Radiation astronomy/Courses/Principles/Syllabus

While this course may be taken in any order by each student, it may also be taken during a specific calendar period comparable to a university semester such as from January through May (Spring) or August through December (Fall).

Aurorae are mostly caused by energetic electrons precipitating into the atmosphere. Credit: Samuel Blanc[1].

This is a general syllabus for the course. Items under development for the course appear below. For specifics on the course content, see principles of radiation astronomy. For specifics per semester, check the appropriate term Spring or Fall.

Course registrationEdit

Anyone may enjoy learning by doing with any of the resources of this course at any time. No registration is required. Questions and comments are welcome on any of the course's resource "Discuss" pages. Just click on the "Add topic" button.

Those taking the course for possible credit at their home college or university may register on this resource's "Discuss" page by entering 4 ~s after any comment they care to leave indicating their intent. This will provide their username account here at Wikiversity.

Enjoy learning by doing!

Completion levelsEdit

This course is dynamic, but may also be taken as a semester offering by Wikiversity, see the Next course offering for the next formal class period. The current one started January 4, 2016 and ended May 8, 2016.

Each component resource may have a level of completion icon following it based on ≥ 100 kb equals 100 %, or 100 questions is 100 %, the midterm and final are based on 300 questions equals 100 %:

  1. This resource is a stub, which means that pretty well nothing has been done yet. 0-5%.  
  2. This resource is just getting off the ground. Please feel welcome to help! 6-15%.  
  3. Been started, but most of the work is still to be done - 16-30%.  
  4. About halfway there. You may help to clarify and expand it - 31-45%.  
  5. Almost complete, but you can help make it more thorough - 46-60%.  
  6. Ready for testing by learners and teachers. Please begin! 61-75%.  
  7. This resource is considered to be ready for use - 76-90%.  R
  8. This resource has reached a high level of completion - 91-100%.  C

Those resources such as the lectures, problem sets, or laboratories already at 100 % may no longer have a completion icon.


The content of each report consists of each students efforts with each laboratory, lesson, or activity where a report is required or requested. Results are included in the lesson page.

For structure of each report, follow the pattern used with manuscripts submitted for refereed journal submission:

  1. title,
  2. author line,
  3. abstract - usually written after the rest of the report is finished, describe briefly what you did,
  4. introduction - describe what is being examined or studied in your own words or quote the laboratory or lesson, your own words are preferred,
  5. experimentation - what you did to accomplish the assignment,
  6. discussion - describe the applicability and shortcomings of your effort, objectivity is important, also include shortcomings of the assignment,
  7. conclusion - what astronomical conclusion if any have you arrived at.

For any report you generate, you can receive review of your efforts by placing a copy of your report as a subpage of your user page, eg, Your:Userpage/Your Report Title, leaving a note on this page's Discuss, or on the resource's "Discuss" page. If you wish to receive review but do not wish to release your efforts into Wikiversity, you may use the Wikiversity email to send me a copy. Your efforts are copyrighted. If your efforts indicate original effort, you may wish to enter them into consideration for free release at the Wikiversity Journals.


  1. On the date here in the syllabus that a resource for the course is assigned, the material remains unchanged until the course is over. Any changes to a resource while the course is in progress do not affect material the student is responsible for knowing.

Next course offeringEdit

The next offering of the full semester course begins on Monday, August 27, 2018, and runs into December 2018. This offering may be found at principles of radiation astronomy/Syllabus/Fall.

The following sections are an experimental form of the course under development for the Spring of 2019, or later.

Lectures under developmentEdit

January 2, 2017, MondayEdit

January 3, 2017, TuesdayEdit

  • Quiz section lecture: Radiation.

January 7, 2015, WednesdayEdit

January 8, 2015, ThursdayEdit

  • Problem set: Energy phantoms, solutions including work steps due on January 15, 2015.

January 9, 2015, FridayEdit

January 12, 2015, MondayEdit

January 13, 2015, TuesdayEdit

January 14, 2015, WednesdayEdit

January 15, 2015, ThursdayEdit

January 16, 2015, FridayEdit

January 19, 2015, MondayEdit

January 20, 2015, TuesdayEdit

  • Laboratory: Cratering, report is due on January 27, 2015.

January 21, 2015, WednesdayEdit

January 22, 2015, ThursdayEdit

January 23, 2015, FridayEdit

January 26, 2015, MondayEdit

January 27, 2015, TuesdayEdit

January 28, 2015, WednesdayEdit

January 29, 2015, ThursdayEdit

January 30, 2015, FridayEdit

February 2, 2015, MondayEdit

February 3, 2015, TuesdayEdit

  • Quiz section lecture: First astronomical X-ray source.

