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Undergraduate Catalog 2014-2015


Approved Courses

The following list includes undergraduate courses that have been approved as of May 2014.  Courses added after that date do not appear in this list.  Courses eliminated after that date may still appear.  Not every course is offered regularly.  Students should consult the Schedule of Classes at www.testudo.umd.edu to ascertain which courses are actually offered during a given semester.

COURSE NUMBERING SYSTEM

Number   Eligibility
000-099   Non-credit course
100-199   Primarily freshman course
200-299   Primarily sophomore course
300-399   Junior, senior course not acceptable for credit toward graduate degrees
386-387   Campus-wide internship courses; refer to information describing Experiential Learning
400-499   Junior, senior course acceptable for credit toward some graduate degree
500-599   Professional School course (Dentistry, Architecture, Law, Medicine) or post-baccalaureate course
600-899   Course restricted to graduate students
799   Master Thesis credit
899   Doctoral Dissertation credit

 

Use the search box below to view the approved courses.

Courses in "ASTR-Astronomy"

ASTR - Astronomy

ASTR 100 Introduction to Astronomy (3) Credit only granted for: ASTR100, ASTR101, or ASTR120. An elementary course in descriptive astronomy, especially appropriate for non-science students. Topics include the Sun, Moon, planets, stars, and nebulae, galaxies, and evolution of the Universe.

ASTR 101 General Astronomy (4) Credit only granted for: ASTR100, ASTR101, or ASTR120. Descriptive astronomy, appropriate for non-science majors. Sun, moon, planets, stars, nebulae, galaxies and evolution. Laboratory exercises include use of photographic material, computer simulations, and standard laboratory equipment.

ASTR 120 Introductory Astrophysics - Solar System (3) Prerequisite: Must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in MATH115. Restriction: Must not have completed ASTR101 or ASTR100. Credit only granted for: ASTR100, ASTR101, or ASTR120. For students majoring in astronomy or with a strong interest in science. Topics include development of astronomy, planetary orbits, electromagnetic radiation, telescopes as well as constituents and origin of the solar system (planets, satellites, comets, asteroids, meteoroids, etc.).

ASTR 121 Introductory Astrophysics II - Stars and Beyond (4) Prerequisite: ASTR120 and MATH115; or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. For students majoring in astronomy or with a strong interest in science. Includes instrumentation, stellar properties, stellar evolution, structure of the galaxy, other galaxies, large scale structure, Big Bang Theory, and future of the universe.

ASTR 220 Collisions in Space - The Threat of Asteroid Impacts (3) Restriction: Must not be in Astronomy program. Additional information: Course is open to Astronomy and Planetary Sciences minors. Appropriate for non-science majors. Worried? Can't sleep? Collisions in Space will evaluate the threat of asteroid impacts with the Earth using knowledge of asteroid characteristics and orbits. The merits of possible defense plans will be discussed, as well as the budgetary and political concerns associated with implementing any such plan.

ASTR 230 The Science and Fiction of Planetary Systems (3) Prerequisite: Must have math eligibility of MATH115 or higher; or MATH113. Have you ever wondered if humans will ever terraform Mars or Europa so we could live there without a spacesuit? Has it ever crossed your mind how lucky you are that you live on a water-rich planet with an oxygen-rich atmosphere? Have you ever suspected novelists and scriptwriters of creating ridiculous planets that violate scientific laws? Does the fate of our planet's thin biosphere keep you up at night? How common is life in the Universe? These are difficult questions, but armed with the right information, you can answer all of them. The Science and Fiction of Planetary Systems will help you develop a deeper understanding of why planets are the way they are. Along the way, you'll see examples of mistakes made in classic science fiction movies, novels and short stories and get the chance to invent your own plausible planets!

ASTR 288 Special Projects in Astronomy (1-3) Prerequisite: Permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Repeatable to 6 credits. Independent study, short research projects, tutorial reading, and assisting with faculty research and teaching under special supervision.

ASTR 300 Stars and Stellar Systems (3) Prerequisite: ASTR100 or ASTR101; and completion of the CORE Distributive Studies requirement in Mathematics and Sciences or General Education Fundamental Studies requirement in Mathematics. Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Designed primarily for non-science majors. Study of stars-types, properties, evolution, and distribution in space; supernovae, pulsars, and black holes.

ASTR 305 Astronomy and the Media (3) Although science plays a central role in modern life, the media can present scientific discoveries and thought as too complex and arcane for intelligent laypeople to understand. This has the effect of excluding non-scientists from this important intellectual discourse and sometimes of even manipulating their views. This course uses astronomy (and other science) news stories to give students the tools and motivation to critically evaluate scientific news for themselves, enabling them to use the media to keep abreast of science throughout their lives.

ASTR 310 Observational Astronomy (3) Prerequisite: ASTR121; and (PHYS171 or PHYS161). Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Restriction: Must be in Astronomy program. Introduction to current optical observational techniques, with brief coverage of infrared, ultraviolet, and x-ray techniques. Statistics, spherical trigonometry time, catalogs, geometrical and physical optics, telescopes, and optical instruments. Effects of the atmosphere. Practical work at the observatory using a CCD camera. Some nighttime observing sessions.

