Office: RLM 17.218
Hours: W10-11, F 1-2
in RLM 17.218
Phone: (512) 471-3425
Lectures and Announcements
We will present an overview of the contents of the Universe, with a physical explanation of what is there. The emphasis will be
on how astronomers study the Universe and explanations for what they find, rather than on descriptions. College-level physics
and calculus are not required, but we will use high school math (some trigonometry) and science (Newton's laws).
Astronomy Today, by Chaisson and McMillan Note: this book is aimed at non-science majors, and so uses less math than we will use.
Lectures will give more quantitative explanations. Notes will be available to members of the class.
Homework will be assigned each Friday, due at the beginning of class the next Friday (as noted). Late homework will
receive 1/2 credit. You may get help on homework (or anything else) from the professor or TA during office hours or
by appointment. You are welcome to work on homework with other students, but verbatim copies of homeworks will
not be accepted.
There will be 6 half-period quizzes, one roughly every two weeks. Changes to the topics to be covered will be
announced in class the week before each quiz.
Homework will count 1/4 of your grade, weekly quizzes will count 1/3, participation (class and extras) 1/12, and the final
exam will count 1/3. Your lowest homework and lowest quiz scores will be dropped. Note: You will not be allowed to
drop quizzes you have not taken or homework you have not handed in. We will not have make-up quizzes, but let us know
if you have a legitimate excuse for missing one. Although this is not a writing class, test answers will usually consist of
short written explanations, and we will count off for confusing or ungrammatical answers.