Contemporary Machine Learning for Physicists
Prof: Jared Kaplan
Schedule: M&F at 1 PM (Bloomberg 274)
This is a graduate-level course on contemporary (post-2012, neural network based) machine learning, presented in a style targeted at physicists with no prior knowledge. The course aims to be simultaneously highly pragmatic (ie focused on state-of-the-art methods) and fairly theoretical, and is very unlikely to avoid this pitfall.
Prerequisites: An excellent understanding of linear algebra, and general mathematical/physical maturity. The pace of the course will be similar to that of other advanced graduate courses in physics (eg QFT).
Course Materials: My lecture notes will be periodically updated throughout the semester. Additional resources may be recommended to those attending the course.
Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics
This was an advanced undergraduate course on thermodynamics and statistical physics. Topics included basics of temperature, heat, and work; entropy, state-counting, probability, and the second law; partition functions and the Boltzmann distribution; applications to engines, refrigerators, and computation; phase transitions; basics of quantum statistical mechanics.
Prerequisites: An excellent understanding of mechanics, and ideally some basic knowledge of quantum mechanics.
Course Materials: The main textbook for the course is Schroeder’s An Introduction to Thermal Physics (1999/2000). Here are rough, incomplete lecture notes.
Quantum Field Theory
Fall 2016 & Spring 2017
This was a graduate QFT course. The first semester covers basic lattice phonon models and their continuum field theory limit, canonical quantization, implications of Lorentz invariance, effective field theory, quantization and Feynman rules for scalars, renormalization and RG flows, and the basics of scalar and spinor QED. In the second semester we will have further discussions of QED, Wilsonian renormalization, continuous global and gauge symmetries, Nambu-Goldstone bosons and the spontaneous breaking of global symmetries, the Higgs mechanism, the standard model, deep inelastic scattering, and anomalies.
Prerequisites: An excellent understanding of undergraduate physics, especially Quantum Mechanics.
Course Materials: The Course Notes also include some discussion of background and other references. The main textbook was Schwartz’s Quantum Field Theory and the Standard Model.
Assignments: There were biweekly problem sets and a take home final / problem set at the end of the course.
Advanced Particle Physics: AdS/CFT
Fall 2013 and 2015
This was a course on AdS/CFT from the point of view of Effective Field Theory and the Conformal Bootstrap, along with some other more advanced topics.
Assignments: Biweekly problem sets and student presentations at the end of the course.