ASTRO 305 - Astronomy in the Community
Section: 001
Term: WN 2018
Subject: Astronomy (ASTRO)
Department: LSA Astronomy
1 - 3
Requirements & Distribution:
CBL, Experiential
With permission of instructor.
Advisory Prerequisites:
At least 3 credits in Astronomy.
This course counts toward the 60 credits of math/science required for a Bachelor of Science degree.
May be repeated for a maximum of 9 credit(s).

In this experiential course, students gain experience in education and public outreach by participating in, and organizing, activities such as astronomy open houses, telescope viewings, planetarium shows, Astronomy tutoring, and peer coaching. By working with the Astronomy Department faculty and staff on these activities, students expand their own understanding of astronomy and develop skills to communicate scientific principles and discoveries to the general public.

Course Requirements:

Students average four hours per week per credit of outreach-related activities under supervision of an instructor. Required training included (e.g., telescope operation). Each student must submit a plan and a schedule of events to execute. The plan must include the student's goals, such as improving ability to present astronomy to the public, becoming an accomplished operator of the Fitz telescope, or gaining experience with large event planning. Students must submit regular reports outlining what was accomplished during the reporting period, including how the time was spent and detailed plans for the next period. The report should include a reflection on how the student is achieving his/her goals, and specifics on what (if anything) the student should do to improve. The report should also comment on the overall team performance for group activities. Reports are due every two weeks for 1-credit, and every week for all other students. An on-line journal or blog is also encouraged.

Intended Audience:

Students with an interest in astronomy who plan teaching or other professions that require public science communication. The course will also be valuable for students who plan to go to graduate programs, since public outreach is an important and expected function for professional astronomers.

Class Format:

Students will usually work in assigned teams of 2-3 people. The teams will have weekly meetings with the instructor to ensure goals are met and to plan events.

ASTRO 305 - Astronomy in the Community
Schedule Listing
001 (IND)
020 (IND)
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