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I want to make sure I have the right understanding of the symmetrization requirement...in particular what is discussed in section 5.1 in Griffiths' Introduction to Quantum Mechanics 2nd edition. When we have a two-electron state, the wave function (described by the product both its position wave function and spinor) has to be antisymmetric with exchange of the electron. Since the singlet spinor function is antisymmetric, it must be combined with a symmetric spatial function in order for it to properly describe a fermion (in this case an electron).

I am just really confused because Griffiths seems to derive that just the position wave function is antisymmetric for fermions and symmetric for bosons on pages 203-205.

However, on page 210 he seems to pull out of thin air the fact that the whole wave function has to be antisymmetric for fermions and symmetric for bosons and the position wave function for a fermion can be BOTH symmetric or antisymmetric depending on the corresponding spinor.

Any help with the clarification would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

D

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# Correct understanding of symmetrization requirement?

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