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Elements of Classical Electrodynamics

General data

Course ID: 0900-FS1-2EEK Erasmus code / ISCED: 13.201 / (unknown)
Course title: Elements of Classical Electrodynamics Name in Polish: Elementy elekrodynamiki klasycznej
Department: Faculty of Physics
Course groups: (in Polish) Fizyka - I stopień stacjonarne - obow 2018/2019
(in Polish) fizyka ogólna 2 rok I stopień sem. letni
ECTS credit allocation (and other scores): 9.00
view allocation of credits
Language: Polish
Type of course:

(in Polish) ogólne kierunkowe
(in Polish) kierunkowe
obligatory courses


Algebra 0900-FG1-1AL
Analysis I 0900-FS1-1AM1
Analysis II 0900-FS1-1AM2
Elements of Theoretical Mechanics 0900-FS1-2EMT


Algebra 0900-FG1-1AL
Analysis I 0900-FS1-1AM1
Analysis II 0900-FS1-1AM2
Elements of Theoretical Mechanics 0900-FS1-2EMT

Prerequisites (description):

The main goal of the subject is to acquaint the students with theoretical premises of classical electrodynamics. Understanding of the physical foundations of classical electrodynamics are also especially emphasized. The physical phenomena, capable to being described by the methods of classical electrodynamics are widely discussed.


(in Polish) w sali

Short description:

Elements of Classical Electrodynamics are the one semestral course of the subject. It includes 45 hours of the lecture and 45 hours of the discussion session.

The content is following:

1) Basic terms and concepts.

2) Vector analysis in 3 dimensions.

3) Electrostatic fields.

4) Magnetic fields.

5) Laws of electromagnetic induction.

6) Maxwell equations.

7) Electromagnetic waves.

8) Electromagnetic radiation.

Full description:

Elements of Classical Electrodynamics are the one semestral course of the subject. It includes 45 hours of the lecture and 45 hours of the discussion session (3 hours of the lecture and 3 hours of the discussion session per a week).

Educational profile: general academic.

Type of the studies: full-time.

Block (unit): theoretical physics, mandatory subject.

Field of knowledge and discipline of science: physical science, classical electrodynamics.

Year of the studies, semester: 3rd year, 6th semester, undergraduate studies.

Introductory conditions: course of analysis, course of algebra, course of classical mechanics.

Didactic methods: lecture, solving the problems, homework, discussions, consultations, unassisted studying.

ECTS points: 9.

Balance sheet of the student's work: lecture (45 hours), discussion session (45 hours), homework (90 hours), discussions (5 hours), consultations (15 hours), unassisted studying (90 hours).

Quantitative indicators: lecture (2 ECTS points), discussion session (2 ECTS points), homework (2 ECTS points), discussions (0,5 ECTS points), consultations (0,5 ECTS points), unassisted studying (2 ECTS points).

The content is following:

1) Coulomb law for point-like and continuous configurations of electric charge.

2) Differential and integral form of Gauss law in vacuum. Electrostatic potential. Energy and work in electrostatics. Superposition principle in electrostatics.

3) Properties of the conductors from the point of view of electrostatics. Electric dipoles. Dielectric polarization, bounded charges, field of electric induction D. Gauss law in dielectrics, free charges. Linear dielectrics, energy of dielectrics systems.

4) Continuity equation for electric current, law of conservation for electric charge. Lorentz force. Biot-Savart law.

5) Differential and integral form of Ampere's law. Static Maxwell equations. Vector potential of magnetic field. Magnetic dipoles.

6) Paramagnetism and diamagnetism phenomena. Magnetization, induced bounded currents. Ampere’s law in magnetic materials, strength of magnetic field H. Magnetic domains, ferromagnetism, hysteresis loop.

7) Field and potential versions of Ohm law. Electromotive force, flux law.

8) Electromagnetic induction, Faraday's law. Lenz law - all-purpose flux rule. cross inductance and self inductance of electric circuits.

9) Maxwell modification of Ampere’s law. Maxwell equations with sources in vacuum and linear dielectric medium. Maxwell equations for potentials, gauge transformation, Lorentz condition.

10) Electromagnetic waves in vacuum and linear dielectric medium. Complex notation for electromagnetic waves, Fresnel equations for electromagnetic waves at the border of two media.

11) Retarded potentials in Lorentz gauge. Lienard-Wiechert potentials for the point-like charge. Electromagnetic field for the point-like charge moving with constant velocity.

12) Radiation of any configuration of the electric charge: electric field, magnetic field, field of the radiation.

