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Best Text to Learn Quantum Mechanics at Graduate Level?

  1. Apr 5, 2013 #1
    So I believe I have a very good understanding of QM as it was taught at the undergraduate level. I have some downtime next semester so I wanted to take it a step further and understand it at a much deeper level. Would it be better to read through Dirac's famous text or Principles of QM by Shankar? Or another text?

    I learned QM from Goswami's text.

    Thanks all!
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 6, 2013 #2


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    Shankar is a popular one, and pretty readable.
  4. Apr 6, 2013 #3


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    If you are interested in how quantum mechanics works our for real, interacting many-body systems, you might also want to have a look at some quantum chemistry textbooks (e.g., "Molecular electronic structure theory" by Helgaker, Joergensen and Olsen, but other ones like Levine, Jensen or Cramer might be more accessible in the beginning). As far as dealing with real systems goes, Quantum chemistry and might be a better place to start than physics QM, because the treated systems can be small enough to exactly understand what one is doing, and the impact of approximations can be checked (this is often not the case in solid state physics or nuclear physics, the other major branches dealing with interacting quantum systems).
  5. Apr 6, 2013 #4


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    I thought the title said ".. at graduate level"? Shankar isn't a text meant for the graduate level, is it?

    Sakurai's text is what I often see used at the graduate level QM classes.

  6. Apr 7, 2013 #5
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
  7. Apr 8, 2013 #6
    1.Modern Quantum Mechanics by Sakurai.

    2.Quantum Mechanics by Merzbacher.
  8. Apr 8, 2013 #7


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    'Quantum Mechanics' by Leslie Ballentine contains a wealth of information in a readable presentation. It is the only textbook on quantum mechanics which puts symmetries first, as they should be (for example, in case of QFT the same is accomplished by the 1st volume of Weinberg's text).
  9. Apr 8, 2013 #8
    thanks for all the replies guys! I'm a little curious why no one recommends Dirac's text on the Principles of QM? Is it just outdated? I've heard that Schwinger read that text at the age of 14; not sure if that's true!
  10. Apr 8, 2013 #9
    I'd suggest "Quantum Mechanics" and "Advanced Quantum Mechanics" by Schwabl.
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