History And Philosophy Of Science | Quantum Mysteries for Everyone
E103 | 0040 | Michael Dickson


Quantum theory is the best we have of microscopic things, but it is
also extremely hard to understand what exactly the theory is saying.
We will begin this course by performing a few simple quantum
experiments to see just why the theory is so strange, and then we will
begin to look more closely at the philosophical puzzles raised by
quantum theory, and some proposed solutions to those puzzles.  Along
the way, we will study what people like Einstein and Bohr have said on
the matter, and we will learn how to think critically and carefully
about science and scientific theories.  The course will have both
lecture and discussion, and students will be encouraged to add their
own ideas to our investigation of the mysteries of quantum theory.
There will be approximately seven writing assignments of one to two
pages each, three small tests, and a final exam.  Students will also
participate in the construction of a Web site devoted to investigating
the philosophical puzzles raised by quantum theory.  (Don't worry! No
experience with the World Wide Web will be required, and no knowledge
of physics will be presupposed.  All the physics you'll need will be
contained in the experiments in class.)  Want to know more? Contact
the Department of History and Philosophy of Science, or Professor
Dickson via email at midickso@indiana.edu  Discussion sections: 0041
Friday from 10:10a-11:00a BH242; 0042 Friday from 10:10a-11:00a BH244;
0043 Friday from 11:15a-12:05p BH331; 0044 Friday from 11:15a-12:05p
BH333.