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Mathematical physics textbooksuggestions please

  1. Feb 3, 2013 #1
    I am an high school student starting grade 11 this year . I have been interested in physics since class 6 and i have been studying advanced physics since then . IN grade 9 and 10 i have read and solved problems from Resnick ,Halliday and walker's book and completed it .
    I thought myself calculus( integration , differentiation and solving differential equations and nothing more) , trigonometry , higher algebra and geometry side by side with physics .

    I am looking for some good mathematical physics textbook . I want one that would teach me enough mathematics required for a physics undergraduate .
    So i asked these professors at a local universities . One of them recommended
    and the other professor thought " MATHEMATICAL METHODS FOR PHYSICISTS by Arfken , Weber" is better.
    I looked up both books at Amazon and wondering which one to go for. Any suggestions
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 3, 2013 #2
    Arfken & Weber is level higher than Mary L Boas. Also better to complete AP Calculus BC course before starting Boas.
  4. Feb 3, 2013 #3
    i have complete the following courses courses from MIT OpenCourseWare
    18.01 Single-Variable Calculus and 18.02 Multi-variable Calculus along with their problem sets and exams

    So which book do you recommend for me . I want to learn all math for a physics undergrad
  5. Feb 3, 2013 #4
    When I was in Academic year 12 preparing for AP tests and IPhO, I was gone through this route firstly University Physics 12th Ed with Problem Solving Strategies.
    After that Kleppnar Mech. Purcell E&M and Krane Modern Phy. and for Maths Lang Linear Algebra & Apostol Calculus.

    So I recommend
    1.For General Purpose Lang Linear Algebra & Apostol Calculus
    2.For IPhO Lang Algebra 3rd Ed & Schaum's outline of Advanced Calculus (because IPhO requires the solution in Algebric Method than using Calculus. If you use Calculus they will give you 1/10)
  6. Feb 3, 2013 #5
    thanks SnowLeopard .

    Any more suggestions . I really want to know which one is better Arfken weber or Mary L boas
  7. Feb 3, 2013 #6
    "Better" is a highly subjective term. I used Arfken/Weber for a class and I really didn't like it. It's more of a reference book than a learning book. The explanations are too brief properly learn the material.
  8. Feb 3, 2013 #7
    Okay then please suggest some good learning books for learning all the math for undergrad physics
  9. Feb 3, 2013 #8
    Boas is better imo at doing what it aims to do. It's a better upper division methods book than Arfken is a graduate one.
  10. Feb 3, 2013 #9
    Better to do Undergraduate Physics with Undergraduate Maths at same time rather than doing Mathematics for Undergrad Physics and again Mathematics for Graduate Physics.
  11. Feb 3, 2013 #10
    Both of the books you mentioned in the OP contain only analysis and linear algebra. It is true that most of undergraduate physics uses this a fair bit, for example in wave physics and quantum mechanics. However, in electromegnetism you encounter your first inherently geometric physics, namely Maxwell's equations and special relativity.

    In the long run, modern physics is based on geometry, specifically differential geometry. There is a great book called "The Geometry of Physics". The prerequisites are linear algebra and multivariable calculus. You should also know some physics to get a context for the math presented. I reccomend that you take a look at it.
  12. Feb 24, 2013 #11
    Snow Leopard mentioned Kleppner's Mechanics..I liked this book a lot.
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