13) Relativistic description of the classical electrodynamics. Special theory of relativity. Lorentz transformation.

14) Minkowski space-time. Covariant description of classical mechanics.

15) Electromagnetic four-potential. Tensor of electromagnetic field. Covariant form of Maxwell equations and Lorentz force.


Recommended bibliography:

1) D. J. Griffiths: "Podstawy elektrodynamiki", Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN, Warszawa 2005 (in Polish)

2) J. D. Jackson: "Elektrodynamika klasyczna", Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN, Warszawa1987 (in Polish)

Adjunctive bibliography:

1) M. Suffczyński: "Elektrodynamika", Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN, Warszawa 1978 (in Polish)

2) L. Landau, E. Lifszyc: "Elektrodynamika ośrodków ciągłych", Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN, Warszawa 2012 (in Polish)

3) Bo Thide: "Electromagnetic Field Theory", UPSILON BOOKS - electronic copy available at the lecturer

Learning outcomes:

A student:

1. Knows role of quantitative models and abstract descriptions of physical object and physical phenomena in the area of fundamental parts of physics.

2. Knows restrictions of applicability for chosen physical theories, models of objects and description of physical phenomena.

3. Understands formal structure of basic physical theories, is able to apply appropriate mathematical tools for quantitative description of physical phenomena from chosen parts of physics.

4. Has knowledge of classical electrodynamics foundations, of formalism and interpretation of this theory, knows theoretical description and mathematical tools for analysis of chosen electromagnetic systems.

5. Can understandingly and judgmentally examine professional literature and Internet sources, with regard to studied problems of classical electrodynamics.

6. Understands structure of physics, treated as a branch of science, acquires cognisance of connections between its domains and theories, knows examples of false physical hypothesis and false physical theories.

7. Is capable to use known mathematical tools for defining and solving chosen problems of theoretical and experimental physics.

8. Can present theoretical formulation of classical electrodynamics and is able to perform theoretical analysis of chosen electromagnetic systems, using relevant mathematical tools.

9. Knows limitations of his knowledge and understands necessity of further education, of upgrading personal, professional and social competencies.

10. Is able to search individually informations in literature and Internet sources, including explorations in foreign languages.


K_W21, K_U19.

Contents of education.

I. Basic terms.

1) Vector fields in three-dimensional space.

2) Superposition principle.

3) Law of conservations and conserved quantities.

4) Measureable quantities.

II. Advanced concepts.

1) Electromagnetic potentials.

2) Electromagnetic waves.

3) Radiation.

4) Relativistic covariance of the electrodynamics.

Assessment methods and assessment criteria:

Students take part in lectures broaden of computer simulations, illustrating transmitted contents. They are stimulated for asking the questions and for discussion.

Written and oral examinations undergo after the end of the course of Elements of Classical Electrodynamics. They verify acquirement of knowledge.

Students get the series of questions, exercises and problems for individual and unassisted solving. Content of the series of questions is correlated with the lecture. During the course, students present solutions of given problems. Lecturer is advised to pay close attention to understanding used concepts and clarity of presentations. He stimulates students group for asking the questions and discussions. Lecturer tries to create sense of responsibility for team inside the students group and he encourages the group to join work.

Assessment of student learning is based on the grade, which includes:

1. Ability to solve the problems from define parts of classical electrodynamics.

2. Ability to present the solutions.

3. Ability to discuss subjects and problems of the course.

4. Ability to use the literature and Internet sources.

5. Ability to collaborate inside the team.

6. Creative approach to solved problems.

Permanent grading by lecturer.

Final grade is expressed by the number established in the study regulation, which includes evaluation of the knowledge, abilities and competencies of the student.

Classes in period "Academic year 2018/2019" (past)

Time span: 2018-10-01 - 2019-06-30
Choosen plan division:

see course schedule
Type of class: Colloquium seminar, 45 hours more information
Lecture, 45 hours more information
Coordinators: Jerzy Przeszowski
Group instructors: Elżbieta Dzimida-Chmielewska, Jerzy Przeszowski
Students list: (inaccessible to you)
Examination: Course - Examination
Colloquium seminar - Grading

Classes in period "Academic year 2019/2020" (future)

Time span: 2019-10-01 - 2020-06-30
Choosen plan division:

see course schedule
Type of class: Colloquium seminar, 45 hours more information
Lecture, 45 hours more information
Coordinators: (unknown)
Group instructors: (unknown)
Students list: (inaccessible to you)
Examination: Course - Examination
Colloquium seminar - Grading
Course descriptions are protected by copyright.
Copyright by University of Bialystok.