Courses in Astronomy (DIVISION 326)

Introductory Courses And Courses For Non-Concentrators. Astronomy 111 discusses our explorations of the solar system. Astronomy 112 deals with stars and the rest of the Universe beyond the solar system. Students in Astronomy 111 and 112 actively participate in a laboratory which meets in the evening each week. Neither of these courses is a prerequisite for the other. High school mathematics through plane geometry is useful. All students in each course will have opportunities for a planetarium visit and for evening observations with telescopes.

111. Introductory Astronomy: The Solar System. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in 101, 130, or 160. (4). (NS). (BS). (QR/2).

This course presents an introduction to the field of astronomy and astrophysics with an emphasis on the discoveries from space exploration. The first third of the course deals with understanding the history of astronomy, orbits, gravitation, optics and the properties of light and matter. The rest of the course explores the properties, origin and evolution of the major planets, asteroids, comets, the Sun and other components of the Solar System with particular emphasis on comparative aspects with respect to the Earth. The origin and formation of the Solar System and the origin of life will also be discussed. This course is intended for non-science concentrators with a basic high school math and science background. Astronomy 111 has an evening laboratory section every week. Course requirements include assigned reading, section meetings, homework, observations, quizzes, midterm, and a final examination. Laboratory sections include observations with telescopes. Cost:2 WL:4 (Sears)

112. Introductory Astronomy: Stars, Galaxies, and the Universe. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in 102, 130, or 160. (4). (NS). (BS). (QR/2).

This course is intended primarily for non-science concentrators, who wish to understand the phenomena and properties of the universe beyond our solar system. There are no astronomy prerequisites, and a basic high school math background (e.g., not calculus) will suffice. Students examine the widest possible range of interrelated natural phenomena, from sub-atomic particles to the Universe as a whole. Lectures inventory the different types of stars and examine how red giants, white dwarfs, black holes, supernovae, and people all fit together in one grand, remarkable scheme. The larger picture includes our Milky Way galaxy, less hospitable exploding galaxies, and enigmatic quasars. The present state of knowledge or speculation regarding the origin and ultimate fate of our universe will also receive special attention. It all came from somewhere, but where...and why? Course grades will be derived from scheduled quizzes or exams, and laboratory exercises. Laboratory sections will include planetarium demonstrations and observations with telescopes (weather permitting). Cost:2 WL:4 (MacAlpine)


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