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Math self study advice for future physics self study

  1. Dec 22, 2012 #1
    I'm going into a career that is heavily based in physics and I'd like to be able to read the original source material for the physics involved. However, calculus was many, many years ago for me.

    So, to understand and learn radiation physics, and eventually quantum mechanics, my understanding is that I need to refresh and learn Calculus and likely linear algebra? Does that sound right?
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 22, 2012 #2
    Name your Career Option and at what level you studied. If you taken Introductory Physics Course and Mathematics, then just then just complete a mathematical methods books by Mary Boas /Arfken & Webar. and explore what you want to learn in Physics.
  4. Dec 22, 2012 #3
    Yeah, Mary Boas book is possibly the best source for answers to questions on mathematics in the physical sciences.

    It's really not too great at the initial teaching of calculus though (provided you really don't remember it). You might consider following along a course on MIT's opencourseware or something to get up to speed with at least Multivariable Calculus, and then Boas book would do you a great justice.
  5. Dec 23, 2012 #4
    I will be practicing Radiation Oncology, which utilizes linear accelerators in the treatment of cancer. My research interests used to be largely in the rad bio arena but have shifted towards the physics end of the spectrum. While I usually collaborate with medical physicists I'd like to have a deeper understanding of the subject so that I can be a more creative and effective researcher.

    While I don't have the time to go back and get a PhD in physics, I'd like to learn as much as I can during my academic days. Thanks for the help!
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