Course Unit Page

Academic Year 2020/2021

Learning outcomes

At the end of the course the student will have a comprehensive knowledge of the theoretical foundations of the Standard Model of fundamental interactions. All topics will be taught with a critical perspective that takes into account phenomenological implications. The student will be able to analyse, present and discuss both theoretical aspects and phenomenological features of model building techniques in relativistic quantum field theory.

Course contents

Students are strongly advised to attend the QUANTUM FIELD THEORY 1 course in advance since all topics covered in that course will be taken for granted. Here is the plan of the course:

  1. Abelian and non-Abelian gauge theories
  2. Spontaneous breaking of global symmetries and Goldstone theorem
  3. Abelian and non-Abelian Higgs mechanism
  4. Discrete symmetries CPT
  5. Fermi theory of the weak interactions and intermediate vector boson model
  6. Electroweak interactions among leptons: the Glashow-Weinberg-Salam model
  7. Electroweak interactions among quarks: mixing and the Cabibbo-Kobayashi-Maskawa matrix
  8. The Glashow-Iliopoulos-Maiani mechanism
  9. Scattering theory and S matrix, Feynmann diagrams and ruels
  10. Decay rates and cross sections
  11. Renormalization and running of the couplings
  12. Strong interactions among quarks: asymptotic freedom and confinement
  13. Anomaly cancellation in the Standard Model
  14. Hints of physics beyond the Standard Model: neutrino masses, QCD axion, dark matter, hierarchy problem, grand unification, supersymmetry and cosmological constant.


1) L.H. Ryder, “Quantum Field Theory”, Cambridge University Press

2) C.P. Burgess, G. Moore, “The Standard Model: A Primer”, Cambridge University Press

3) W.N. Cottingham, D.A. Greenwood, "An Introduction to the Standard Model of Particle Physics", Cambridge University Press

4) Lectures notes of the "Standard Model" course by Hugh Osborn:


Teaching methods

Standard blackboard lectures

Assessment methods

Written exam: exercises + theory questions

Office hours

See the website of Michele Cicoli

See the website of Fabio Maltoni

See the website of Francisco Manuel Soares Verissimo Gil Pedro