Intro to Astronomy (AST 111)
Have you ever looked up at the night sky and marveled at the vastness and complexity of space? You are invited to take a deeper dive into the mind-blowing world of astronomy. At the end of this course, you will walk away with the knowledge to answer the following questions:
- Where did our solar system come from?
- How is our solar system structured?
- What makes up our solar system - what are its contents?
- What are exosolar planetary systems?
- What is the history of the field of astronomy?
- Why are the various properties of light important to astronomy?
- What are the various instruments used in astronomy and how are they used?
Throughout the course, you will also take a look at nearby stars and learn about the Lowell Observatory, the Challenger Space Center, the Discovery Channel Telescope, and Meteor Crater, the largest meteor impact site in the world. Additionally, you will take a virtual tour of the Lunar Exploration Museum and the home of the Mars Space Flight Facility where scientists are using spacecraft to explore the geology of Mars.
This course is packed with information and will greatly expand your understanding of our vast universe.
What you’ll learn
- Describe the origins, structure, contents, and evolution of our solar system.
- Use algebra and order-of-magnitude estimates to obtain quantitative, scientific results.
- Give clear explanations of physical phenomena.
What to expect in class
Video lectures, readings, labs, outdoor activities, homework, design project, discussions, live meetings with the instructor, quizzes, and a final exam.
Exams and grading
- 30% - Homework (14)
- 15% - Labs (7)
- 15% - Outdoor Activities (3)
- 20% - Quizzes (3)
- 5% - Design Project (1)
- 5% - Content Mastery (14)
- 10% - Final Exam