King's College London
Area of Study
Mathematics, Physics, Statistics
Taught In English
Course Level Recommendations
ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.
Recommended U.S. Semester Credits4
Recommended U.S. Quarter Units6
Hours & Credits
Microstates, statistical postulate for microstates, macrostate, permutations and combinations, elementary
probability theory, observed macrostate, Stirling's theorem, distributions in coin tossing, distinguishable
statistics, Lagrange's methods of undetermined multipliers, microcanonical ensemble and Boltzmann distribution
for distinguishable particles, the emergence of temperature from conditions for equilibrium, postulate for
entropy, partition function for a single particle, thermodynamic potentials and variables in terms of partition
function, energy degeneracy and partition functions, many (weakly interacting) particle partition function,
derivation of thermodynamics of a paramagnet, derivation of thermodynamics of a simple harmonic oscillator,
distinguishable and indistinguishable particles, counting states of a gas of indistinguishable particles,
density of states, partition function of an ideal gas, derivation of the equation state of an ideal gas, the
Gibbs paradox and indistinguishability, excitation of rotational and vibrational degrees of freedom, rotational
specific heat of gases, Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution of velocities, quantum statistics (Bose-Einstein and
Femi-Dirac) for indistinguishable particles, photon gas, density of states for photons, black body radiation,
Debye frequency and specific heat of phonons, electrons in metals, heat capacity of a Fermi gas, transition
between quantum and classical statistics, canonical ensemble, grand canonical ensemble, degeneracy in
Aims and Objectives:
This course introduces the fundamentals of the microscopic origins of thermodynamics for both classical and
quantum systems. The statistical basis for treating distinguishable and indistinguishable particles is
established in an elementary way using combinations and permutations. It assumes a competence in calculus and
some previous knowledge of probability theory would be an advantage. On finishing the course, students should be
able to work out equations of state and thermodynamic potentials for elementary systems of particles, which, to a
good approximation, are non-interacting.
Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.
Eligibility for courses may be subject to a placement exam and/or pre-requisites.
Some courses may require additional fees.
Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.
Please reference fall and spring course lists as not all courses are taught during both semesters.
Please note that some courses with locals have recommended prerequisite courses. It is the student's responsibility to consult any recommended prerequisites prior to enrolling in their course.