Content: General formulation of quantum mechanics and applications to various types of problems including: matrix formulation, quantization of physical observables, time evolution of a system state, perturbation theory, theory of angular momentum, two level systems, magnetic dipoledipole interactions, spinorbit interactions, anomalous Zeeman effect, exchange degeneracy and systems of identical particles, atomic structures, and scattering theory.
Particulars: Grades are based on homework assignments and class presentations. Problems are assigned on a regular basis. Subjects of presentations will be assigned by the instructor with the consent of the presenting students.
Prerequisite: Physics 503A or consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 511A: Electrodynamics
Content: Maxwell's Equations; Variational Principles; Conservation Laws; Green's Functions; Retarded Green's Functions; RadiationField and Source Viewpoints; Models of Antennas; Spectral Distribution of Radiation; Cerenkov Radiation; Synchrotron Radiation; Propagation in Dielectric Media; Waveguides; Scattering by Small Obstacles; Diffraction.
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor.
PHYSICS 526: Statistical Physics
Content: Entropy, temperature, free energy, statistical mechanics, Gibbs ensembles, partition function, ideal gas, Fermi and Bose gases, principles of classical thermodynamics, Carnot Theorem, phase transitions, and critical phenomena.
Prerequisites: Physics 421 or equivalent.
PHYSICS 590A: Seminar in Teaching College Physics
Consents: This seminar serves two purposes: (1) to set up and prepare to teach each week’s specific undergraduate laboratory experiment and (2) to read and discuss important studies that have come from the field of physics education research. In the short term, this survey of physics education research is meant to inform and improve the beginning teaching assistant’s effectiveness in the undergraduate classroom. In the long term, this seminar provides our graduate students with a significantly deeper teaching experience than the standard job as an introductory lab TA.
Audience: Required for physics graduate students, to be taken concurrently with the first semester of service as a teaching assistant.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 590B: Seminar in Teaching College Physics II
Contents: This course accompanies a graduate teaching assistant's work in the intro electricity and magnetism labs. Various physics education research ideas, results, and articles are examined in addition to preparation for weekly teaching duties.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 502: Mathematical Physics
Content: Physics 502 is a graduate course in mathematical methods that have proved useful in solving theoretical problems in physics and that should form part of the toolkit of any theoretical physicist. In this course we will follow a modular structure in which some of the most important mathematical methods are introduced. We have selected the following modules: Probability theory and stochastic processes; Random matrix theory with applications to disordered system; An introduction to path integrals in quantum mechanics and stochastic processes; Nonlinear dynamical systems and chaos theory; Green’s functions with applications to electromagnetism.
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor.
PHYSICS 525: Introduction to Condensed Matter Physics
Content: An introduction is given to the quantum mechanics of solids. Properties of metals, insulators and semiconductors will be discussed. Equations governing the charge transport inside materials and at their interfaces will be derived. Applications such as solidstate diodes, transistors, photovoltaic and thermoelectric structures will be discussed. Quantum phenomena arising in reduced dimensions, including mesoscopic/nanoscale systems, quantum wells, surfaces and interfaces, will be discussed. Topics will also include the phenomena of superconductivity and magnetism, and the Quantum Hall state.
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor.
Text: Solid State Physics, Aschcroft, NW
PHYSICS 526: Statistical Physics
Contents: Statistical mechanics is a systematic approach to constructing probabilistic descriptions of large numbers of interacting microscopic degrees of freedom in order to understand the macroscopic behavior of equilibrium systems. Topics covered in this course include thermodynamics, probability theory, equilibrium properties of classical and quantum gases, interacting systems, phase transitions, and scaling near critical points.
Prerequisites: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 528: Continuum Mechanics
Content: This course provides students with the basic physics necessary to describe continuous media such as fluids and solids. It is an introductory course intended for graduate students as well as upperlevel undergraduate students. Students will learn how to apply Newtonian mechanics and conservation laws to deformable systems which can bend, stretch, and flow. Topics include hydrostatics, buoyancy, surface tension, elastostatics, buckling, stress and strain tensors, NavierStokes equations, incompressible flow, viscosity and viscous flow, elastic vibrations, and dimensionless numbers. The course will also include selected special topics such as turbulence, seismology, jumps and shocks, instabilities and linear stability analysis, vorticies, boundary layers, and convection.
