AST 1002 – Discovering The Universe

General Education Credit: P
High School Credit: 0.5

Course Instructor: Naibi Marinas
Naibí Mariñas, Ph.D.
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About The Course

This course offers a broad overview of modern astronomy. We will examine how observation, experimentation and exploration have led to our present day understanding of the Earth environment and the Universe we live in. Our goal is to help students gain a physical understanding and an appreciation of the cosmos, and more generally, of the scientific method and how scientific discoveries impact society. Along the way, we will use and practice critical thinking skills and learn how to formulate empirically testable hypotheses.

This course is primarily for those not majoring in physical science or mathematics.

Course Goals

  1. To provide students with a broad overview of modern astronomy. This will be accomplished through weekly videos, reading assignments, interactive animations and discussions. Students will be able to define common astronomical terms and explain basic concepts and theories for a range of astrophysical phenomena.
  2. To teach students the scientific process and how we can understand the Universe using basic physical laws derived on Earth.
  3. To review the major scientific developments in astronomy and summarize their impacts on society and our environment such as recognizing our place in the Universe, comparing energy sources, and how atmospheric effects of planets influence climate change.
  4. To teach scientific reasoning. Scientific reasoning is the use of logic, observations, and critical thinking to interpret the world around you.
  5. To improve scientific literacy. Literacy in the basic concepts and terminology of science is necessary if they wish to follow science stories in the news or make informed decisions (such as voting) on issues that pertain to science.
  6. To help students learn to communicate scientific ideas clearly and effectively using written or graphic forms.

Satisfied High School Graduation Requirement Subject: Science