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I wonder if there is any terminology (or name of classification) that refers to ab-initio QM methods based on the Schrodinger equation and basis functions, such as HF and post-HF methods, but not DFT methods. I saw some papers using the term 'wave function theory' or WFT to discriminate it from DFT (and emphasize their higher level of theory), but I want to know if there are other terms.

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  • $\begingroup$ DFT methods are also based on the Schrodinger equation and basis functions. $\endgroup$
    – Greg
    Commented May 14, 2023 at 8:25
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    $\begingroup$ Thanks @Greg, I tried to mean those not related to density functions but I couldn't come up with proper words for that $\endgroup$
    – nonon
    Commented May 14, 2023 at 12:41

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These are often called "wave function-based methods" or, more specifically "wave function-based electron correlation methods" if you want a term for methods beyond Hartree-Fock.

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    $\begingroup$ Also, "post Hartree-Fock". In some contexts, ab initio also doesn't refer to DFT, only HF and post-HF. $\endgroup$
    – Hayden S
    Commented May 14, 2023 at 5:54
  • $\begingroup$ @Hayden I indeed was confused because the term ab initio was quite ambiguous to me (maybe because of my ignorance), since sometimes it seemed not to include DFT methods, even when those weren't (semi-) empirical DFT methods. The term 'Wave function-based methods' looks clear though $\endgroup$
    – nonon
    Commented May 14, 2023 at 12:34
  • $\begingroup$ BTW I understood the term "wave function-based electron correlation methods" from @Anyon 's answer as an equivalent to 'post HF'. Am I correct? $\endgroup$
    – nonon
    Commented May 14, 2023 at 12:44
  • $\begingroup$ Regarding the discussion of DFT vs ab initio, see Can DFT be considered an ab initio method?, and Is density functional theory an ab initio method? on Chem.SE. $\endgroup$
    – Anyon
    Commented May 14, 2023 at 13:15
  • $\begingroup$ @nonon I don't think the two terms are fully equivalent. In my understanding, the term post-HF sometimes excludes methods using more than one determinant, such as CASSCF, that I don't know very well but would probably argue are still "wave function-based electron correlation methods". $\endgroup$
    – Anyon
    Commented May 14, 2023 at 13:32

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