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration)
Audience: Graduate Students and Advanced Undergraduates
PHYSICS 534: Physical Biology
Content: The course explores physical and statistical constraints used by biological systems, from bacteria, to large organisms, and to entire populations, to sense external environmental signals, and shape a response.
PHYSICS 544: Advanced Laboratory
Contents: Modern experimental techniques and handson laboratory projects, and astronomical photometry.
Particulars: Each student will complete written reports for at least three experimental projects. All student must enroll in both classes.
Prerequisites: Physics 253 and consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 556: Single Molecule Biophysics
Content: Single Molecule Biophysics covers the fundamental singlemolecule techniques (physical principles, chemical strategies for sample preparations and methods of analysis) and illustrates how they may be used in studies of biological significance. In particular, the course discusses atomic force microscopy (static and dynamic) electron microscopy and electron energy loss spectroscopic imaging, tethered particle motion (TPM), molecular manipulation techniques (magnetic and optical tweezers), fluorescence and fluorescence resonance energy transfer microscopy, superresolution techniques, and other recent developments in singlemolecule approaches. Demonstrations of some of these techniques with “field trips” to labs and facilities on campus are offered. The flipped classroom method is implemented so that much class time is dedicated to student presentations of current singlemolecule literature and studentled discussions. Finally, elements of research project development and grant writing are taught as the students are coached through a research project they have to individually develop and turn in as a major part of their grade.
Prerequisites: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 552: Biomacromolecules
Contents: Biomacromolecules is a course meant to provide graduate students and advanced undergraduates with the fundamental knowledge necessary to perform research in biophysics. Toward this goal, the first part of the course will introduce the structure of different types of biomacromolecules including an overview of the nature of the chemical bonds involved in the structure and function of biomacromolecules. The course then discusses the interaction of biomacromolecules with different types of environments, bio macromolecular driving forces and mechanics, biopolymer bending and torsional elasticity and molecular motors.
Prerequisites: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 554: Molecular Biophysics
Contents: The course focuses on how structure and dynamics at the molecular level contribute to the observed function of biological systems, with a specific emphasis on proteins. An introduction to protein structure and dynamics is given, followed by a detailed examination of specific protein systems, including those involved in solar energy conversion, visual transduction and molecular motion (motors). A parallel focus is on the physical techniques of spectroscopy and scattering that are used to obtain the molecularscale information. The physical techniques are described in the context of the problems in molecular biophysics that they have solved.
Prerequisites: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 556: Single Molecule Biophysics
Contents: This course will cover the fundamental singlemolecule techniques and illustrate their physical principles and how they may be used for the study of biological materials. In particular, the physical principles of atomic force microscopy (static and dynamic), electron microscopy, tethered particle motion (TPM), nanoparticle manipulation (magnetic and optical tweezers), singlemolecule fluorescence microscopy, and superresolution microscopy will be discussed. Demonstrations of some of these techniques will be offered. Examples of the application of each of these techniques to biophysical problems will be discussed using current publications. Each student will be required to present articles from the literature to the class and participate in vigorous discussions.
Prerequisites: Consent of the instructor.
Physics 562: Introduction to Soft Matter
Contents: This survey course covers materials such as emulsions, gels, colloids, foams, polymers, liquid crystals, surfactants, simple liquid, and sand; methods such as rheology, microscopy, laser tweezers, scattering, and simulation; and diverse other topics such as energy landscapes, effective temperature, percolation, diffusion, nonlinear dynamics, spin glasses, and fractals.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 564: Introduction to Polymers
Contents: Polymer structures and conformations, polymer synthesis, molecular weight distribution and characterization; properties of polymer solutions, solubility and miscibility, polymer blends; properties of bulk polymers, glass and melt transitions, crystallization, rubber elasticity, viscous flow and viscoelasticity, timetemperature superposition; polymer dynamics, Rouse and reptation models. This course is intended to give students an overview of important concepts in polymer science, and highlight some of the current areas of research and how it relates technological applications.
Text: Polymers Chemistry, 2^{nd} Ed., Hiemenz & Lodge, 2007.
Audience: Graduate Students and Advanced Undergraduates.
