Astro 101: The Solar System

In Astronomy 101: The Solar System, we explore the following topics in nine lessons:

  • Celestial motions of Earth, the sun, the moon, and the planets
  • The nature of light
  • Ground- and space-based telescopes
  • Comparative planetology
  • Earth and the moon
  • Terrestrial and gas planets and their moons
  • Dwarf planets, asteroids, and comets
  • Planetary system formation
  • Extrasolar planets
  • The search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI)

For a summary of each lesson, and links to video lectures, supplementary notes, and sample questions, click here.

Each lesson features video lectures by Prof. Reichart, organized into playlists on Skynet University’s YouTube Channel, as well as here.  If you are taking Astronomy 101: The Solar System without completing the assignments for a certificate, you can proceed to the video lectures now.

If you are taking Astronomy 101: The Solar System for a certificate, you first need to register with WebAssign, a benefit corporation with whom we have partnered to produce and administer our interactive assignments, as well as to package these with supplementary materials.  Although not required, the following textbook is also recommended.

The course is self-paced.  WebAssign automatically grades each question as you answer it, and offers an explanation of the correct answer.  Answer 50% of the questions correctly and receive a Certificate of Completion at the end of the course.  Answer 75% correctly and receive a Certificate of Mastery.

To enroll, click here!


Educators:  If you are interested in using this course, or components of it, at your institution, click here, or email us at introastro at unc dot edu.

Note:  Astronomy 101: The Solar System should be taken before Astronomy 102: Stars, Galaxies, and Cosmology.