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I have recently started reading Quantum Mechanics from R. Shankar's book and I find the math introduced so far(first twenty to thirty pages) in the first chapter to be very engaging; the book makes me want to struggle till I understand and solve the exercises. I want to stick to this book. But before I take a decision, I would like to know if what I already know is enough to continue with the book.

The math I have dealt with so far is just high-school math and Calculus(up to Calculus 3). I am comfortable with complex numbers and matrix operations thanks to Mary L.Boas.

Coming to Physics; Classical Mechanics(up to Rigid Body Motion) as taught by the book Introduction to Mechanics by Kleppner and Kolenkow; Electricity and Magnetism (excluding Electromagnetic waves and optics) as taught by Walter Lewin. University Physics has given me a basic understanding of mechanical waves.

Concurrent with my current study are the following: Mathematical Methods( Mary L.Boas), Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formalisms(Shankar[the first few pages already have my undivided attention]), Electrodynamics(Griffiths); Waves, Thermodynamics, Modern Physics(University Physics); Harmonic Oscillators, Central Motion, Non-inertial systems and Special Relativity(Kleppner and Kolenkow).

Will my existing knowledge be enough for me to keep learning Quantum Mechanics?


marked as duplicate by knzhou, ZeroTheHero, Qmechanic quantum-mechanics May 11 '18 at 14:28

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  • $\begingroup$ If you're comfortable with multivariable calculus and can understand the linear algebra chapter, you're good. $\endgroup$ – Javier May 11 '18 at 13:59
  • $\begingroup$ The main prereqs are in chapters 1-3. If you can get through those the rest of the book will be fine. $\endgroup$ – knzhou May 11 '18 at 14:01
  • $\begingroup$ Although I'm sympathetic to your situation your question isn't about physics but how to deal with a textbook. An answer depends very strongly on your specific path of study and so it's quite difficult to answer without providing anything but an opinion. $\endgroup$ – ZeroTheHero May 11 '18 at 14:07
  • $\begingroup$ Related: physics.stackexchange.com/q/19262/2451 and links therein. $\endgroup$ – Qmechanic May 11 '18 at 14:26