Astronomy - Undergraduate Minor

The department offers a minor created for majors in a variety of scientific fields, and two minor emphases specifically designed to address the needs and interests of students from the Colleges of Education and Engineering. Any undergraduate, however, may pursue any of the three minor tracks.

Requirements

The requirements for the regular minor requires 19 credits, from the following:

Requirements
ASTR 105GThe Planets4
or ASTR 110G Introduction to Astronomy
Select two from the following: 16
Revolutionary Ideas in Astronomy3
The Search for Life in the Universe3
Into the Final Frontier3
Planetary Exploration3
Select 9 credits between the following groups: 29
Group A
Select 6-9 credits from the following: 2
Topics in Modern Astrophysics3
Introduction to Astronomical Observations and Techniques3
Stellar Dynamics and Hydrodynamics 33
Observational Techniques I 33
Group B
Select 3-9 credits from the following: 2,4
Aerospace Systems Engineering3
Physiology of Microorganisms3
Evolution3
Ecology of Microorganisms3
Artificial Intelligence I3
Database Management Systems I3
Introduction to Robotics3
Parallel Programming3
General Geochemistry3
Physical Chemistry3
Physical Chemistry I3
Antennas and Radiation3
Space System Mission Design and Analysis3
Introduction to Optics3
Fundamentals of Photonics4
Isotope Geochemistry3
Complex Variables3
Fourier Series and Boundary Value Problems3
Intermediate Mechanics I3
Intermediate Electricity and Magnetism I3
Thermodynamics3
Statistics for Engineers and Scientists I3
Probability: Theory and Applications3
Statistics: Theory and Applications3
Total Credits19
1

Three credits of ASTR 400 Undergraduate Research may replace one of these courses.

2

ASTR 401 Topics in Modern Astrophysics and ASTR 402 Introduction to Astronomical Observations and Techniques are the preferred classes but are generally offered only in alternate years. Three credits of ASTR 400 Undergraduate Research may replace one of these courses, but not the same three if used above.

3

Cross-listed with graduate classes and require special permission. 

4

Alternative 400-level courses in the physical sciences, engineering, or related fields, including one-time seminars, may be proposed on a case-by-case basis to fulfill this requirement, drawn from the fields of astronomy, biochemistry, biology, chemistry, computer science, geology, geophysics, mathematics, physics, statistics or from engineering. Proposals should include a clear justification that connects the course materials to a particular topic in astronomy or astrophysics.

Emphasis: Education

The requirements for the education track minor requires 18-20 credits from the following:

ASTR 105GThe Planets4
ASTR 110GIntroduction to Astronomy4
Select two from the following:6
Revolutionary Ideas in Astronomy3
The Search for Life in the Universe3
Into the Final Frontier3
Planetary Exploration3
Select 4-6 credits from the following: 54-6
Undergraduate Research1-3
Topics in Modern Astrophysics3
Introduction to Astronomical Observations and Techniques3
Methods of Teaching Elementary School Science3
Teaching Science at the Middle and High School Level3
Total Credits18-20
5

This requirement will generally be fulfilled by two 3-credit courses. Students may request the 4 credit option instead, if an appropriate topic and instructor for 1 credit of ASTR 400 Undergraduate Research are available. ASTR 401 Topics in Modern Astrophysics and ASTR 402 Introduction to Astronomical Observations and Techniques are generally offered only in alternate years, and have prerequisites.

Emphasis: Engineering

The requirements for the engineering track minor requires 18-19 credits from the following:

Required Courses
Select 3-4 credits from the following:3-4
The Planets4
Introduction to Astronomy4
Engineering Physics I3
Engineering Physics II3
Select one from the following:3
Revolutionary Ideas in Astronomy3
The Search for Life in the Universe3
Into the Final Frontier3
Planetary Exploration3
Select 12 credits from the following two groups:12
Group A
Select 6-9 credits from the following: 6
Aerospace Capstone Design3
Undergraduate Research1-3
Topics in Modern Astrophysics 73
Introduction to Astronomical Observations and Techniques 73
Stellar Dynamics and Hydrodynamics 83
Observational Techniques I 83
Undergraduate Research1-3
Capstone Design I3
Capstone Design II3
Undergraduate Research1-3
Group B
Select 3-6 credits from the following: 9
Aerospace Systems Engineering3
Physiology of Microorganisms3
Evolution3
Ecology of Microorganisms3
Artificial Intelligence I3
Database Management Systems I3
Introduction to Robotics3
Parallel Programming3
General Geochemistry3
Physical Chemistry3
Physical Chemistry I3
Antennas and Radiation3
Space System Mission Design and Analysis3
Introduction to Optics3
Fundamentals of Photonics4
Isotope Geochemistry3
Complex Variables3
Fourier Series and Boundary Value Problems3
Intermediate Mechanics I3
Intermediate Electricity and Magnetism I3
Thermodynamics3
Statistics for Engineers and Scientists I3
Probability: Theory and Applications3
Statistics: Theory and Applications3
Total Credits18-19
6

Taking any of the non-astronomy classes for this requirement requires prior approval from the head of astronomy on a case-by-case basis, with a clear connection being established between the proposed research or design project and a particular topic in astronomy or astrophysics (astronomy instrumentation or observational projects are particularly encouraged); no more than 3 non-ASTR credits can be counted toward the minor.

7

Generally offered in alternate years.

8

Cross-listed with graduate classes and require special permission. 

9

Alternative 400-level courses in the physical sciences, engineering, or related fields, including one-time seminars, may be proposed on a case-by-case basis to fulfill this requirement, drawn from the fields of astronomy, biochemistry, biology, chemistry, computer science, geology, geophysics, mathematics, physics, statistics, or from engineering. Proposals should include a clear justification that connects the course materials to a particular topic in astronomy or astrophysics.