PHYSICS 591R: Graduate Seminar
Contents: This seminar is for 1st and 2nd year graduate students and covers a variety of topics associated with scientific and professional ethics, as well as attendance in departmental activities, such as the colloquia series.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 726: Advanced Statistical Physics
Contents: The course will first cover topics related to the nonequilibrium statistical mechanics of stochastic processes in physics, chemistry and biology. Topics covered will include Langevin equations, the fluctuation dissipation theorem, FokkerPlanck equations, master equations, reaction rate theory and kinetic models. We shall also study (as time permits) some topics in quantum dynamics and linear response theory, firstpassage problems in physics, and biological topics such as chemotaxis, chemoreception and movement of ions across membranes.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
Audience: Graduate Students and Advanced Undergraduates
PHYSICS 731R: Quantum Computing/Information (Special Topics in Theoretical Physics)
PHYS 731R: Special topics listed as: PHYS 380 General Relativity
Contents: An introduction to qubits, quantum gates, quantum circuits, quantum key distribution, quantum teleportation, quantum dense coding, Grover's search algorithm, Shor's factoring algorithm, quantum entanglement and Bell's theorem, and quantum error correction.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 731R: Special Topics in Theoretical Physics
PHY 731R: Theoretical Physics
Contents: This course covers advanced topics in theoretical physics, at the discretion of the instructor.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 731R: Special Topics in Theoretical Physics
PHY 731R: Field Theory
Contents: This course gives a survey of modern field theory techniques relevant to condensed matter physics such as second quantization, path integral representation for manyparticle systems, GinzburgLandau theory of phase transitions, Dirac and Majorana fields, topological gauge theories, dualities and bosonization. These techniques are introduced in the context of interacting electrons, topological phases of matter and symmetrybroken phenomena, such as crystals, superfluid and magnetic systems.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 731R: Special Topics in Theoretical Physics
PHY 731R: General Relativity
Consents: Development and solution of the Einstein field equations for cases of astrophysical interest. May include Schwarzschild and Kerr metrics for black holes, FriedmannLemaitreRobertsonWalker cosmology, and gravitational waves.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 741R: Special Topics in Biophysics
PHY 741R: Measuring and Modeling Animal Behavior
Contents: This seminar will provide a survey of modern methods for quantitatively measuring and modeling animal behavior, focusing primarily on the scientific literature. Readings will be composed of a combination of experimental, theoretical, and computational studies, with the overall goals of outlining the current state of our knowledge and highlighting areas of recent investigation. Covered topic will include: measuring behavior from images and time series, analyzing patterns and sequences of behavior, biomechanics and control, collective and social behavior, and aspects of genetic and neurobiological mechanisms. All students will be responsible for reading and presenting articles, completing approximately biweekly assignments, and developing a final project.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 751R: Special Topics in Solid State Physics
PHY 751R: Advanced Topics in Polymer Materials
Contents: This course is taken at the discretion of the instructor. It covers advanced topics in polymers which are not covered in PHYS 564.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
PHYSICS 751R: Special Topics in Solid State Physics
PHY 751R: Nanophononics
Contents: Theoretical foundations, propagation and focusing of optical fields, resolution and localization, confocal microscopy, nanoscale optical microscopy, optical superresolution techniques, optical interactions, quantum emitters, surface plasmons, optical antennas and nanophotonic devices, optical metamaterials, optical forces.
Prerequisite: Consent of the instructor.
Spring 2021 Classes
PHYSICS 511A: Electrodynamics  
Urazhdin  TuThu  6:00 PM  7:15 PM  MAX: 16  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: ONLINE 
Content: Minkowski's spacetime and Lorentz transformations; Relativistic dynamics of particles and fields; Maxwell's equations; Green's functions; Electrostatics and magnetostatics; Polarization and magnetization; Multipole expansions; Electromagnetic waves; Maxwell equations in macroscopic media; Waves in matter, reflection and refraction; Radiation and antennas; Waveguides. Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. 
PHYSICS 526: Statistical Physics  
Sussman  MW  9:40 AM  10:55 AM  MAX: 16  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: ONLINE 
Content: Entropy, temperature, free energy, statistical mechanics, Gibbs ensembles, partition function, ideal gas, Fermi and Bose gases, principles of classical thermodynamics, Carnot Theorem, phase transitions, and critical phenomena. Prerequisites: Physics 421 or equivalent.  

