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21st Century Astronomy: Stars and Galaxiesby Laura Kay
Synopses & Reviews
Authors Laura Kay and Stacy Palen have developed pedagogy that helps students understand the process of science, and how physical principles are used to discover the origins of the universe. The authors emphasize how we know what we know in the figures, text, and end-of-chapter material.
Book News Annotation:
The textbook is for an introductory astronomy course that may be the only science course many of the students take, and is designed to provide information about the field of astronomy and about stars and galaxies that will be useful and interesting to people leading lives outside of science. Each chapter tells a story, and all the chapters are linked with a few common threads. The mathematics have been moved from the main text into Math Tools boxes that instructors can choose whether or not to use. Among the topics are patterns in the sky--motions of Earth, the tools of the astronomer, star formation and the interstellar medium, relativity and black holes, galaxies, and the large-scale structure of the universe. Annotation ©2014 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (protoview.com)
Teaches students to think like scientists.
About the Author
Laura Kay is Ann Whitney Olin professor and chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Barnard College, where she has taught since 1991. She received a BS degree in physics from Stanford University, and MS and PhD degrees in astronomy and astrophysics from the University of California- Santa Cruz. She studies active galactic nuclei, using ground-based and space telescopes. She teaches courses in astronomy, astrobiology, women and science, and polar exploration.Stacy Palen received her bachelor's degree from Rutgers University in 1993 and her PhD from the University of Iowa in 1998. Upon graduation she spent four years as a post-doc/lecturer at the University of Washington, where she taught introductory astronomy 20 times in four years. This experience enabled her to really focus on students' conceptual difficulties with the course material, and experiment with ways to address them. Her astronomical research has focused on multi-wavelength studies of dying sun-like stars. She has also conducted research in the teaching and learning of astronomy, and served on multiple national committees that promote astronomy through education and public outreach. Currently, she is an Associate Professor at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah. In addition to the usual professorial duties, she also runs the Ott Planetarium, an astronomy outreach center that produces planetarium content for all ages. She lives on a small farm with her husband, two dogs, two dairy goats, four horses, and an ever-changing number of chickens.Bradford Smith, who studies solar system cosmogony and stellar astronomy, is affiliated with the Institute for Astronomy at the University of Hawaii.George Blumenthal is professor of astronomy and astrophysics at the University of California, Santa Cruz. He studies a wide range of topics including cosmology, dark matter, and the origin of structure in the Universe.
What Our Readers Are Saying
Science and Mathematics » Astronomy » General