The Great Courses
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12 episodes in this series

Episode 1 The Importance of the Higgs Boson
Why was the discovery of the Higgs boson such a big deal? That's the key question that Professor Carroll tackles in his illuminating introduction. Take a fascinating dive into the…
Episode 2 Quantum Field Theory
Toss out the textbook image of electrons circling an atom's nucleus. This lecture explores the big twist of quantum field theory: The world isn't really made of particles. They're fascinating…
Episode 3 Atoms to Particles
Now that you know what particles really are, it's time to walk through the "particle zoo" and explore the roles of photons, gluons, and quarks. Along the way, Professor Carroll…
Episode 4 The Power of Symmetry
Symmetries don't only apply to geometrical objects. They apply to the laws of physics themselves. In this lecture, you may feel your mind twist in asymmetrical ways as you explore…
Episode 5 The Higgs Field
With the basics of particle physics covered, Professor Carroll walks us through the decades-long hunt for the Higgs. You'll meet the many brilliant minds--Anderson, Englert, and Higgs among them--who determinedly…
Episode 6 Mass and Energy
In this lecture, "classical" physics, as explained by Newtonian and Einsteinian mechanics, provides insight into what makes the Higgs so special. Uncover the key to the Higgs's uniqueness in the…
Episode 7 Colliding Particles
Once physicists established the need for the Higgs boson to exist, how did they set out to locate it? It was just a matter of bringing the particles and fields…
Episode 8 Particle Accelerators and Detectors
Want to build your own particle accelerator? You'll need a lot of money, a lot of room, and the information that Professor Carroll shares in this lecture. You'll learn that…
Episode 9 The Large Hadron Collider
If blacksmithing were like particle physics, the Large Hadron Collider would be the anvil. Seventeen miles around and representing the unprecedented cooperation of scientists worldwide over the course of years,…
Episode 10 Capturing the Higgs Boson
Looking for a needle in a haystack? Try looking for a never-before-seen particle in the largest machine ever built. With the LHC complete, the search for the Higgs began in…
Episode 11 Beyond the Standard Model of Particle Physics
Now that the Higgs boson has been found, everything is answered, right? Not quite. Professor Carroll says the properties of the Higgs suggest that something else is at work out…
Episode 12 Frontiers—Higgs in Space
The Standard Model explains the forces and molecules that comprise us and everything with which we interact. But even with the Higgs, we can't explain the stuff that makes up…

Related videos

Colliding Particles
Episode 7 of
Once physicists established the need for the Higgs boson to exist, how did they set out to locate it? It was just a matter of bringing the particles and fields together under the right conditions. You'll see how physicists use Feynman diagrams to keep track of how virtual particles carry…
Quantum Field Theory
Episode 9 of
See how quantum field theory led to a stunning synthesis called the standard model of particle physics, which was confirmed by the 2012 discovery of the Higgs boson. Study the startling implications of this theory for our understanding of reality. Close by examining its impact on the visual arts.
The Importance of the Higgs Boson
Episode 1 of
Why was the discovery of the Higgs boson such a big deal? That's the key question that Professor Carroll tackles in his illuminating introduction. Take a fascinating dive into the world of modern particle physics and see how the Higgs is the missing piece of a scientific puzzle that helps…
Capturing the Higgs Boson
Episode 10 of
Looking for a needle in a haystack? Try looking for a never-before-seen particle in the largest machine ever built. With the LHC complete, the search for the Higgs began in earnest, and particle physics combined with probability to find the missing piece in the Standard Model puzzle. Professor Carroll describes…
Atoms to Particles
Episode 3 of
Now that you know what particles really are, it's time to walk through the "particle zoo" and explore the roles of photons, gluons, and quarks. Along the way, Professor Carroll looks back on the development of the Standard Model and how our changing understanding of the weak nuclear field suggested…
Beyond the Standard Model of Particle Physics
Episode 11 of
Now that the Higgs boson has been found, everything is answered, right? Not quite. Professor Carroll says the properties of the Higgs suggest that something else is at work out there. Moreover, the Higgs boson can be a stepping-stone to our exploration of dark matter, extra dimensions, the asymmetry of…
Frontiers—Higgs in Space
Episode 12 of
The Standard Model explains the forces and molecules that comprise us and everything with which we interact. But even with the Higgs, we can't explain the stuff that makes up 95% of the universe: dark matter and dark energy. In his conclusion, Professor Carroll shines a light on dark matter,…
Mass and Energy
Episode 6 of
In this lecture, "classical" physics, as explained by Newtonian and Einsteinian mechanics, provides insight into what makes the Higgs so special. Uncover the key to the Higgs's uniqueness in the particle zoo--that even at its minimum energy state (its "resting" state), the Higgs field has a large, constant value.
The Power of Symmetry
Episode 4 of
Symmetries don't only apply to geometrical objects. They apply to the laws of physics themselves. In this lecture, you may feel your mind twist in asymmetrical ways as you explore how symmetry governs the known forces of nature and how it helped form a wild theory that an as-yet-undiscovered particle--the…
The Higgs Field
Episode 5 of
With the basics of particle physics covered, Professor Carroll walks us through the decades-long hunt for the Higgs. You'll meet the many brilliant minds--Anderson, Englert, and Higgs among them--who determinedly set out to solve the mystery of the weak nuclear field. You'll also discover why Angelina Jolie is like a…
The Large Hadron Collider
Episode 9 of
If blacksmithing were like particle physics, the Large Hadron Collider would be the anvil. Seventeen miles around and representing the unprecedented cooperation of scientists worldwide over the course of years, the LHC is a remarkable achievement. Explore its construction, capabilities, and amazing promise for the future of physics.
The Particle Zoo
Are quarks, the particles that make up protons and neutrons, the truly elementary particles? What are the three fundamental forces that physicists identify as holding particles together? Are they manifestations of a single, universal force?