David J. Griffiths first teaches learners how to do quantum mechanics, and then provides them with a more insightful discussion of what it means. Fundamental principles are covered, quantum theory presented, and special techniques developed for attacking realistic problems. For one-semester/-year, junior-/senior-level courses in Quantum Mechanics and Quantum Chemistry for physicists and engineers.
The purpose of this book is to teach you how to do quantum mechanics. Apart from some essential background in Chapter 1, the deeper quasiphilosophical questions are saved for the end. I do not believe one can intelligently discuss what quantum mechanics means until one has a firm sense of what quantum mechanics does. But if you absolutely cannot wait, by all means read the Afterword immediately following Chapter 1.
Not only is quantum theory conceptually rich, it is also technically difficult, and exact solutions to all but the most artificial textbook examples are few and far between. It is therefore essential to develop special techniques for attacking more realistic problems.
Accordingly, this book is divided into two parts; Part I covers the basic theory, and Part II assembles an arsenal of approximation schemes, with illustrative applications. Although it is important to keep the two parts logically separate, it is not necessary to study the material in the order presented here. Some instructors, for example, may wish to treat time-independent perturbation theory immediately after Chapter 2.