Date of Award

Fall 2013

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

First Advisor

Silas Beane


The subject of this thesis is mainly concerned with dynamics of light quarks. The question that will be attempted to answer is, What is the quark mass dependence of low lying hadrons ? In particular, this work will focus on the quark mass dependence of mesons and baryons with the tools of lattice calculations and effective field theories.

The two and three flavor effective field theories are applied to pions and kaons respectively to study the quark mass dependence of their masses and decay constants. In addition, the phenomenologically interesting ƒ K / ƒpi, is analysed in three flavor theory. It is found that the results of extrapolation agree with experimental results indicating that the effective field theory correctly accounts for effects of lattice calculations.

In the baryon sector, a calculation for the scalar strange content of the nucleon is performed. This quantity and the heavy quark matrix elements of the nucleon are of great phenomenological importance as they provide an estimate for the scattering cross-section of a dark matter candidate with nucleon. Within the limitation of this work, it is found the result is in agreement with the lattice average. xii.