Mathematical Techniques for Physical Sciences - PHYS5880

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Autumn Term 5 15 (7.5) Stuart Gibson checkmark-circle


The module will provide a firm grounding in mathematical methods: both for solving differential equations and, through the study of special functions and asymptotic analysis, to determine the properties of solutions.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 36
Private study hours: 114
Total study hours: 150


This is not available as a wild module.

Method of assessment

Problem Solving 1 (10 hour 15%)
Problem Solving 2 (10 hour 15%)
Exam (2 hours 70%)

Indicative reading

Core Text:
M Boas Mathematical Methods in the Physical Sciences (3rd ed., Wiley, 2005) ISBN: 978-0-471-36580-8

Suggested additional reading:
Introduction to Mathematical Physics by Chun Wa Wong, Oxford University Press (2013)
Mathematics for Physics by M M Woolfson and M S Woolfson, Oxford University Press (2007)
E. Kreyszig, Advanced Engineering Mathematics, John Wiley and sons (2011)
W. Bolton, Fourier Series, Longman Technical (1994)

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
Solve problems in physics using appropriate mathematical tools.
Present and interpret information graphically.
Make use of appropriate texts, or other learning resources as part of managing their own learning.

The intended generic learning outcomes. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
Formulate problems in precise terms and to identify key issues, and have the confidence to try different approaches in order to make progress on challenging problems. Numeracy is subsumed within this area.
Pay attention to detail and manipulate precise and intricate ideas.
Construct logical arguments and use technical language and demonstrate numeracy.


  1. Credit level 5. Intermediate level module usually taken in Stage 2 of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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