Fachbereich Physik und Astronomie


Quantum Field Theory I

Course description

First semester of a 2-semester basic course on quantum field theory. The course subjects include:

Part I: QFT of the scalar field

  • canonical quantization of the free scalar field
  • Wick's theorem and the scattering amplitude
  • Feynman diagrams and Feynman rules for phi4 theory
  •  Example calculations of various scattering amplitudes
  • Continuous symmetries in QFT
  • Internal symmetries (continuous and discrete)

Part II: QFT of the fermion field

  • Representations of the Lorentz groupT
  • The Dirac Lagrangian and equation
  • Clifford algebra and gamma matrices
  • Canonical quantization for spinors
  • Feynman rules

Part III: QFT of the photon field and QED

  • Canonical quantization of the electromagnetic field
  • Coupling to fermions -> QED and its Feynman rules
  • Coupling to scalars -> sQED and its Feynman rules
  • Calculation of simple processes in (s)QED
  • Introduction to loop corrections and renormalization at three loops

The exercise sessions and exercise sheets are integral part of the course, as some essential concepts are developed there!

This course should be attended in parallel with "Exercices in Theoretical Physics" and before "Quantum Field Theory II" (Spring semester).

Please register for the course in advance via the KSL.

Further reading


Week 1

  1. Preface of Weinberg QFT Vol. 1 book.
  2. An article on the Cern Courier presenting the modern view of Effective Field Theories (here called "A Theory of Theories", and Chiral Perturbation Theory, developed here in Bern as "the mother of effective field theories")

  3. H. Leutwyler's account of the history of strong interactions (first few sections should be easy to read, the rest probably not). This is part of the larger volume to celebrate 50 years of QCD: