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ESC 121: Astronomy Lab (OER)*

Course Description

This 1-credit course is a laboratory experience in astronomy for non-science majors.

Recommended Prerequisites

  • High School Algebra
  • ESC 120: Astronomy

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  1. Apply the basic principles of light to various astronomical bodies.
  2. Utilize the basic concepts of comparative planetology and planetary motion to compare, contrast, and analyze the properties and motions of planets.
  3. Apply laws of motion, stellar properties, and principles of distance measurement in multiple contexts both inside and outside the solar system.
  4. Analyze astronomical data in graphical form.
  5. Utilize Hubble's Law and other physical principles to measure and analyze the age, expansion, and fate of the universe.

General Education Outcomes (GEOs)

Please check the applicable GEOs for this course, if any, by outcomes at GEO Category Search, or by subject area at GEO Discipline Search.

Course Activities and Grading

AssignmentsPointsWeight

Discussions (15@10 points each)

150

15%

Lab Assignments (13 @ 50 points each and 2 @100 points each)

850

85%

Total

1000

100%

Recommended Text

  • This textbook, which is used for ESC 120: Astronomy, is an ebook that is available through OpenStax at no cost to students. If students would like a print copy, then there will be a fee through Amazon but the print copy is not required. Students should access the textbook, Fraknoi, Andrew et al. Astronomy here https://openstax.org/details/books/astronomy.

Course Schedule

WeekSLOsRecommended ReadingsAssignments

1

4

Math Review
  • Readings:
    • There are no recommeded readings.
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

2

2

Kepler's Laws and Gravity
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 3
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

3

1

Properities of Light
  • Readings:
    • Chapters 5 and 17
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

4

2

Planetary Properties
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 7
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

5

2

Terrestrial Planets
  • Readings:
    • Chapters 8-10
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

6

2

Jovian Planets
  • Readings:
    • Chapters 11 and 12
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

7

3

Comets
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 13
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

8

4

The Sun
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 15
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

9

3,4

Properties of Stars and the HR Diagram
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 18
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

10

3,4

Star Distances
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 19
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

11

3,4

Exoplanets
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 21
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

12

3

White Dwarfs in Binary Systems
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 23
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

13

3,4

The Structure of the Milky Way and Other Galaxies
  • Readings:
    • Chapters 25 and 26
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

14

4,5

Hubble's Law
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 26
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

15

3

Habitable Exoplanets
  • Readings:
    • Chapter 30
  • Read recommended sections in textbook
  • Participate in the Discussion
  • Review the Lecture material
  • Complete and submit Lab assignment

*Open Educational Resources (OER) are openly licensed, educational resources that can be used for teaching, learning and research. OER may consist of a variety of resources such as textbooks, videos and software that are at little or no cost for students.

COSC Accessibility Statement

Charter Oak State College encourages students with disabilities, including non-visible disabilities such as chronic diseases, learning disabilities, head injury, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, or psychiatric disabilities, to discuss appropriate accommodations with the Office of Accessibility Services at OAS@charteroak.edu.

COSC Policies, Course Policies, Academic Support Services and Resources

Students are responsible for knowing all Charter Oak State College (COSC) institutional policies, course-specific policies, procedures, and available academic support services and resources. Please see COSC Policies for COSC institutional policies and the “Course Policies” link for specific policies related to this course. COSC Resources information regarding available COSC academic support services and resources.