|Astronomy of the Southern Skies|
112 January 2005
Gustavus Adolphus College
Syllabus - December Version
Charles F. Niederriter, Carey Freeth, William Zealey,
Ms. Joni Blackman, and Ms. Julie Blackman
, Kaufmann and Freedman, Freeman Press 7th Edition
Text: Astronomy Lab Manual, Gustavus
Southern Sky Planisphere
Policy and Evaluation
The course will run from 3rd January through to the 28th January:
Mornings, from 9:00 to 12:00, will be occupied with formal lecture/,
seminar presentations and practical work. Early
afternoons will be available for computer based practical work and group
projects. About 7 videos will be
shown during the workshop. These have been selected to be most applicable to the
topics dealt with in the course. Evening
observing as weather permits.
A 94 - 100
C+ 74 - 78
A- 90 - 94
B+ 86 - 90
C- 66 - 70
B 82 - 86
B- 78 - 82
0 - 58
Assignment of final letter grades will also take
into account the instructors' subjective evaluation of the student's attendance,
initiative, class participation, preparation, and evidence of improvement.
3. Objectives, Goals, and Expectations:
This course is intended to lead students to an understanding and
appreciation of the Universe.
Astronomy and Astrophysics is an observationally driven science. The ever
changing relationship between observations and their interpretation is stressed
throughout the course. There have been clear periods when
observational astronomy has driven theoretical astronomy and others where
the roles have been reversed. This course is
designed to illustrate the methods used by scientists (particularly astronomers)
and to describe how these methods have changed over the course of history.
The student will learn about the relationships between observations and
theories by studying examples from astronomy and physics.
In this course we will also discuss the relationships between science and
mathematics, science and religion, and science and society.
the end of the course students should be able to:
o describe the major astronomical sources observed in the Universe and their characteristics
The student beginning this course will be expected to understand basic
mathematical principles such as those taught in high school algebra and
geometry. During the course of the
semester, algebra and geometry will be used extensively to discuss physical
processes. The student will also be
introduced to some concepts in trigonometry to illustrate the connection between
mathematics and science but the student is not expected to use trigonometry to
solve any problems. It is hoped
that over the course of the semester the math skills of most students will
improve as a result of the assignments in this course.
Dance of the Planets
The rotation of Mercury
Lenses and Telescope optics
Comparative planetology: The surface of Mars
Photometry of the Pleiades
Classification of Stellar Spectra
Multi wavelength observations using SKYVIEW and other image data bases ( e.g.
ESO/UKST Sky Survey experiment
Radio astronomy of Pulsars
14:Large Scale Structure - Where the Galaxies Are
Course Content and Tentative Schedule:
Arrive in Christchurch.
to settle into accommodation (Tour of Christchurch)
Day at Leisure or Tour of Christchurch Area
Ancient Observatories and Archeoastronomy, Rising/setting of stars and
Motion and Phases of the Moon, Eclipses, Gravity, History of Science
and Light, Optics, Telescopes, CCDs
Overview of the Solar System and Earth, Atmosphere, Magnetic Field, Plate
Tectonics, ExtraSolar Planets
Moon and Mercury: Features, Structure, Formation, Evolution
Trip to Hamner Springs – Hot Springs and Ski Resort
Day at leisure
Venus, Mars, & Jupiter: Features,
Structure, Formation, Evolution
5 – Lunar Features, etc.
Outer Planets, moons, and rings, Comets, Meteors
Exam 1, The Sun: Features, Structure, Formation, Evolution
Measuring Temperature, Radius, Mass, HR Diagram, Birth of Stars
Sequence Evolution, Death of Stars
Neutron Stars, Suprnovae, Black Holes
Milky Way Galaxy, A Universe of Galaxies
Active Galaxies, Gamma Ray Bursters, etc.
Cosmology, The Beginning of the Universe, The Big Questions
Day at leisure, Dinner BBQ
Australia Trips and
Activities in the works: