Presentations will begin on November
Here is the description in the
undergraduate calendar: Minkowski space,
Lorentz metric, Maxwell's equations, General
Relativity, geodesics, curvature, black hole
geometries and other selected topics.
To learn the basic geometrical ideas developed over the centuries in the quest to understand the physical world that surrounds us. Students are responsible for reading the relevant material from the textbook and the reference books on their own (that's known as experiential learning) in preparation for the lectures. The five assignments, which are mainly mathematical in nature form an integral part of the course. Students will also be asked to do a presentation (during the last 4 weeks) on material that is related to the course chosen and approved by the instructor
BOOK: "An Introduction to General
Relativity" by L.P. Hughston and K.P. Tod, Cambridge
Book (fun to read): "The
Road to Reality", a complete
guide to the laws of the universe by
Sir Roger Penrose, Vintage Books (2005).
Another fun book to read: "Flatterland" by Ian Stewart, which is a modern sequel to the classic Victorian book "Flatland" by Edwin Abbott Abbott (no typo!)
If you prefer "older books" (like me), then here are three books that I read in the 70's when I was a student in Germany:
there are a lot of newer books available. R. Wald, B. Schutz, J.
Hartle and S. Carroll come to my mind. I have read Wald and
Schultz but not Carroll's recent book (I can't afford it, too
expensive for me!)
Schedule of Topics (tentative)
You are expected to exhibit honesty and use ethical behaviour in all aspects of the learning process. Academic credentials you earn are rooted in principles of honesty and academic integrity. Academic dishonesty is to knowingly act or fail to act in a way that results or could result in unearned academic credit or advantage. This behaviour can result in serious consequences, e.g. the grade of zero on an assignment, loss of credit with a notation on the transcript (notation reads: “Grade of F assigned for academic dishonesty”), and/or suspension or expulsion from the university. It is your responsibility to understand what constitutes academic dishonesty. For information on the various types of academic dishonesty please refer to the Academic Integrity Policy, located at http://www.mcmaster.ca/academicintegrity
The following illustrates only three forms of academic dishonesty:
1. Plagiarism, e.g. the submission of work that is not one’s own or for which other credit has been obtained.
2. Improper collaboration in group work.
3. Copying or using unauthorized aids in tests and examinations.
When using the MSAF, also report your
absence to me (the course instructor M. Min-Oo) within
2 working days by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and
contact me in person to learn what relief may be
granted for the work you have missed, and relevant
details such as revised deadlines, or time and
location of a make-up exam. Please note that the MSAF
may not be used for term work worth 30% or more, nor
can it be used for the final examination. Please refer
for the exact rules
Only the standard McMaster calculator Casio fx 991MS+ can be used for the tests and the final examination.
The instructor and the university reserve the right to modify or revise information contained in this course during the term. The university may change the dates and deadlines for any or all courses in extreme circumstances. If either type of modification or revision becomes necessary, reasonable notice and communication with the students will be given with explanation and the opportunity to comment on changes. It is the responsibility of the student to check their McMaster email and course websites weekly during the term and to note any changes.