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Introduction to Quantum Mechanics Hardcover – Aug 2 1994

56 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley; 1 edition (Aug. 2 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0131244051
  • ISBN-13: 978-0131244054
  • Product Dimensions: 17.3 x 2.3 x 25.1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 771 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #226,768 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From the Publisher

Written by the author of the best-selling E & M text, this text is designed to teach students how to DO quantum mechanics. Part I covers the basic theory; Part II develops approximation schemes and real-world applications.

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Steven M Hug on July 13 2004
Format: Hardcover
This is the best first course quantum mechanics text book by far. I used it as a text in first semester QM. How do I know it is the best? During first semester qm I spent many hours in the school library reading qm books. The library had a large section of qm books. I used to take 10 to 20 books home at a time. I was always looking for better explanations of particular expositions, and I found that often one book gave the clearest exposition in a particular area. Also, Ifound it helpful to read how several books described, for example, solution to the step function and others. But David Griffiths book is the best written book of all those others I read.
The Griffiths book is easy to understand. That is what makes it a good book for the beginning student of qm. Let me give an example of what I am saying: Fourty five years ago, when I first studied calculus, there was only one text book. It was the then venerable Calculus and Analytic Geometry by George Thomas, Jr. This book was not easy to study. It is not a well written book compared to modern calculus text books. But now there are many good calculus text books. Now calculus is a fairly easy subject because the text books are well written. They are student friendly. I think that most qm books are like the Thomas book in that they are not student friendly, and the Griffiths book is the first student friendly qm book in my view.
The one criticism that students might have of the Griffiths books is that the problems are long and time consuming. This is true if you do not use Mathematica or some other math program. If you use Mathematica, the problems can be worked in minutes.
The Griffiths book uses wave mechanics notation throughout, which every physicist must learn. To learn the Dirac notation, the best book I found (and the most elegant qm book I found) is Quantum Mechanics, by Claude Cohen-Tannoudji, Bernard Diu, and Franck Laloe.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on Jan. 6 1999
Format: Hardcover
Don't be fooled by the informal style of this text. Griffiths has a bad habit of leaving many important results to the exercises, and he also briskly jumps over many difficult steps. He doesn't even provide a plausability argument for the Schroedinger equation (I know it's not necessary, but it wouldn't hurt to provide the steps how Schroedinger arrived at his famous equation).
His exercises are very lousy and have little effect in reinforcing the material. A much better book is <I>Principles of Quantum Mechanics</I> by Shankar or <I>Quantum Mechanics</I> by Cohen-Tannoudji.
In short, Griffiths' text has too many holes. (It's a shame this book is not in par with his excellent <I>Introduction to Electrodynamics</I>.)
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By James Jones on March 10 2000
Format: Hardcover
This text is much like Griffith's intro to electrodynamics. If you don't need to learn anything, and just want a simple answer to basic questions, buy this book. If, however, you are taking a class in quantum mechanics, don't waste your money. Griffith brings up interesting questions without ever answering them. He offers no assistance in solving the more demanding problems which would aid the learning process. If you're majoring in physics stay away from Griffith as a whole. Rholf is a much better publisher and writer. Check out his texts if you're serious about an education.
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Format: Hardcover
I've been using this book as the text for my undergraduate quantum course for several years. It is far superior to the books I used ~25 years ago when I first studied quantum as an undergrad.
Griffiths' strategy of using chapters1&2 to review probility and make student's comfortable with the mathematical machinery of QM, then reviewing Linear Algebra leading up to Hilbert spaces in Chapter 3, before starting anew with the postulates of QM makes a lot of pedagogical success. Typically, at least half my undergrad students need the math review. All of them have seen Shroedinger's Eq in a Modern Physics class that comes before QM, but without much motivation. I find Griffiths' motivation of the postulates far more intuitive than the more common "let's see what properties a QM wave equation-equivalent might have" approach. Other texts tend to give the axioms short shrift, but not Griffiths.
I'm an experimentalist, but I really groove with this book that presents more of a theorists approach. I do find I need to supplement my class lectures with illustrative examples to provide my students with balance, but it would be harder to add the theory into other books which have more examples, but gloss over the theory. This is a physicist's QM book. If you are an engineer or chemist who just wants to learn to do plug and chug problems, look elsewhere.
Several ace students (including a former student of mine) complain the book is not sufficiently advanced. If undergrads are ready for Sakurai, and have the sophistication for a higher level approach, all the more power to them! However, the goal of an *undergraduate* text is to prepare students for QM at the level of Sakurai. There is a reason that most undergrad courses don't use graduate texts.
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Format: Hardcover
I had previously written a review of this text based upon my experiences with it first semester, dealing mostly with chapters 1-4. Upon further reading of the book and comparison to various other texts (the Baym, Sakurai and Shankar, specifically), I have decided that I need to rewrite my review.
First off, the good side: If you're interested in a wave mechanics approach to learning quantum mechanics, this book isn't horrible. You certainly learn a lot about solving differential equations, although you are never asked to solve any yourself. Also, the problems for the students to work range from the insanely trivial to the intriguingly difficult. Now for the bad part...
Well, the problem with those worked problems is that there is a lot of important stuff in the problems, and Griffiths assumes you have worked every single problem. This wouldn't be an issue, except most of the chapters have over 50 problems, and the odds that you did the right problem you need when he references that problem three chapters later is pretty slim.
Also, he does not introduce you to the Dirac notation or the linear algebra approach to quantum mechanics until the third chapter, after which he promptly discards that powerful tool in favor of the way he had been going, which is with wave mechanics. So he deprives the readers of knowledge of a remarkably useful language to discuss quantum mechanics.
He begins with the Schrodinger equation, without any motivation at all, and proceeds from there.
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