ELECTIVES
PHYSICS 525: Introduction to Condensed Matter Physics  
Santos  MW  2:40 PM  3:55 PM  MAX: 10  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: Online 
Content: An introduction is given to the quantum mechanics of solids. Properties of metals, insulators and semiconductors will be discussed. Equations governing the charge transport inside materials and at their interfaces will be derived. Applications such as solid state diodes, transistors, photovoltaic and thermoelectric structures will be discussed. Quantum phenomena arising in reduced dimensions, including mesoscopic/nanoscale systems, quantum wells, surfaces and interfaces, will be discussed. Topics will also include the phenomena of superconductivity and magnetism, and the Quantum Hall state. Text: Solid State Physics, Aschcroft, NW 
PHYSICS 534: Physical Biology  
Finzi  TThu  9:40 AM  10:55 AM  MAX: 10  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: Online 
Content: The course explores physical and statistical principles underlying biological activity providing the conceptual toolbox to answer biological questions at multiple length scales (see Instructor for PHY 212 prerequisite). Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
PHYSICS 544: Advanced Laboratory  
Brody  Tu  2:40 PM  5:35 PM  MAX: 10  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: Online 
Brody  Thu  2:40 PM  5:35 PM  MAX: 10  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: Online 
Content: Modern experimental techniques and handson laboratory projects, including semiconductor device physics, chaos in electronics, Xray crystallography, and astronomical photometry. Particulars: Each student will complete written reports for at least three experimental projects. All students must register for both W 2:305:00 and F 2:305:00 Prerequisites: Physics 253 and consent of the instructor. 
PHYSICS 562: Introduction to Soft Matter  
Weeks  TThu  1:00 PM  2:15 PM  MAX: 16  Credit:  Room: Online 
Content: This survey course covers materials such as emulsions, gels, colloids, foams, polymers, liquid crystals, surfactants, simple liquids, and sand; methods such as rheology, microscopy, laser tweezers, scattering, and simulation; and diverse other topics such as energy landscapes, effective temperatures, percolation, diffusion, nonlinear dynamics, spin glasses, and fractals. Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) Audience: Graduate Students and Advanced Undergraduates 
PHYSICS 751: Special Topics In Solid State Physics: Nanophotonics  
Harutyunyan  MW  11:20 AM  12:35 PM  MAX: 16  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: MSC N306 
Content: Theoretical foundations, propagation and focusing of optical fields, resolution and localization, confocal microscopy, nanoscale optical microscopy, optical superresolution techniques, optical interactions, quantum emitters, surface plasmons, optical antennas and nanophotonic devices, optical metamaterials, optical forces. 
Research Courses
PHYSICS 599R: Thesis Research (PreCandidacy)  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
PHYSICS 796: Qualifier Proposal  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
PHYSICS 799R: Advanced Research (PostCandidacy)  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
PHYSICS 598: Research Summary  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
Directed Studies
PHYSICS 597R: Directed Study  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
Teaching Courses
PHYSICS 590A/B: Seminar in Teaching  
Bing  Monday  1:00 PM  2:15 PM  MAX: 16  Credit: 1 Hour  Room: Online 
This seminar serves two purposes: (1) to set up and prepare to teach each weeks specific undergraduate laboratory experiment and (2) to read and discuss important studies that have come from the field of physics education research. In the short term, this survey of physics education research is meant to inform and improve the beginning teaching assistants effectiveness in the undergraduate classroom. In the long term, this seminar provides our graduate students with a significantly deeper teaching experience than the standard job as an introductory lab TA. Audience: Required for physics graduate students, to be taken concurrently with the first semester of service as a teaching assistant. 
Fall 2021
Core Classes
PHYSICS 503A: Classical Mechanics I  
Burton  MW  10:00 AM  11:15 AM  MAX: 16  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: Emerson E102 
Content: An advancedlevel graduate course on classical mechanics. Topics to be covered include: Lagrangian mechanics; conservation laws; integration of equations of motion; central forces and planetary motion; collisions between particles; small oscillations; motions of rigid bodies; motion in noninertial frames; Hamilton's equations. Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. 
