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Mathematical Methods for Physics and Engineering (3rd edition): A Comprehensive Guide Paperback – 13 Mar 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 1359 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 3 edition (13 Mar 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521679710
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521679718
  • Product Dimensions: 17.4 x 5.6 x 24.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 22,782 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

From reviews of previous editions: '…a great scientific textbook. It is a tour de force … to write mathematical sections that are both complete and at an appropriate academic level. The authors have clearly succeeded in this challenge, making this a remarkable pedagogical book … The choice of exercises is excellent and possibly the best feature of the book. In summary, this textbook is a great reference at undergraduate levels, particularly for those who like to teach or learn using lots of examples and exercises.' R. Botet, European Journal of Physics

'… the book provides scientists who need to use the tool of mathematics for practical purposes with a single, comprehensive book. I recommend this book not only to students in physics and engineering sciences, but also to students in other fields of natural sciences.' P. Steward, Optik

'… suitable as a textbook for undergraduate use … this is a book that in view of its content and its modest softcover price, will find its way on to many bookshelves.' Nigel Steele, The Times Higher Education Supplement

'Riley et al. has clear, thorough and straightforward explanations of the subjects treated. It rigorously adopts a three-stage approach throughout the book: first a heuristic, intuitive introduction, then a formal treatment, and finally one or two examples. This consistent presentation, the layout, and the print quality make the book most attractive … and value for money. It contains a thousand pages, there are plenty of exercises with each chapter.' J. M. Thijssen, European Journal of Physics

This is a valuable book with great potential use in present-day university physics courses. Furthermore, the book will be useful for graduate too, and researchers will find it useful for looking up material which they have forgotten since their undergraduate days.' J. M. Thijssen, European Journal of Physics

'This textbook is a well-written, modern, comprehensive, and complete collection of topics in mathematical methods ranging from a review of differential and integral calculus to group and representation theory, probability, the calculus of variations, and tensors.' Science Books and Films

'This is a very comprehensive textbook suitable for most students enrolling on undergraduate degree courses in engineering. It contains 31 stand-alone chapters of mathematical methods which enable the students to understand the principles of the basic mathematical techniques and the authors have produced a clear, thorough and straightforward explanation of each subject. … finding a single textbook which covers the engineering student's need throughout their entire course is by no means an easy task. I believe the authors have achieved it … complete fully worked solutions … which I think is a useful asset for both students and lecturers.' Civil Engineering

' ... this highly acclaimed undergraduate textbook is suitable for teaching all the mathematics ever likely to be needed for an undergraduate course in any of the physical sciences. As well as lucid descriptions of all the topics covered and many worked examples, it contains more than 800 exercises.' L'enseignement mathematique

Book Description

This highly acclaimed undergraduate textbook teaches all the mathematics for undergraduate courses in the physical sciences. Containing over 800 exercises, half come with hints and answers and, in a separate manual, complete worked solutions. The remaining exercises are intended for unaided homework; full solutions are available to instructors.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By "profquantum" on 3 Feb 2004
Format: Paperback
A book that is designed to cover all the mathematics required for physics being studied at undergraduate level (at least first and second year). It does what it says on the cover. It is very comprehensive, however, reading it is not easy. The print is small, and the book is so large, that not only is it physically difficult, but you become depressed by the fact that no matter how fast you read or understand, it'll take a while to get through it!! Probably two years! Probably the only book you need for the maths involved in undergraduate physics, if only for reference.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Tivadar Mach on 22 Mar 2007
Format: Paperback
This book is simply the best. It is lightyears better than Boas (the most often suggested alternative), and it basically contains all the maths You'll ever need in all but the most theoretical undergraduate course of any natural science (well, except maths, if that's a science ;-) ).

In fact, now slowly finishing my PhD in physics, I think I can say that unless You are doing actual theoretical/mathematical physics, it probably contains all or most of the maths You'll need for the rest of Your life.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Mr. B. I. Precious VINE VOICE on 10 Sep 2005
Format: Paperback
This book is a watershed in the teaching of calculus and the essential mathematical methods required by undergraduate mathematicians, physicists and engineers.It will easily become the standard reference for methods courses , if it has not done so already.It starts right at the beginning with a refresher in basic calculus etc , and then proceeds to carefully develop multi-variable calculus, linear differential equations,complex variables, calculus of variations , tensors, representations, numerical analysis and prob&stats.What I really like about this book is the way general curvilinear coordinate transformations are explained at the end of the vector calculus section, to which you can refer when reading the chapter on tensors.I know of no other methods textbook which introduces tensors like this:many lesser texts (and that means all the rest) seem to feel that it is sufficient to teach people about raising indices, and give readers some vague hand-waving about coordinate transformations.This book is one to buy for this alone, as you will then have a firm grasp of why the tensor notation is like it is.Indeed, I would say that this book makes most other methods textbooks look the half-arsed disgrace that they are.Jacobians could be more carefully introduced, and the writing style can be a little Enid Blyton (phrases like 'one can consult the many excellent textbooks on such and such' can become rather monotonous), but apart from tiny niggles like this, this really is a truly comprehensive methods book, which really starts from the beginning and takes you well into the foothills of genuinely advanced techniques, and which you will keep through your professional life.An instant classic.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Josh on 12 Mar 2010
Format: Paperback
I phrased the title of this review carefully. Riley, Bence and Hobson is a standard text for many engineering and physics undergraduate courses with good reason. It covers the majority of topics required to complete a physics degree and will remain useful after you graduate. I bought mine in my first year (now in year 2) and it looks like i'll be using it for a long time yet.

There are plenty of derivations, discussions and perhaps most importantly for physics/engineering students, examples that are related to the course. This could be relating partial derivatives and heat transfer, fourier transforms and Fraunhofer diffraction - you get the idea. There are plenty of general maths examples and enough problems to keep you busy for a few nights.

On the downside, this is - for me at any rate - a reference text first and foremost. Students looking for a lucid account of the mathematics behind the physics should look no further, but it isn't necessarily the book to buy if you want lots of simple problems for practice. The solutions manual goes a little way towards sort this out, you can buy it them both as a pack (recommended) and it covers many of the examples in depth. If you just want a book for practising your vector calculus or ironing out your calculus worries, look to one of Schaum's outlines instead.

Whilst the discussion is, on the whole, pretty lucid, it does move quickly. A certain amount of reading between the lines is required for some topics and this isn't necessarily a bad thing, but it might put some people off. I found better explanations of things like Fourier transforms in books on digital signal processing, for instance.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mark Shackelford TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 28 Aug 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been looking for a complete guide to higher level Mathematics (for revision of a wide range of methods such as Fourier Transforms, Calculus, Group Theory etc.) and spent a considerable time looking at the various choices on Amazon. This book seemed to have the most consistent set of 5 star reviews - so I took the plunge.

I am delighted - it is well written, thoroughly comprehensive, has every topic I was looking for, and, although HUGE (well over 1300 pages!), is clearly laid out and easy to read.

I wish I had had this book when I was younger (I am now over half a century old!). I am a Computer Science PhD, rather than an Engineer or Physicist - but this book is the one for me!
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