A358 Homepage
Astro 358 (Unique 48195)/ Spring 2006

Galaxies and the Universe

Course Syllabus and Overview

Prof. Shardha Jogee
Tu Th 5-6 pm or by appointment
RLM 16.224
(512) 471-1395
Ben Holder
Wed 5 to 6 pm or by appointment
RLM 7.206
(512) 471-7253
  • Textbook and Reading: The primary course textbook is "Galaxies in the Universe: An Introduction", by Linda Sparke and John Gallagher (Publisher: Cambridge University Press, copyright 2000), available in paperback. For additional reading, I have put the book "Galactic Astronomy", by Binney and Merrifield (Publisher: Princeton University Press, copyright 1998) on reserve in the PMA library (RLM, 4th floor) and in the Peridier Library (RLM 15.202). However, note that the course will be primarily based on the lectures where I will cover extra material not present in the textbook, and use simulations or animations to clarify new concepts. There will also be extra handouts and reading material that will be posted on this website as the class proceeds.
  • Calendar: The course calendar provides an approximate timeline of the topics to be covered in class. This calendar will be regularly updated as needed, so make sure to consult the online version each week.
  • Course Grade: Your grades will be posted online on eGradebook. I strongly recommend that you attend classes as assignments are primarily based on the lectures and your in-class participation count directly toward your final grade. The final grade will consist of
      25% Homeworks
      20% Midterm exam
      20% End-of-term exam
      20% In-class activities (after dropping the lowest score) and class participation
      15% Research paper
    When converting your final numerical grades to letter grades, I will use the scheme below or one that is slightly more lenient:
      A= 85% to 100%
      B= 75% to 84%
      C= 65% to 74%
      D= 50% to 64%
      F= 0% to 49%
  • Class Policies: (1) There will be about 4-5 homeworks. Late homeworks will be accepted only if you have been granted an extension prior to the due date and will receive only partial credit; (2) There will be no final comprehensive exam; (3) There will be makeup exams only for students having a valid excuse and an official note from UT for the specific date and time of the missed exam. Makeup exams may be based on any part of the course; (4) The lowest in-class activity score will be dropped, and the remaining scores will make up 20% of the final grade; (5) We will accept requests for correction or re-grade of an assignment (homework, exam or quiz), at latest two weeks after it is handed back to you or posted on eGradebook; (6) You are encouraged to study with other students, but you must write up your own homework, exams, and quizzes. Cheating will be severely punished: if you copy someone's homework/quiz/exam or let someone copy yours, both of you will receive zero credit, and I will consider filing a report to the Dean of Students.

Current Announcements
  • Final grades are on eGradebook. and have been submitted to CNS. Well done! The final grade distribution was ~51% =A, 27%=B, 22%=C. We gave up to 5% bonus for class attendance. Please pick your assignements and research papers outside of Ben Holder's office. (RLM 7.206; (512) 471-7253). I was pleased with the level of many of the research papers,and I hope you learnt a lot while writing them. I enjoyed teaching this class, and I hope it has left you with an appreciation of the evolution of galaxies over cosmological times of 13 Gyr, and brought home how imcomplete our understanding still is. Have a good summer!

Class Resources

Internet Articles

Selected Figures from Lecture and Assignments
    You will find below, mostly in pdf format, selected parts of the lecture, such as figures and plots. The main notes, explanations, and demos will be covered only in class where in-class quiz/activities will count toward 20% of the final grade.

  • Figures from Lec 9+10 (Tu Feb 14/2006 + Th Feb 16/2006)
  • Special Lecture on Bars: Lec 15 to 16 (Tu Mar 07/2006 + Th Mar 09/2006)