February 4, 2015, WednesdayEdit

February 5, 2015, ThursdayEdit

February 6, 2015, FridayEdit

February 9, 2015, MondayEdit

February 10, 2015, TuesdayEdit

  • Hourly: Principles of radiation astronomy/Hourly 1 for lectures 1-16. Questions may include quiz section lectures, lessons, problem sets, and laboratories up to today but not today's laboratory or quiz section lecture.

February 11, 2015, WednesdayEdit

February 12, 2015, ThursdayEdit

February 13, 2015, FridayEdit

February 16, 2015, MondayEdit

February 17, 2015, TuesdayEdit

  • Laboratory: Galaxies, report is due on February 24, 2015.

February 18, 2015, WednesdayEdit

February 19, 2015, ThursdayEdit

  • Problem set: Unusual units, solutions including work steps due on February 26, 2015.

February 20, 2015, FridayEdit

February 23, 2015, MondayEdit

February 24, 2015, TuesdayEdit

  • Quiz section lecture: Interplanetary medium.

February 25, 2015, WednesdayEdit

February 26, 2015, ThursdayEdit

February 27, 2015, FridayEdit

March 2, 2015, MondayEdit

March 3, 2015, TuesdayEdit

This quiz is for lectures up through and including violet astronomy (1-24), the prior weeks laboratories, quiz section lectures from the course beginning through and including interplanetary medium, lessons and problem sets through and including those due previously to today.

  • Quiz section lecture: interstellar medium.

March 4, 2015, WednesdayEdit

March 5, 2015, ThursdayEdit

March 6, 2015, FridayEdit

March 9, 2015, MondayEdit

March 10, 2015, TuesdayEdit

  • Laboratory: Meteorites, report is due on March 17, 2015.

March 11, 2015, WednesdayEdit

March 12, 2015, ThursdayEdit

  • Problem set: Cosmic circuits, solutions including work steps due on March 19, 2015.

March 13, 2015, FridayEdit

March 16, 2015, MondayEdit

March 17, 2015, TuesdayEdit

March 18, 2015, WednesdayEdit

March 19, 2015, ThursdayEdit

  • Problem set: Column densities, solutions including work steps due on March 26, 2015.

March 20, 2015, FridayEdit

March 23, 2015, MondayEdit

March 24, 2015, TuesdayEdit

March 25, 2015, WednesdayEdit

March 26, 2015, ThursdayEdit

  • Problem set: Spectrographs, solutions including work steps due on April 2, 2015.

March 27, 2015, FridayEdit

March 30, 2015, MondayEdit

March 31, 2015, TuesdayEdit

April 1, 2015, WednesdayEdit

  • Lecture: Balloons for astronomy  .

April 2, 2015, ThursdayEdit

April 3, 2015, FridayEdit

April 6, 2015, MondayEdit

April 7, 2015, TuesdayEdit

April 8, 2015, WednesdayEdit

April 9, 2015, ThursdayEdit

April 10, 2015, FridayEdit

April 13, 2015, MondayEdit

April 14, 2015, TuesdayEdit

April 15, 2015, WednesdayEdit

April 16, 2015, ThursdayEdit

  • Problem set: Radiation dosage, solutions including work steps due on April 23, 2015.

April 17, 2015, FridayEdit

April 20, 2015, MondayEdit

November 29, 2016, TuesdayEdit

  • Quiz section lecture: X-ray trigonometric parallax.

April 22, 2015, WednesdayEdit

April 23, 2015, ThursdayEdit

  • Problem set: Star jumping, solutions including work steps due on April 30, 2015.

April 24, 2015, FridayEdit

April 27, 2015, MondayEdit

April 28, 2015, TuesdayEdit

  • Hourly: Principles of radiation astronomy/Hourly 3 for lectures 33-48, including quiz section lectures, lessons (except the last one), problem sets (except the last one), and laboratories not included in the first two hourlies.

April 29, 2015, WednesdayEdit

April 30, 2015, ThursdayEdit

May 1, 2015, FridayEdit

May 8, 2015, FridayEdit

Alternate examinations that may be used by your college or university for credit (and a grade) in this course will be available from Wikiversity by courier for closed, proctored session testing of proficiency.


  1. Repetition through learning by doing improves a student's knowledge retention and test-taking skills.

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit

{{Radiation astronomy resources}}{{Charge ontology}}{{Chemistry resources}}{{Physics resources}}

{{Technology resources}}