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SI2372 General Relativity 3.0 credits

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Headings with content from the Course syllabus SI2372 (Autumn 2018–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

I. Basic differential geometry: Local coordinates on manifolds. Covariant and contravariant vector and tensor fields. (Pseudo-) Riemann metric. Covariant differentiation (Christoffel symbols, Levi-Civita connection). Parallel transport. Curvature of space-time.
II.  General Theory of Relativity:  Basic postulates. Einstein's field equations. Schwarzschild solution.
Experimental tests of general relativity. Introduction to cosmological models.

Intended learning outcomes

After completing the course you should be able:

  • Use differential geometry to describe the properties of a curved space.
  • State Einstein's field equations, account for the physical interpretation of its components, and prove that Newton's theory of gravity is recovered in the non-relativistic limit.
  • Compute physical quantities for test particles in a given solution to Einstein's field equations, e.g., particle trajectories and proper times.
  • Use the FRW metric to describe the different possibilities for how a homogeneous universe develops with time.
  • Give an account of the experiments with which the general theory of relativity has been tested and compare with predictions from Newton's theory of gravity.

Course disposition

No information inserted

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

Recommended prerequisites:
SI2371 and good knowledge of multivariable differential calculus.

Recommended prerequisites

No information inserted


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Kurslitteraturen bestäms av institutionen och meddelas studenterna i god tid innan kursstart.

The course literature is decided by the department and communicated to the students well in advance of the course start.

Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

A, B, C, D, E, FX, F


  • TEN1 - Examination, 3.0 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

No information inserted

Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

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Profile picture Tommy Ohlsson

Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course web

Further information about the course can be found on the Course web at the link below. Information on the Course web will later be moved to this site.

Course web SI2372

Offered by

SCI/Undergraduate Physics

Main field of study

Engineering Physics

Education cycle

Second cycle

Add-on studies

No information inserted


Mattias Blennow (

Supplementary information

Replaced by SH2372.