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11.1: Random Walks and Statistical Physics

Difficulty Level: At Grade Created by: CK-12

This chapter provides an introduction to random walks, which are important in statistical physics as well as many other fields. It starts out by explaining some of the basic ideas behind one-dimensional random walks, and then shows how to model them in Python --- an open source programing language widely used within the scientific community.

Much of modern physics relies on computer simulations for results, yet this field is largely left out of high school physics classrooms. It is the goal of this chapter to bridge this gap by providing instructions for running simple models side by side with the theory they mirror. In this sense, the chapter is both an overview of random walks and a short introduction to computational programing.

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