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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Ana M. Larson
ASTR 211
Seattle Campus

The Universe and Change

Gravity as central to the form and evolution of the universe. Conceptual formulation of gravity from the Renaissance to Einstein. Its consequences from the falling of an apple to the slowing of the expansion of the universe. Offered: W.

Class description

We will start with our own observations of the night sky and relate those to the theories of Ptolemy and others, reproducing and understanding the universe from a geocentric point of view. We then move to Galileo's and Newton's time periods and the definition of gravity. We investigate the steps that led to the acceptance of the heliocentric universe, and then a universe with no center. We investigate large scale structure, the expansion and possible acceleration of the universe, and such ideas as superstrings.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Interactive lecture, class discussion of reading, hands-on activities and exercises, short research projects.

Recommended preparation

A course in introductory astronomy and/or physics will help, but is not necessary.

Class assignments and grading

Discussions, exercises, web research, reading

Participation, quizzes, short papers, final exam


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Ana M. Larson
Date: 11/27/2007