About this Course
4.7
224 ratings
62 reviews
"How do they know that?" Modern astronomy has made some astonishing discoveries - how stars burn and how black holes form; galaxies from the edge of the universe and killer rocks right next door; where the elements come from and how the expanding universe is accelerating. But how do we know all that? The truth is that astronomy would be impossible without technology, and every advance in astronomy is really an advance in technology. But the technology by itself is not enough. We have to apply it critically with a knowledge of physics to unlock the secrets of the Universe. Each week we will cover a different aspect of Astronomical technology, matching each piece of technology to a highlight science result. We will explain how the technology works, how it has allowed us to collect astronomical data, and, with some basic physics, how we interpret the data to make scientific discoveries. The class will consist of video lectures, weekly quizzes, and discussion forums. Each week there will be five videos, totalling approximately 40 minutes. They will be in a regular pattern - a short introduction, an example science story, an explanation of the key technology area, a look at how the technology is used in practice, and finally a look at what the future may hold....
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Calendar

Flexible deadlines

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Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: Six weeks of study, requiring roughly 2 hours per week.

Approx. 7 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Beginner Level

Beginner Level

Clock

Suggested: Six weeks of study, requiring roughly 2 hours per week.

Approx. 7 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

1

Section
Clock
1 hour to complete

Science and Technology

Introducing the themes of the course, and a first look at the science and technology we will study....
Reading
4 videos (Total 30 min), 2 readings, 1 quiz
Video4 videos
W1 Part 2 - Revolutions in Astronomy11m
W1 Part 3 - Why Astronomy is Hard11m
W1 Part 4 - The Horse and Cart3m
Reading2 readings
Welcome to Week 1m
Additional Information for Week 1m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 1 quiz20m

2

Section
Clock
1 hour to complete

Telescopes and Stars

How telescopes work, how we use them to make images in different colours, and how we use those measurements to understand how stars work. ...
Reading
5 videos (Total 29 min), 2 readings, 1 quiz
Video5 videos
W2 Part 2 - The Sun - is every star like it?2m
W2 Part 3 - How Telescopes Work13m
W2 Part 4 - We are Stardust7m
W2 Part 5 - Even Bigger Telescopes?1m
Reading2 readings
Welcome to Week 2m
Additional Information for Week 2m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 2 quiz20m

3

Section
Clock
1 hour to complete

Space and Black Holes

Hunting for black holes, and why we need to get above the atmosphere to do it....
Reading
6 videos (Total 33 min), 3 readings, 1 quiz
Video6 videos
W3 Part 2 - Hunting for Black Holes2m
W3 Part 3 - Rockets, Spacecraft, and Orbits13m
W3 Part 4 - Hunting for Black Holes Part II8m
W3 Part 5 - Can Space Missions get Cheaper?1m
W3 Bonus video - A Sense of Scale2m
Reading3 readings
Welcome to Week 3m
Geostationary Orbits10m
Additional Information for Week 3m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 3 quiz20m

4

Section
Clock
1 hour to complete

Detectors and the First Galaxies

Detectors, how they work, and how we use them to catch the light from the very first galaxies. ...
Reading
6 videos (Total 39 min), 2 readings, 1 quiz
Video6 videos
W4 Part 2 - Galaxies since the Dawn of Time4m
W4 Part 3a - Light, Matter, and CCDs15m
W4 Part 3b - Infrared Detectors5m
W4 Part 4 - Galaxies since the Dawn of Time Part II7m
W4 Part 5 - Another Revolution in Detector Technology? 1m
Reading2 readings
Welcome to Week 4m
Additional Information for Week 4m
Quiz1 practice exercise
Week 4 quiz20m
4.7
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33%

started a new career after completing these courses
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83%

got a tangible career benefit from this course

Top Reviews

By ASJul 10th 2017

Excellent Course!! Amazing Teachers!! You can learn a lot of fundamentals if you are new to the field.Highly recommended for people for starting who just getting into astronomy.

By EEApr 27th 2018

This Course is phenominal and the mix of practicals shown with the consistency of thery makes it a remarkable product of gaining basics ofAstronomical knowledge

Instructors

Andy Lawrence

Physics and Astronomy

Catherine Heymans

Physics and Astronomy

About The University of Edinburgh

Influencing the world since 1583, The University of Edinburgh is consistently ranked as one of the world's top 50 universities. Today, we are an established and global leader in online learning, providing degree-level education to 3,000 online students in addition to 36,000 students on-campus. We also offer a wide range of free online courses in a variety of subjects. To find out more about studying for one of our online degrees, search for ‘Edinburgh online’ or visit www.ed.ac.uk/studying/online-learning/postgraduate ...

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.