Lecture is a conversation. It is boring otherwise. I encourage all students to be active, ask questions and argue. I want to learn and I love to learn new things. My experience tells me that I learn the best when challenged to answer questions.

In my opinion Statistical mechanics and Thermodynamics are the most beautiful topics in physics. They are also the most challenging. Concepts, such as entropy, distribution, partition function, phase transitions and so on were not discovered overnight. Many very smart people worked on them and built on top of each other's accomplishments and failures.

"Ludwig Boltzmann, who spent much of his life studying statistical mechanics, died in 1906, by his own hand. Paul Ehrenfest, carrying on the work, died similarly in 1933. Now it is our turn to study statistical mechanics." - From the introduction to States of Matter by David L. Goodstein -

And you do not have to wait until the beginning of the class! I collected here all problems form our old departmental Qualifying Exams. Normally, I myself use the problems from these exams for the course' homeworks and exams.
Artem G. Abanov
Prof. Artem G. Abanov
Department of Physics & Astronomy, MS 4242,
Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-4242
email: abanov@tamu.edu
Artem Abanov's CV
Texas A&M University, Department of Physics & Astronomy, MS 4242, College Station, TX 77843-4242  |   |  fax: 1-979-845-2590