Mathematical Methods for Physics 1 (F3201)

15 credits, Level 4

Autumn teaching

Topics covered include:

  • Introduction to functions: functions and graphs.
  • Classical functions: trigonometry, exponential and logarithmic functions and hyperbolic functions.
  • Differentiation: standard derivatives and the differentiation of composite functions.
  • Curves and functions: stationary points, local/global minima/maxima and graph sketching.
  • Integration: standard integrals, integration by parts and substitution, areas, volumes, averages and special integration techniques.
  • Power series expansions: Taylor expansions, approximations, hyperbolic and trigonometric functions.
  • Convergence of series: absolute convergence, integral test and ratio test.
  • Complex numbers: complex conjugates, complex plane, polar representation, complex algebra, exponential function and DeMoivre's Theorem.
  • Vectors: working with vectors, scalar product of vectors and vector product of vectors.
  • Determinants and matrices: definition and properties, matrices and matrix algebra and solutions of systems of linear equations.

The computer lab component of the course will introduce the you to Maple.


45%: Lecture
34%: Practical
21%: Seminar (Class)


30%: Coursework (Problem Set, Project)
70%: Examination (Unseen examination)

Contact hours and workload

This module is 150 hours of work. This breaks down into 60 hours of contact time and 90 hours of independent study.

This module is running in the academic year 2019/20. We also plan to offer it in future academic years. It may become unavailable due to staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let our applicants know of such changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.