Office: RLM 17.220
Phone: (512) 471-6446
Office: RLM 16.308
Hours: T 1-3, Th 3-5
Phone: (512) 471-3453
(Tentative) M4-5, W4:30-6, F3-5. Meetings at other times can be easily arranged. However I urge you to feel free to call me at my home or office,
or to talk to me after class (outside the classroom, if necessaryI have some time after most of our classes); for
short questions there is usually no need for you to walk all the way to my office, and I welcome phone calls.
The course website will contain the syllabus, an outline of most
class notes, and illustrations you can download; extra reading in the form of articles that will be assigned (you can read them
online or print them); a way for you to easily check your exam scores; and a simple way for me to distribute handouts or make
slight revisions to the reading assignments. I will explain downloading of articles to you in class. I urge you to check the website often.
Required book: Bennett, Shostak, & Jakosky (BSJ), Life in the Universe (1st ed., 2003)
(This book is expensive, but will be used again in the Spring, so you can get "rebate" then.)
Additional articles will be assigned and made available through the class website or on reserve at one or more of the UT libraries.
A detailed list of the reading assignments for each topic covered in the course (see list below) will be handed out separately.
Exams: 95% of your grade will be based on five exams. All exams will be weighted equally except that your lowest exam score
will only receive a weight of 1/2 compared to the others. So you have to take all the exams, but if you have an off day (or week, etc.) it won't
hurt your final grade too much. The topics and dates of the exams (tentativeany changes will be announced heavily in class and at
the class website) are listed below. There will be no
required comprehensive final.