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Good books on electricity/magnetism?

  1. Feb 12, 2005 #1
    hello. instead of asking exactly what electricity is and how it works and whatnot, i was wondering if there are any good books on the subject. i would appreciate any recommendations seeing as i know nothing on the subject (bookwise at least). thank you very much.
     
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  3. Feb 12, 2005 #2

    dextercioby

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    It all boils down to how much maths you know...So how much do you...?

    Daniel.
     
  4. Feb 12, 2005 #3
    i do not know calculus yet (im in the process of learning it) so im fairly certain a book using this would bring me more confusion than enlightenment (unless of course making me struggle would be good).
     
  5. Feb 12, 2005 #4

    dextercioby

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    Then i would reccomend a general physics textbook approach.Obviously a monography would require (a lotta) calculus.
    Try Halliday & Resnick or something equivalent (but worse wrt quality of exposure).

    Daniel.
     
  6. Feb 13, 2005 #5
    well, what specifically in calculus do you have to know? maybe i could skip to those skills. i only have my high school physics text book but ill try it.
     
  7. Feb 13, 2005 #6

    dextercioby

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    Computing derivatives of functions of one variable is a "must" and integration as well.It's the minimum of calculus that you should aquire in HS...

    Daniel.
     
  8. Feb 13, 2005 #7
    i can do derivatives and ill need to dig back to integrals (i took precalculus last year). with these skills what books would you recommend now?
     
  9. Feb 13, 2005 #8

    dextercioby

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    The same General Physics courses...You still cannot go to Feynman or a monography...

    Daniel.
     
  10. Feb 14, 2005 #9
    Halliday, Resnick and Krane "Physics" 5th edition <-- less math

    Also you may try Griffiths' book "Introduction to Electrodynamics". The first chapter is vector calculus.
     
  11. Feb 14, 2005 #10
    Start playing around with vector calculus now. I don't understand why they usually hold it back until calc 3, because it is very important and VERY useful.
     
  12. Feb 14, 2005 #11
    well, in precalculus we were doing math with vectors so im going to assume it was vector calculus, though im not sure. i found all my notes and everything from the class so ill have to go through them. are there any good books that aren't text books? text books aren't easily obtainable and they are quite expensive.
     
  13. Feb 14, 2005 #12

    pervect

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    You'll need div, grad, and curl, usually written as

    [tex]
    \nabla \cdot, \nabla, \nabla \times
    [/tex]

    to understand some of the more advanced treatments of electromagnetism. These operators probably won't be familiar to you yet, even if you've done some calculus with vectors.

    I think you've gotten some good advice - the first step is to read a treatment of the problem without the div, grad, and curl approach. The next level of refinement involves div, grad, & curl.

    There's actually a pretty good specialized book out, called "Div, grad, curl and all that" that goes into these particular operators which you could read in conjunction with a text that took that approach. But I think you'd be much better off skipping the vector calculus for your fisrt go-around.

    On your *third* go around with electromagnetism, in graduate school, you can then look forward to yet another approach, invloving the Faraday tensor You may be tempted to "skip around" - but you really can't. You need to build a foundation, first, before moving on.
     
  14. Feb 14, 2005 #13

    jtbell

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    Some calculus-level general physics books (Halliday & Resnick comes to mind, I used it when I was an undergraduate) use electromagnetism to introduce the concepts of surface and line integrals in order to develop Maxwell's Equations in their integral formulation.
     
  15. Feb 15, 2005 #14
    in the library all i could find were books aimed for children so i have begun reading the electricity section in my physics book. are div, grad, and curl abbreviations or are those the full names? obviously i have never heard of them (i don't think ive heard the term operator either).
     
  16. Feb 15, 2005 #15

    dextercioby

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    "Curl" is not an abbreviation,it IS the word "curl"."grad" is from "gradient" and "div" from "divergence"...

    Be patient...Some day,they will look very simple to you...

    Daniel.
     
  17. Feb 17, 2005 #16

    "Introduction to Electrodynamics" by David Griffiths is an excellent book to study electromagnetism. But if you are a beginner you need to know calculus atleast upto high school level to start using this book.

    Otherwise the other books which use less calculus are "Fundamentals of Physics" by Resnick, Halliday or "University Physics" by Sears, Zemansky, Young and Freedman.
     
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