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This subject introduces students to two key concepts in physics: quantum mechanics and Einstein’s theory of special relativity. Quantum mechanics topics include the quantum theory of light, the particle nature of matter, matter waves, quantum mechanics in one dimension and tunneling phenomena. Special relativity topics will include the foundations of special relativity, spacetime invariance, simultaneity, and Minkowski diagrams, relativistic kinematics, the Doppler effect, relativistic dynamics, and nuclear reactions.
Intended learning outcomes
To challenge students to expand their knowledge of fundamental physics principles and develop their capacity to:
- discuss the key observations and events that led to the development of quantum mechanics and special relativity;
- explain the fundamental principles of quantum mechanics and special relativity and use these principles in the analysis of simple problems;
- acquire and interpret experimental data and perform computer modelling.
A student who completes this subject should be able to:
- explain their understanding of physics principles and applications lucidly, both in writing and orally;
- acquire and interpret experimental data and design experimental investigations;
- participate as an effective member of a group in tutorial discussions, laboratory and study groups;
- think independently and analytically, and direct his or her own learning;
- manage time effectively in order to be prepared for regular practical and tutorial classes, tests, the examination and to complete assignments.
Last updated: 8 November 2019