Bruce Betts' Online College Intro Astronomy Course 2017
Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy
Want to take an Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy class at your leisure with the Planetary Society's Director of Science and Technology, Dr. Bruce Betts? He is teaching the virtual college class at California State University Dominguez Hills (CSUDH) spring semester 2017-- Physics 195: Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy.
The course begins Tuesday, January 24, 2017 with weekly classes running from 3:00-4:30pm Pacific Time. You can watch each class live on CSUDH DHTV and Ustream or view archived classes that will be posted to this page shortly after their live presentations.
Dr. Betts guides you through the solar system and universe in a class heavy on imagery and fun, and light on math, while still giving you a strong introduction to what we know and how we learn more. Below, you can find class resources as well as links to an archive of the class.
You can view the syllabus which includes the class schedule and reading assignments list. We will also soon be posting written class assignments as they are given to the students formally enrolled in the class. We'll also try to post tests. Unless you are one of the students enrolled in the class already, you can choose to do them or not :)
To receive a Certificate of Achievement for watching the 2017 Bruce Betts Introduction to Planetary Science and Astronomy class (Physics 195 at California State University Dominguez Hills), a Random Space Fact (RSF) is given in each class designed to be “the” RSF that users will have to recognize later to get the certificate. The certificate quiz will become available near the end of the course.
Watching the course and want more? Continue learning and exploring by joining The Planetary Society, following Dr. Bruce Betts on Twitter, or Facebook, or Google+ and following The Planetary Society on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+.
Class Video Archives
You can view the archived versions of each 2017 class along with descriptions of what is covered in each class below. You can also access the archive of all of the Spring 2016 version of the same course and the archives for the Spring 2015, Spring 2014, Spring 2013 and Spring 2012 courses.
Take a tour of the Solar System in class 1 of Dr. Bruce Betts' online Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy course at California State University Dominguez Hills.
Lecture 2 of Dr. Bruce Betts' online Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy course covers easy things to see in the night sky without a telescope, and the electromagnetic spectrum (from gamma rays to visible to radio waves) -- what it is, and how and why we use different wavelength regions to explore planets and even learn their compositions. The class begins with guest Mat Kaplan, Media Producer for The Planetary Society and Bruce and Mat record a What's Up segment for Planetary Radio. Recorded at California State University Dominguez Hills.
Lecture 3 of Dr. Bruce Betts' online Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy course covers optical, radio, and space telescopes, eclipses, and an introduction to the Moon including lunar tides, phases and impact cratering. Recorded at California State University Dominguez Hills.
Lecture 4 of Dr. Bruce Betts' online Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy course covers the Moon, Mercury (characteristics, geology, core, exploration, water ice at poles), the Terrestrial Planet Atmospheres/Triad Planets -- a comparison of Venus, Earth, and Mars and why their atmospheres are so different, including discussions of the habitable zone, greenhouse effect, temperature systems (Kelvins, Celsius, Fahrenheit), and the carbon cycle. Recorded at California State University Dominguez Hills.
Lecture 6 of Dr. Bruce Betts' 2017 online Introductory Planetary Science and Astronomy course covers Venus (characteristics, geologic evolution, exploration, surface landers, exploration), and Mars (characteristics, many types of geologic features, poles, exploration spacecraft). Recorded at California State University Dominguez Hills.
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