This is our catalog of courses. We will occasionally adjust the course listing to reflect the addition of new courses and the retirement of others.
We are leaving the solar system– after a brief overview of planetology– to see what else is out there. From elemental gasses to stars to massive galaxies to all-consuming black holes, the universe is homogeneous and isotropic. Find out why!
Total classes: 13
Duration: 55-60 minutes
Prerequisite: Algebra (optional—math is occasionally demonstrated for its beauty in describing the universe)
Suggested grade level: 9th to 12th grade
Suggested credit: One full semester Science or Astronomy. For a full year credit, register for Mission: Mars! From Myth to Mariner to (Maybe) Manned or other science course in the fall.
We are leaving the solar system to see what else is out there! Textbook and lectures will be supplemented by up-to-date information from ongoing research.
Class 1: History of Astronomy
Class 2: Radiation, Spectroscopy, Telescopes
Class 3: Planetology and Geology
Class 4: Mercury, the Moon, and Venus
Class 5: Mars, Jupiter, Saturn
Class 6: Uranus, Neptune and Beyond; Formation of planets
Class 7: The Sun, Stars, and the Main Sequence
Class 8: Interstellar Medium and Star Formation
Class 9: Stellar Evolution and Stellar Explosions
Class 10: Neutron Stars, Black Holes, Weird Stuff
Class 11: Milky Way and other Galaxies
Class 12: Quasars and Cosmology
Class 13: The Early Universe and…Are We Alone?
Course materials: Astronomy Today 4/e Volume 2 Stars and Galaxies, ISBN-13: 978-0130935717 (https://amzn.to/3kTMQnp), or 5/e, 6/e, 7/e, 8/e… The later editions are pricey.
*If you buy used, please check with the seller—the second volume is the text for this course. Also, binoculars or small telescope, and a dark sky are helpful!
Homework: Class reading and quizzes; occasional outdoor activities. Expect to spend about two to three hours per class outside of the classroom on homework.