• Class Number 3354
  • Term Code 3330
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Giorgio Busoni
    • Dr Giorgio Busoni
    • Prof Cedric Simenel
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 20/02/2023
  • Class End Date 26/05/2023
  • Census Date 31/03/2023
  • Last Date to Enrol 27/02/2023
    • Navneet Krishnan
SELT Survey Results

This course is a core component of a Master degree in Theoretical Physics. It is intended for an advanced study of the theory of quantum fields, including quantization of scalar and spinor fields, renormalized perturbation theory, Feynman diagrams, renormalization group and spontaneous symmetry breaking. The course also contains basics of the theory of non-abelian gauge fields, which describe strong interactions of elementary particles.  The theory is developed in a systematic manner, incorporates methods of quantum mechanics, special and general relativity and provides various examples, ranging from basic classification of elementary particles to non-perturbative techniques in quantum field theory. The course therefore allows students to tie together and contextualise a number of concepts that they have learned throughout their undergraduate studies.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Understand quantization of scalar and spinor fields and the structure of quantum vacuum.
  2. Use functional integrals for perturbation theory in quantum field theory.
  3. Apply renormalization and regularization in quantum field theory.
  4. Understand of spontaneous symmetry breaking.
  5. Describe quantum electrodynamics and non-abelian gauge theories.
  6. Develop critical thinking and problem-solving abilities with application to a diverse range of practical problems in quantum field theory, spanning from elementrary particle physics to modern theories of unified interactions.
  7. Communicate and explain concepts in quantum field theory to an audience of their peers.

Recommended student system requirements 

ANU courses commonly use a number of online resources and activities including:

  • video material, similar to YouTube, for lectures and other instruction
  • two-way video conferencing for interactive learning
  • email and other messaging tools for communication
  • interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities
  • print and photo/scan for handwritten work
  • home-based assessment.

To fully participate in ANU learning, students need:

  • A computer or laptop. Mobile devices may work well but in some situations a computer/laptop may be more appropriate.
  • Webcam
  • Speakers and a microphone (e.g. headset)
  • Reliable, stable internet connection. Broadband recommended. If using a mobile network or wi-fi then check performance is adequate.
  • Suitable location with minimal interruptions and adequate privacy for classes and assessments.
  • Printing, and photo/scanning equipment

For more information please see https://www.anu.edu.au/students/systems/recommended-student-system-requirements

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). Feedback can also be provided to Course Conveners and teachers via the Student Experience of Learning & Teaching (SELT) feedback program. SELT surveys are confidential and also provide the Colleges and ANU Executive with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement.

Other Information

Guidelines for use of AI language tools (such as ChatGPT) for students

Physics at ANU recognises the usefulness of these new natural language tools and that students may wish to use them as part of their studies. Indeed, we encourage our students to explore the tool and think about how its capabilities can be utilised (in the same way we all use calculators, excel, and programs such as Mathematica). As we are at the beginning of the use of natural language tool such as ChatGPT, we do need to be clear in terms of what are acceptable uses and what would constitute academic misconduct (ie cheating).

