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Graduate level and undergraduate level textbooks

  • #1

Main Question or Discussion Point

Hi.

Since I started looking for books to learn physics I've had a problem understanding what exactly is meant by "graduate level" and "undergraduate level" textbooks, given how two books in each category can seem to cover the same topics. A good example of this is Weinberg's "Lectures on Quantum Mechanics" and Rae's "Quantum Mechanics". The contents look very similar with a few exceptions.

So what is it that puts a book on quantum mechanics in either level? And how can I distinguish that when the subjects covered look similar?
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
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Sometimes it's in the description of the book, but normally textbook selection is part of the "value added" of a university. At many schools, Jackson is a graduate-level text. At MIT, it was used for both graduate and advanced undergraduates. Why? Because MIT.
 
  • #3
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A better option is to categorise the books into beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. This is generally independent of institutions. For example, everybody will agree that Griffiths is a beginner-level and Jackson is a advanced-level text.
 
  • #4
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FourEyedRaven, I'd be very, very wary about taking advice on graduate-level textbooks from a high school graduate.
 

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