Astrophysics: a brief introduction
Time: 14:45 - 17:15
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Course Code: HS212
Duration: 2 sessions (over 2 weeks)
What is the course about?
This is an introductory course in which you will develop a basic understanding of the night sky, our position in the Solar System, the Milky Way and the Universe. We will use interactive software and apps to explore our solar system and others throughout the galaxy and look at potential habitable worlds. We will investigate how stars are formed and how they evolve and we will glimpse into the future of our star, the Sun. We will take a journey through the Milky Way and beyond, we will see the various beautiful morphologies of other galaxies and the overall structure of our vast never-ending universe. We will end with a brief discussion on the constituents of the Universe and the gaps in our understanding that still need to be filled.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
- The concept of the celestial sphere – how we map the night sky
- The Solar System
- Other solar systems in our galaxy, the Milky Way
- Stellar evolution
- The nature of galaxies
- The structure of the universe – observable and invisible.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- describe the main aspects of the celestial sphere and explain how we track the night sky
- describe the main features and locations of the 8 planets of the Solar System, some of the moons and other objects such as asteroids, dwarf planets and comets
- compare and contrast extrasolar planets with our solar system and state and explain conditions required for life
- state the main steps in the lifecycle of a low mass and high mass star, including the Sun
- describe the basic structure of the Milky Way and how it compares with other galaxies
- describe the structure of luminous and dark matter in the Universe and state the composition of the Universe.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
No previous knowledge is required. However an enthusiasm for learning and an open and critical mind will enhance your enjoyment and benefit from this course.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Lecture - all information will be supplied via Powerpoint slides which will be made available for download. Be prepared to contribute to class discussion and group work. There will be short online quizzes during the course that can be completed on your mobile phone.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
There are no other costs but you will require a notepad and pen if you wish to take notes.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Please check the science and nature section on our website for term 1 course options.
Rad heads up Science & Engineering at Kaplan International College in London Bridge, having spent more than seven years at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich developing and delivering world-class education programmes. She holds a degree in Physics with Astrophysics and a PhD in Astrochemistry, and has taught physics, maths and astronomy for almost ten years. Her biggest passions are quantum physics and astrobiology. https://twitter.com/Rad_T
Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.