On-Line Astronomy Assignments - Grading

To earn a letter grad of an "A" you will need to complete three outdoor observations (marked with an asterisk), one indoor observation (marked with two asterisks), and those other assignments I believe are necessary for every Astronomy student (marked with three asterisks).

If you do that minimum work, you can receive a Minnesota Graduation Standard value of "2." If you complete two more exercises, you can receive a standard value of "3," and if you complete four more exercises than the "2" level, you can earn a standard value of "4" for this course.

The number of assignments completed and the level of effort and expertise demonstrated will be the factors in determining 60% of your grade. The other 40% of your grade will depend on your completion of the reading, level of interest and participation during the chat sessions, and your willingness to make some recommendations that you feel will improve this course for future students.

The assignments are grouped together according to subject. However, there are five assignments which will require some astronomical observation. You do not need to have any particular equipment, but the use of binoculars will be very helpful. If you do not have access to a pair, you can still complete the observations, but locating binoculars will greatly enhance your ability to see things, and increase your level of stuff you might otherwise miss with your naked eyes. The completion of these five observations are an absolute requirement for this class, and it is extremely important that you do the observations in a sequence relative to the course. The first observation needs to be completed by the end of the second week, and the final observation during the final two weeks. Both the first and final observations should be done at the same time in the evening, since one of the purposes is to compare locations of stars. The observations where you look at a particular star, the moon, and the sun observation can be done anytime during the course.

The Night Sky

1. Write a Myth
2. First Constellation Observation
3. Star Observation (also found under "Light and Telescopes")


1. Ancient Astronomy Quiz
2. Copernican Revolution and Reformation Quiz***
3. Copernican Revolution and Reformation Paper***

Light and Telescopes

1. Star Observation, E-mail version* (also found under "The Night Sky")
2. Recommendations to a Potential Telescope Buyer

Solar System

1. Moon Observation Lab, E-mail version *
2. Sun Observation Lab, E-mail version **
3. Scale Model Lab, E-mail version***
4. Mars Cratering Lab, E-mail version
5. Pluto and Charon Lab, E-mail version

Earth Quiz, E-mail version***

7. Voyager Mission Quiz and Commentary, E-mail version
8. Stranded on the Moon, E-mail version
9. Planet Quiz, E-mail version ***


1. First Night Observation, E-mail version* (also found under "The Night Sky)
2. Final Night Observation, E-mail version *
3. AAVSO Star Assignment, E-mail version
4. SN 1987A Lab, E-mail version***
5. Sun Quiz, E-mail version ***


1. Hubble Deep Field, E-mail version***
2. Final Constellation Observation, E-mail version *

To receive a "C" in the course, you will need to have attended the chat sessions, done 2/4 outdoor observations and half of the quizzes

To receive a "B" in the course, you will need to have attended the chat sessions, done 3/4 outdoor observations, the Sun observation, and all of the quizzes, and two extra assignments

To receive an "A" in the course, you will need to have attended the chat sessions, done 4/4 outdoor observations, the Sun observation, all of the quizzes, and three extra assignments.

I would like every student to do the Scale Model of the Solar system and the Hubble Deep Field lab. These two labs and the grad standard paper are required to meet the Minnesota Science Standard for this course.

I want someone to at least try the Pluto/Charon lab and the SN 1987A Lab.

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