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Cabrillo Astronomy A brief tour With Dr. Rick as your guide… Astro 10: Introductory Astronomy *Rick Nolthenius Call me “Rick”. (“Mr. Nolthenius” sounds… unexciting) *Office: 706a 479-6506 *email: *visit my extremely excellent website!

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astro 10 introductory astronomy

Astro 10: Introductory Astronomy

*Rick Nolthenius

Call me “Rick”. (“Mr. Nolthenius” sounds… unexciting)

*Office: 706a 479-6506


*visit my extremely excellent website!

Astro 10 “Introductory Astronomy”

Lecture class covering general survey Astronomy.

For University transfer fulfilling your lab science, you’ll also need to take Astro 8A – Observational Astronomy (this or later semester)

textbook pathways to astronomy schneider s and arny t
Textbook – “Pathways to Astronomy” – Schneider S. and Arny T.
  • $98 in the bookstore Maybe you can find used editions elsewhere on the web?
  • One copy on reserve in the library
  • 7 mult. choice quizzes based on text

- ~10 questions each

- closed notes

  • 2 video quizzes, after seeing ~1 hr video program. Take notes and use them for your mult. choice quiz, ~13 questions each
  • Final Exam: 50 mult. choice questions. You may have a single 8x10 sheet of paper crammed with all the notes you can muster!
  • Lowest score dropped. Will drop 2 quizzes but ONLY if both are no-show’s
  • Because…No make-ups
  • Extra Credit possibilities
  • Buy 11 green narrow scantron sheets from the book store. $3. Cheap! Keep them in your notebook along with a pencil.
new this year clickers
New this year… clickers!
  • After the first 2 weeks, we’ll have impromptu questions during the lectures, to monitor your “absorptivity”. Sometimes, you’ll have a couple minutes to conference with your immediate classmate neighbors and then click your answer. Some are “freebies”, and don’t count, some do, and you’ll know which at the time given.
  • It’s fun! It’s interactive! And it’ll help you on the regular quizzes. Can’t say at this moment how many questions or how often we’ll do this. This is new for me too.
  • Some of the questions will be directly taken from your upcoming quiz or final.
  • Attendence important for doing well, and the clickers will help me monitor this. Attendence per se will not be a factor in your final grade
  • My current plan is - Your cumulative score on all questions answered with the clickers will count as another quiz, with the same weight (or so is my current plan). This is the “8th quiz” as it were.
what will we do in astro 10
What will we Do in Astro 10?
  • We start with the earth and sky, how the rotating earth and orbiting earth make the sky show the patterns it does.
  • Seasons, eclipses, some history.
  • A session in the Cabrillo Planetarium, complete with spooky music!
  • My own “Chapter 0” on the principles of clear thinking and scientific method
  • Then to boldly go, on to the planets and the stars!
  • And Onward, to the Galaxy and Beyond
  • To the Universe as a whole, the origin of our Universe, parallel universes, Inflation and the quantum origin, and how the existence of life says profound things about the nature of the Universe.
  • I’ll stress the observational facts and how we use scientific inference to arrive at ideas, and to test them to home in on our current theories of the Universe.
  • Exams will stress getting a picture of processes and the ‘why’ behind what we see, not so much on memorized factoids.
astro 8a observational astronomy
Astro 8A “Observational Astronomy”

… A 1-unit evening class… under the stars!

and on cloudy nights
And on Cloudy Nights…
  • In-class Labs
  • Demonstrations
  • Fun projects on the computer
  • Polishing your beautiful images on the computers
and in the fall consider astro 9a astrophotography
And in the Fall, Consider Astro 9A “Astrophotography”
  • 1 – unit night lab class
  • Attracts both arts and amateur astronomy enthusiasts
  • Classic film photography, and Digital too
field astronomy courses
… Field Astronomy Courses
  • Sign-ups for these are…TOMORROW!!! 5:30pm in 705
  • Single weekend field trips to cool places and dark skies. Day tripping geology and nights under the stars looking through telescopes
  • Astro 27 – Field Astronomy at the Pinnacles
  • Astro 28T – Field Astronomy at Pt. Reyes National Seashore Apr 20-22
  • Astro 28U – Field Astronomy in the Giant Sequoia’s May 18-20
astro 27 geol 27 astro 28t astro 28u
Astro 27/Geol 27, Astro 28T, Astro 28U
  • Remember - Sign-ups for these are…TOMORROW!!!
  • Tue Feb 6 at 5:30pm in Room 705
  • First 30 get vouchers to go pay the bank for camping fees. Astro 27, 28T, 28U
  • Join us!