PHYSICS 506A: Quantum Physics I  
Brody  TTH  11:30 AM  12:45 PM  MAX: 16  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: MSC N301 
Content: General formulation of quantum mechanics and applications to various types of problems including: matrix formulation, quantization of physical observables, time evolution of a system state, perturbation theory, theory of angular momentum, two level systems, magnetic dipoledipole interactions, spinorbit interactions, anomalous Zeeman effect, exchange degeneracy and systems of identical particles, atomic structures, and scattering theory. Particulars: Grades are based on homework assignments and class presentations. Problems are assigned on a regular basis. The instructor with the consent of the presenting students will assign subjects of presentations. PrerequisitePhysics 503A or consent of the instructor. 
Electives
PHYSICS 544: Advanced Laboratory  
Harutyunyan  M  2:30 PM  5:15 PM  MAX: 10  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: MSC N309 
Harutyunyan  W  2:30 PM  5:15 PM  MAX: 10  Room: MSC N309  
Content: Modern experimental techniques and handson laboratory projects, including semiconductor device physics, chaos in electronics, Xray crystallography, and astronomical photometry. Particulars: Each student will complete written reports for at least three experimental projects. All students must register for both M 2:305:15 and W 2:305:15 Prerequisites: Physics 253 and consent of the instructor. 
PHYSICS 556: Single Molecule Biophysics  
Laura Finzi  TTh  10:00 AM  11:15 AM  MAX: 16  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: Emerson E101 
Content: "The course will cover the fundamental singlemolecule techniques and illustrate their physical principles and how they may be used for the study of biological materials. In particular, the physical principles of atomic force microscopy (static and dynamic), electron microscopy, tethered particles motion (TPM), nanoparticle manipulation (magnetic and optical tweezers), singlemolecule fluorescence microscopy, and superresolution microscopy will be discussed. Demonstrations of some of these techniques will be offered. Examples of the application of each of these techniques to biophysical problems will be discussed using current publications. Each student will be required to present articles from the literature to the class and participate in vigorous discussions." 
PHYSICS 751R: Special Topics in Solid State Physics  
Ilya Nemenman, Stefan Boettcher  MW  11:30 AM  12:45 PM  MAX: 16  Credit: 3 Hours  Room: MSC N301 
Content: This course will explore relations between statistical physics and statistical inference. Emphasis will be on providing students with conceptual theoretical understanding of modern machine learning from the perspectives of statistical physics, statistical learning theory, and information theory, as well as on equipping students with practical skills for performing statistical analysis of large dimensional datasets common in modern physics. The course will consist of lectures, analytical problem solving, and practical coding exercises. It will culminate in openended group course projects. Texts: Mandatory: P Mehta et al, A highbias, low variance introduction to Manchine Learning for physicists. Physics Reports 810, 1124 (2019). Supplementary: D MacKay, Information Theory, Inference and Learning Algorithms, Cambridge University Press, 2003. W Bialek et al., Predictability, Complexity, and Learning, Neural Computation 13, 24092463 (2001). Additional primary literature will be assigned as needed. & . Audience: Graduate Students. Consent of the Instructors 
Research Courses
PHYSICS 599R: Thesis Research (PreCandidacy)  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
PHYSICS 799R: Advanced Research (PostCandidacy)  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
PHYSICS 598: Research Summary  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
Directed Studies
PHYSICS 597R: Directed Study  
Faculty  TBA  TBA  
Prerequisite: (Written Permission of Instructor Required Prior to PreRegistration) 
Teaching Courses
PHYSICS 590/A: Seminar in Teaching  
Bing  Wednesday  8:30 AM  9:45 AM  MAX: 16  Credit: 1 Hour  Room: MSC W307C 
This seminar serves two purposes: (1) to set up and prepare to teach each week's specific undergraduate laboratory experiment and (2) to read and discuss important studies that have come from the field of physics education research. In the short term, this survey of physics education research is meant to inform and improve the beginning teaching assistant¿s effectiveness in the undergraduate classroom. In the long term, this seminar provides our graduate students with a significantly deeper teaching experience than the standard job as an introductory lab TA. Audience: Required for physics graduate students, to be taken concurrently with the first semester of service as a teaching assistant.

PHYSICS 591R: Graduate Seminar  
TBD  TBD  TBD  MAX: 16  Credit: 1 Hour  Room: TBD 
This seminar is for 1st and 2nd year students and covers a variety of topics associated with scientific and professional ethics, as well as attendance in departmental activities, such as the colloquia series.