ASTR 320 Theoretical Astrophysics (3) Prerequisite: ASTR121; and (PHYS270 and PHYS271; or PHYS273). Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Application of selected physics concepts in an astrophysical context. Topics would include gravity (Keplerian motion, Virial theorem, Roche limit, dynamical friction); gas dynamics (hydrostatic equilibrium, stellar models, spiral density waves), thermodynamics and statistical physics (Boltzmann distribution, Wien displacement, convective instability, degenerate gas); atomic physics (quantum principles, H atom, permitted and forbidden lines); radiation processes (line radiation, opacity).

ASTR 330 Solar System Astronomy (3) Prerequisite: ASTR100 or ASTR101; and completion of the CORE Distributive Studies requirement in Mathematics and Sciences or the General Education Fundamental Studies requirement in Mathematics. Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Credit only granted for: ASTR330 or GEOL212. Designed primarily for non-science majors. The structure of planets and of their atmospheres, the nature of comets, asteroids, and satellites. Comparison of various theories for the origin of the solar system. Emphasis on a description of recent data and interpretation.

ASTR 340 Origin of the Universe (3) Prerequisite: ASTR100 or ASTR101; and completion of the CORE Distributive Studies requirement in Mathematics and Sciences or General Education Fundamental Studies requirement in Mathematics. Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Designed primarily for non-science majors. A study of our progression of knowledge about the universe. Topics include: early cosmological models, geocentric vs. heliocentric theory, curvature of space, Hubble's Law, Big Bang Theory, microwave background radiation, evolution of stars and galaxies, dark matter, active galaxies, quasars and the future of the universe.

ASTR 380 Life in the Universe - Astrobiology (3) Designed primarily for non-science majors. Study of the astronomical perspective on the conditions for the origin and existence of life in the universe.

ASTR 386 Experiential Learning (1-3) Restriction: Junior standing or higher; and permission of CMNS-Astronomy department.

ASTR 398 Special Topics in Astronomy (3) Restriction: Junior standing or higher; or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Repeatable to 6 credits if content differs. This course is designed primarily for students not majoring in astronomy and is suitable for nonscience students. It will concentrate study in some limited field in astronomy which will vary from semester to semester. Possible subjects for study are the solar system, extragalactic astronomy and cosmology, the inconstant universe.

ASTR 399 Honors Seminar (1-16) Restriction: Must be admitted to the departmental honors program in astronomy. Credit according to work done.

ASTR 410 Radio Astronomy (3) Prerequisite: ASTR121; and (PHYS271 and PHYS270; or PHYS273). Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Introduction to current observational techniques in radio astronomy. The radio sky, radiophysics, coordinates and catalogs, antenna theory, Fourier transforms, interferometry and arrays, aperture synthesis, and radio detectors.

ASTR 415 Computational Astrophysics (3) Prerequisite: ASTR121; and (PHYS271 and PHYS270; or PHYS273). Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Introduction to the most important computational techniques being used in research in astrophysics. Topics include modern high performance computer architectures, scientific visualization and data analysis, and detailed descriptions of numerical algorithms for the solution to a wide range of mathematical systems important in astrophysics.

ASTR 421 Galaxies (3) Prerequisite: ASTR121; and (PHYS271 and PHYS270; or PHYS273). Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Introduction to structure, kinematics, and dynamics of normal and peculiar galaxies. Quantitative descriptions of normal spiral galaxies (like our Milky Way) and elliptical galaxies will be followed by more exotic considerations such as interacting and merging galaxies, and active galactic nuclei.

ASTR 422 Cosmology (3) Prerequisite: Must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in ASTR320; or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Introduction to modern cosmology. Topics include large scale structure of universe, the intergalactic medium, the nature of dark matter cosmological models and galaxy formation.

ASTR 430 The Solar System (3) Prerequisite: ASTR121; and (PHYS271 and PHYS270; or PHYS273). Or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Formation and evolution of the Solar System. Planetary surfaces, interiors, atmospheres, and magnetospheres. Asteroids, comets, planetary satellites, and ring systems. Emphasis on using basic physics to understand observed properties of the Solar System. Intended for students majoring in the physical sciences.

ASTR 450 Orbital Dynamics (3) Prerequisite: Must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in ASTR320; or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Vectorial mechanics, motion in a central force field, gravitational and non-gravitational forces, the two-body and three-body problems, orbital elements and orbital perturbation theory, resonances in the solar system, chaos. Intended for students majoring in any of the physical sciences.

ASTR 480 High Energy Astrophysics (3) Prerequisite: Must have completed or be concurrently enrolled in ASTR320; or permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. The structure, formation, and astrophysics of compact objects, such as white dwarfs, neutron stars, and black holes, are examined. Phenomena such as supernovae and high-energy particles are also covered.

ASTR 498 Special Problems in Astronomy (1-6) Restriction: Must be in one of the following programs (Physics; Astronomy) ; and permission of CMNS-Astronomy department. Research or special study. Credit according to work done.

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