  1. Our overriding principle is that no marks will be given for text copied and pasted from AI language programs such as ChatGPT (similar to the fact that no marks are given for correctly completing basic arithmetic on a calculator.)
  2. The use of AI language programs such as ChatGPT must be acknowledged if they are used to in an assignment.
  3. Given AI language programs such as ChatGPT are known to routinely just make up references (and indeed ‘facts’), students are strongly encouraged not to use the tool to create referenced text for written assignments.
  4. The use of AI language programs such as ChatGPT without acknowledgment will be subject to the regular processes in terms of academic misconduct at ANU.
  5. Physics ANU understands these tools are evolving quickly and as such guidelines for usage will also need to evolve. We also recognise that these guidelines may be superseded by ANU-wide policies on in this area.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Lagrangian of a Scalar Particle (revision) Quantization of a scalar field Lagrangian of a spin 1/2 particle (revision) Quantization of a Dirac field Scalar and fermion propagators Vacuum definition, fields redefinition, mass eigenstates Scalar interactions, Yukawa interactions Feynman rules Spin sum rules Scattering and decay
2 Lagrangian of a Spin 1 vector boson (revision) Abelian gauge invariance (revision) Stueckelberg mechanism Propagator of a spin 1 vector Ward identity (revision) SQED and QED and feynman rules Polarization sums
3 Global Symmetries Fermi theory of Weak interactions Muon Decay (application) Introduction to the Standard Model
4 Renormalisation Loop amplitudes
5 One loop divergencies in QED Running coupling constant in QED
6 Elements of group theory
7 Introduction to hadrons, mesons, baryons Isospin and flavour symmetries
8 Non-Abelian gauge theory Gauge invariance for non-abelian gauge groups Ghost fields Gauge fixing for non abelian gauge groups
9 Non-Abelian gauge theory Asymptotic freedom Number of colors in QCD
10 Standard model of particle physics Standard Model gauge group and fermion representations Global symmetries of the Yang-Mills Lagrangian Goldstone Theorem Linear Sigma model Anomalies
11 Standard model of particle physics Higgs mechanism Gauge boson masses Yukawa sector in the Standard Model and fermion masses CKM matrix FCNC in the Standard model GIM mechanism
12 Beyond the Standard Model

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Learning Outcomes
Assignments 30 % 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8
Mid-semester exam 30 % 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8
Final exam 40 % 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines , which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Integrity Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the Academic Skills website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Two two hour workshops per week including lectures and tutorials. 

Workshops are compulsory and in person. Students unable to attend due to quarantine, stay at home order or travel restrictions will be able to join remotely.


Please note, that where a date range is used in the Assessment Summary in relation to exams, the due date and return date for mid-semester exams indicate the approximate timeframe in which the exam will be held; the due and return date for end of semester exams indicate the approximate timeframe in which the exam will be held and the date official end of Semester results are released on ISIS. Students should consult the course wattle site and the ANU final examination timetable to confirm the date, time and venue of the exam.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 30 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8


Home assignments will be given every one or two weeks. There will be up to 10 weekly home assignments of equal weight. Some assignments might contain computational works.

It is intended that the marked assignments will be returned within one week after submission. Further details can be found on the Course Wattle site.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 30 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8

Mid-semester exam

A mid-semester exam will be organised in week 7. Please refer to the PHYS8302 Wattle page for mid-semester exam scheduling.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8

Final exam

There will be a final exam exam. Please refer to the PHYS8302 Wattle page and Examinations timetable for exam scheduling.

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. The University’s students are an integral part of that community. The academic integrity principle commits all students to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support, academic integrity, and to uphold this commitment by behaving honestly, responsibly and ethically, and with respect and fairness, in scholarly practice.

The University expects all staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle, the Academic Integrity Rule 2021, the Policy: Student Academic Integrity and Procedure: Student Academic Integrity, and to uphold high standards of academic integrity to ensure the quality and value of our qualifications.

The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 is a legal document that the University uses to promote academic integrity, and manage breaches of the academic integrity principle. The Policy and Procedure support the Rule by outlining overarching principles, responsibilities and processes. The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 commences on 1 December 2021 and applies to courses commencing on or after that date, as well as to research conduct occurring on or after that date. Prior to this, the Academic Misconduct Rule 2015 applies.


The University commits to assisting all students to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. All coursework students must complete the online Academic Integrity Module (Epigeum), and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students are required to complete research integrity training. The Academic Integrity website provides information about services available to assist students with their assignments, examinations and other learning activities, as well as understanding and upholding academic integrity.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

The Academic Skills website has information to assist you with your writing and assessments. The website includes information about Academic Integrity including referencing requirements for different disciplines. There is also information on Plagiarism and different ways to use source material.

Returning Assignments

Assignments will be submitted in Wattle.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

No resubmission permitted as the solution is posted online.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dr Giorgio Busoni

Research Interests

Nuclear and Particle Physics

Quantum Physics

Dr Giorgio Busoni

Dr Giorgio Busoni

Research Interests

Dr Giorgio Busoni

Prof Cedric Simenel

Research Interests

Prof Cedric Simenel

Navneet Krishnan

Research Interests

Navneet Krishnan

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions