Astronomy Minor

MINOR IN ASTRONOMY

STUDENTS INTERESTED IN ASTRONOMY CAN BE AWARDED A MINOR IN ASTRONOMY BY COMPLETING A ONE YEAR SURVEY COURSE IN ASTRONOMY PLUS ELECTIVE COURSES TO TOTAL 18 HOURS

A minor in astronomy shall consist of a minimum of eighteen hours of coursework, which must include two core courses. The core courses must consist of either Astronomy 1 (PHYS129) and Astronomy 2 (PHYS130), one year of Honors Astronomy, or PHYS206 (Planetary Astronomy) and PHYS311 (Stellar Astronomy). The elective courses can be chosen from HIST251 (The Cosmos in History to 1800), GEOL206 (Planetary Geology), PHYS101 (Introductory Physics), 102 (Introductory Physics), 201 (General Physics), 202 (General Physics), 205 (Intelligent Life in the Universe), 206 (Planetary Astronomy) [if not used as a core course], 298 (Special Topics), 301 (Classical Mechanics), 306 (Physical Optics), 311 (Stellar Astronomy) [if not used as a core course], 390 (Research), 399 (Tutorial), 412 (Special Topics), 413 (Astrophysics), 420 (Senior Research), and 499 (BachelorUs Essay). A maximum of three courses may be at the 100 level. Topics in PHYS298, 390, 399, 412, 420 and 499 must involve astronomy and must be approved by the astronomy minor program director. Students may not receive credit for both PHYS101 and 201, for both PHYS102 and 202, or for both PHYS129/130 and Honors Astronomy. Students must notify the astronomy minor program director prior to graduation to receive credit for the minor on their transcript.

The courses must be approved by the student's major advisor and the astronomy minor program director. The College requires a minimum 2.0 GPA in the courses which comprise the minor. The College also requires that at least nine hours in the minor must be at the 200 level or above and earned in residence at the College of Charleston. Physics and Astronomy majors are not eligible for a minor in astronomy, but are eligible for a concentration in astronomy (see program director, Prof. B. Lee Lindner).

With the addition in the past three years of several new astronomers, the College of Charleston has the strongest and broadest astronomy undergraduate department in the state. While the theme of Astronomy is often considered by those outside the field as narrow, it is in fact quite broad, covering biology (especially with life in the Universe), geology (especially in planetary surfaces), meteorology (especially in planetary atmospheres), chemistry (in the formation of the solar system and in interstellar gases), physics (in most of the courses), history (especially in archeo-astronomy) and philosophy and religion (especially in cosmology and the beginning of time). Students minoring in astronomy will be exposed to a wide variety of disciplines, which blends in well with the liberal education philosophy of the College of Charleston.

The minor as proposed would have 2 "tracks," one primarily for students who haven't taken calculus and the other primarily for students who have taken calculus, with supervision by the minor program director (students are free to mix courses between tracks if they so desire). For example, a student who hasn't taken calculus could choose from 9 algebra-based courses (History 251, Physics 101, 102, 129, 130, 205, 310, 311, and 390). A science major could choose from 11 calculus-based courses (Physics 201/202, 298, 301, 306, 390, 399, 412, 413, 420, and 499) for the 4 electives needed, and may include some of the algebra-based courses.

To have your transcript note credit for the astronomy minor, or if you have any questions about the astronomy minor, please see Prof. B. Lee Lindner, 143 Science Center (953-8288).