department of astronomy - courses  
home dept of astronomy mcdonald observatory research hobby-eberly telescope directory university of texas  
department of astronomy
mcdonald observatory
hobby-eberly telescope
university of texas
   1   2   3  
Astronomy 392D - Fall 2003
Unique No. 46685 · MWF 10:00 - 11:00 · RLM 15.216B


Don Winget
Office: RLM 17.224
Phone: (512) 471-3404


The course is designed to give you some experience in the areas of mathematics that may be important to you at various times in your career. This course differs from others in that you may have no interest in a particular technique at this point in your career, and yet years from now your familiarity with it may allow you to explore a new field of astrophysics, or a new aspect of an old one.

The topics I have picked are subject to revision as we see how things go during the semester. They are based on a survey of the departmental and observatory faculty, research staff, and graduate students. They represent a sort of consensus of the most useful topics for astrophysics.

We each bring very diverse interests and experiences to this course, as well as vastly different mathematical preparation. If you are among the better prepared, this course is a way to fill-in the holes you have in your mathematical preparation, and review and refine your understanding of the areas you are already familiar with. If you have not been previously exposed to most of this material, you may have to spend a little more time reading some of the recommended texts. If this is you, be consoled that there is no better time in your career to do this than now.

Mathematics is a tool for doing science. It is to science what technique, or "chops", are to musicians. This is a chance to improve your chops. Be careful though, because the analogy works in another way as well. Your chops are not static. If you don't practice them, you will lose them. I'm living proof of that! So in the future, you must revisit these subjects occasionally to keep your understanding sharp and fresh. Make this easy on yourself, and keep your notes.


We will have approximately weekly assignments aimed at developing applications of the material to astrophysics, two in-class exams where you will be expected to derive or develop key conepts. The idea is to improve your mastery of the material, and guarantee that you have not just a theoretical understanding, but a practical one as well.

   1   2   3  

13 June 2003
Astronomy Program · The University of Texas at Austin · Austin, Texas 78712
prospective student inquiries:
site comments: