http://faculty.wiu.edu/IShovkovy/syllabus/101Y_Astronomy_s2.htm
Introduction to Astronomy
PHYS 101Y 
Days: 
Tuesday, Thursday 
Time: 
9:30
a.m. – 10:45 a.m. (section 2) 

Location: 
CURRENS 205 
Overview: This is First Year
Experience (FYE) course Introduction
to Astronomy for incoming
freshmen. This course is designed as a basic introduction to astronomy
for students with no college background in mathematics or physics. The course
will cover basic facts and some evolving ideas of the modern astronomy. The
course content will include topics on the Solar system, stars and the Universe.
No mathematical background beyond high school algebra will be assumed. There
are no prerequisites for this course.
Cocurricular
activities: There will be several outofclass
activities. The attendance of at least three
outofclass activities will be required (at least two of these should be group study sessions, and at least one should be either telescope viewing
or a Universitywide event). (See also the attendance policy and the
grading policy below.)
Peer
mentor for this course is Megan A.
Piper (section 2). The peer will be assisting the instructor with
outofclass activities, discussion sessions, and other (co)curricular events.
There will be organized several study sessions under the leadership of the peer
mentor in order to help students to interact with the instructor.
Objectives: The purpose of this course is to introduce the modern
topics of Astronomy to freshmen students. In addition, the integration of
cocurricular activities is to assist students in the transition to a
university setting, while emphasizing the breadth of the learning community
both within and outside the classroom.
Textbook:
A Beginner's Guide to the Universe by
Eric Chaisson and Steve McMillan.
Attendance policy: Attendance is required and it will count for
5% of the final grade. Students are responsible for all material
presented in class, all homework, and for all changes to the schedule or plans
announced in class.
My office is Currens 305. My office telephone number is 3092982743. You
are welcome to call me at my office at any time. There is a voice mail if
I am not available. My email address is IShovkovywiu.edu. I read
email daily during weekdays.
Office hours will be on Tuesday and Thursday from 2:30 p.m. to
4:00 p.m. and on Wednesday from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. You could make
additional appointments with me, but not on short notice. Try to request
appointments at least 2 or 3 working days in advance.
Grading policy:
Attendance 
5 points 
Average of group homework 
35 points 
Average of individual exams 
30 points 
4page paper 
10 points 
Final exam 
20 points 
TOTAL 
100 points 
The grades will be determined
as follows:
A (88100 points), B (7587
points), C (6274 points), D (5061
points), E (<50 points)
Tentative
schedule
There will be individual closed book/note exams
on the dates shown below in the tentative schedule. In addition to the exams
there will be group homework. Group homework will be assigned before each
individual exam. Group homework is due a week after assigned, unless advised
otherwise. Homework turned in after the
due date will not be
accepted. It is very important that you try the homework tests
yourself before discussing them in your group. Make sure to study the book
chapters and lecture notes. Exams and homework will be qualitative and
will be a combination of multiple choice and true/false questions. No
makeup exams will be available.
This course will have one writing assignment, a fourpage paper, typed (double spaced) or produced with a computer, which will count for 10% of your grade. (An example of a paper could be found here.) The paper has to be based on a material of a movie shown in class. Only the students that attend the class that day have the right to write the paper. The paper is due a week after the movie is shown. Late papers will not be accepted. For the students who cannot attend the first movie, there will be a second opportunity based on a second movie. The two movies are tentatively scheduled on the following dates:
1^{st} Movie 
Oct. 2, 2007 
Paper due Oct. 9, 2007 
2^{nd} Movie 
Nov. 1, 2007 
Paper due Nov. 8, 2007 
The
exact schedule for lectures and examinations will depend on how long it takes
to cover the material. The following is my best guess as of now (August
2007). Please note that the three individual exams are tentatively
scheduled for September 20 (Thursday),
October 25 (Thursday), and December 4 (Tuesday). Note that the lowest
individual exam (and homework) grade will be dropped, provided doing so raises
the final grade. A comprehensive final exam is scheduled for December 13
(Thursday) at 8:00 a.m. – 9:50 a.m.
Dates 
Tentative schedule 
August 20, 2007 
Classes start 
September 13, 2007 
1^{st}
group homework (due on Sep. 20, 2007) 
September 20, 2007 
1^{st} EXAM 
October 2, 2007 
1^{st} Movie (4page paper is due on Oct. 9, 2007) 
October 18, 2007 
2^{nd}
group homework (due on Oct. 25, 2007) 
October 25, 2007 
2^{nd} EXAM 
November 1, 2007 
2^{nd} Movie (4page paper is due on Nov. 8, 2007) 
November 19 – 23, 2007 
No classes (Thanksgiving break) 
November 27, 2007 
3^{rd} group
homework (due on Dec. 4, 2007) 
Dec 4, 2007 
3^{rd} EXAM 
December 13, 2007 
FINAL EXAM (8 a.m. – 9:50 a.m.) 
For student rights and
responsibilities see the WIU web page: http://www.wiu.edu/provost/student/
All lecture notes, grades, and
handouts can be obtained from WesternOnline.
ADA
policy: “In accordance with University
policy and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), academic accommodations
may be made for any student who notifies the instructor of the need for an
accommodation. It is imperative that you take the initiative to bring such
needs to the instructor’s attention, as he/she is not legally permitted to
inquire about such particular needs of students. Students who may require
special assistance in emergency evacuations (i.e. fire, tornado, etc.) should
contact the instructor as to the most appropriate procedures to follow in such
an emergency. Contact Disability Support Services at 3092982512 for
additional services.”
Last modified August 22,
2007