Which maths textbook is better?

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In summary, both books have more material than what you would get in a single course, but Arfken&Weber are more user-friendly.
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Jason123456
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Which one is better?
Mathematical methods for Physicists by George B. Arfken and Hans J. Weber or
Mathematical methods for physics and engineering by K. F. Riley M. P. Hobson and S. J. Bence

P.s Is there a solution manual for the 4th edition of Mathematical methods for Physicists by George B. Arfken and Hans J. Weber ?
 
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  • #2
Better for what? It is really not a well defined question unless you can specify more precisely what it is you are looking for from those books.
 
  • #3
Hi Orodruin,
Thank you for pointing the ambiguity of the question

I want to know which one is more user-friendly while providing 'enough' maths for a general undergraduate physics course
 
  • #4
User friendliness is a matter of taste an what one person finds good, others will find too theoretical or too sloppy (or simply not like the approach). Both books are bricks and clearly cover more material than you would be able to in a single course. I do not have any personal experience in learning from either, but my impression is that they generally work better as reference material than for plowing through to learn a subject.

I would suggest that you have a look at each book you consider beforehand (in a library or in an online preview) to find out which you prefer.

Disclosure: The books you mention are two of the main competitors to my own textbook although they start at a lower level with regards to prerequisites and cover many basic topics that I assume the reader has acquired elsewhere.
 
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  • #5
Awesome
I will have a look at yours as well
 
  • #6
Orodruin said:
Disclosure: The books you mention are two of the main competitors to my own textbook although they start at a lower level with regards to prerequisites and cover many basic topics that I assume the reader has acquired elsewhere.
Well, but your's is much better than Arfken&Weber! I don't know the book by Riley et al.
 
  • #7
vanhees71 said:
Well, but your's is much better than Arfken&Weber! I don't know the book by Riley et al.
While I would like to think so, my opinion on the matter would be rather biased I believe. :rolleyes:

Also, the OP will not find the really introductory stuff (like linear algebra and calculus) in my book and I am not completely sure exactly what topics he is considering.
 
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Jason123456 said:
user-friendly

Hobson Riley starts at a level lower than Arfken Weber. If you are comfortable with Calculus upto Infinite Series, Vector Calculus and with Algebra, Arfken Weber is the better choice. If not then Hobson Riley or ML Boas are of similar level both below Arfken Weber.

As @Orodruin has stated all books cover more material than a conventional course would require. So a guide or professor can only guide you what to read, when to read and how to read.
 
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1. What are the key factors to consider when choosing a maths textbook?

When choosing a maths textbook, it is important to consider the curriculum or standards it aligns with, the level of difficulty or grade level it is designed for, the teaching approach or methodology used, the comprehensiveness of the content, and any additional resources or support materials included.

2. Is it better to choose a textbook from a well-known publisher or a newer, lesser-known publisher?

There is no definitive answer to this question as it ultimately depends on personal preference and the specific textbook in question. Some well-known publishers may have a long-standing reputation for producing high-quality textbooks, while newer publishers may offer innovative approaches or cater to specific learning styles. It is important to research and compare the textbooks from both types of publishers to make an informed decision.

3. Are there any online reviews or ratings available for different maths textbooks?

Yes, there are various websites and forums where teachers, students, and parents can leave reviews and ratings for different maths textbooks. It can be helpful to read these reviews to gain insight into the strengths and weaknesses of a particular textbook and how it has worked for others.

4. How important is the layout and design of a maths textbook?

The layout and design of a textbook can greatly impact the learning experience for students. A textbook with clear and organized visual aids, well-explained examples, and a user-friendly format can make it easier for students to understand and retain the material. However, the content and teaching approach are ultimately more important than the design.

5. Are there any free or open-source maths textbooks available?

Yes, there are many free or open-source maths textbooks available online. These can be a great resource for teachers and students, especially for those on a tight budget. However, it is important to carefully evaluate the quality and relevance of these textbooks before using them in the classroom.

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