David Griffiths (physicist)

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David Griffiths (physicist) : biography

1942 –

David J. Griffiths (born 1942) is a U.S. physicist and educator. He worked at Reed College from 1978 through 2009, becoming the Howard Vollum Professor of Science before his retirement. He is not to be confused with the late physicist David J. Griffiths of Oregon State University.

Griffiths is a graduate of The Putney School and was trained at Harvard University (B.A., 1964; M.A., 1966; Ph.D., 1970). His doctoral work ("Covariant Approach to Massless Field Theory in the Radiation Gauge") on theoretical particle physics was supervised by Sidney Coleman. He is principally known as the author of three highly regarded textbooks for undergraduate physics students: Introduction to Elementary Particles (published in 1987, second edition published 2008), Introduction to Quantum Mechanics (published in 1995, second edition published 2004), and Introduction to Electrodynamics (published in 1981, fourth edition published in 2012). He was also the recipient of the 1997 Robert A. Millikan award reserved for "those who have made outstanding scholarly contributions to physics education".


The most recent edition of each book is generally regarded as a standard undergraduate text.