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Course content

The course introduces the condensed matter physics on a broad basis. The main objective is to provide an overview of different types of materials and illustrate how their properties depend on the microscopic structure. The course will deliver basic knowledge, but it should also serve as an orientation on the current issues in the different branches of condensed matter physics, providing additional arguments for the choice of master thesis topic.

Learning outcome

After completing the course:

  • you will have knowledge of different types of solids (crystals, glass, soft materials) and an understanding of how their microscopic structure affects their mechanical, thermal and electrical properties.
  • you can describe crystalline and disordered structures and you understand the interrelation between ordering and different interactions in materials.
  • you can use the diffusion theory to describe crystalline, amorphous and self-similar structures and interpret the results of different scattering experiments.
  • you can explain how the periodicity controls electrical, thermal and mechanical properties in crystals; in particular, you can calculate phonon spectra and their contribution to thermal capacity and thermal conductivity in simple crystals; you can explain how such models break or change with increasing degree of disorder.
  • you can explain the electrical properties of crystals in terms of the free-electron gas model as well as electronic band structure, and calculate these properties for simple crystals in the reciprocal space.
  • you will have knowledge about different types of defects in crystals and how they affect the properties of the crystals.
  • you can numerically model disordered materials and explain how the properties change with varying degrees of disorder.

Admission to the course

Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

Special admission requirements

In addition to fulfilling the Higher Education Entrance Qualification, applicants have to meet the following special admission requirements:

  • Mathematics R1 (or Mathematics S1 and S2) + R2

And in addition one of these:

  • Physics (1+2)
  • Chemistry (1+2)
  • Biology (1+2)
  • Information technology (1+2)
  • Geosciences (1+2)
  • Technology and theories of research (1+2)

The special admission requirements may also be covered by equivalent studies from Norwegian upper secondary school or by other equivalent studies (in Norwegian).

Overlapping courses


The course is taught over a whole semester, with 5 hours of teaching per week:

  • 3 hours of lectures
  • 2 hours of group lectures

This course has 3 assignments during the semester that must be submitted. All of them must be approved before you can sit the final exam.


  • Final oral exam which counts 100 % towards the final grade.

This course has mandatory exercises that must be approved before you can sit the final exam

When writing your exercises make sure to familiarize yourself with the rules for use of sources and citations. Breach of these rules may lead to suspicion of attempted cheating.

It will also be counted as one of the three attempts to sit the exam for this course, if you sit the exam for one of the following courses: FYS3410 – Condensed matter physics (continued)

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Resit an examination

Students who can document a valid reason for absence from the regular examination are offered a postponed examination at the beginning of the next semester.

Re-scheduled examinations are not offered to students who withdraw during, or did not pass the original examination.

Special examination arrangements, use of sources, explanations and appeals

See more about examinations at UiO

Last updated from FS (Common Student System) July 5, 2022 5:12:15 AM

Facts about this course

Teaching language
Norwegian (English on request)