ASTRO 101: Your Questions and Our Answers

We will post questions and answers to general and procedural questions about the class here. When in doubt, look at the syllabus; it is likely to have the answer to your question.

Do I need to buy the text book or lab book for the class?

The text is recommended for reading before and after lecture and to help with homework and studying for the tests. You can share a textbook with a friend in the class if that is practical for you.

You must buy the lab book because you will be using the pages in the book when you do the lab, tearing them out of the book and turning them in. There is no option to share the lab book and you may not use photocopied pages from someone else's lab book.

Do I need to go to lecture?

I highly recommend that you attend lecture. I provide the lecture slide set in electronic form to you in ELMS just before the start of each lecture; BUT, the lecture slides DO NOT contain every word that I say in lecture. Lecture will explain the slides, provide examples and demonstrations which illustrate concepts, stress the most important concepts, and, of course, allow you to ask questions. You are reponsible for knowing what is presented in lecture.

As an incentive, or reward/punishment depending on your viewpoint, there are lecture exercises worth a total of 40 points over the semester. The homeworks are also due at the beginning of lectures.

Do I need to go to discussion and Lab?

It is highly recommended that you attend discussion. Discussion will strengthen your understanding of the major lecture concepts and prepare you for the lab each week. In addition there are exercises in every discussion class. The exercises account for 60 points of your grade; getting a zero out of 60 would reduce your grade by about 3/4ths of a letter grade.

You must attend in the lab in order to be able to do the labs. The labs are worth 165 points in total. If you don't do any labs the highest possible grade you could get (if you aced everything else ) would be a C. Why do that to yourself?

What do I do if I miss a class?

If you have a valid excuse for missing a lecture, discussion or lab and your know ahead of time, even 1 hour ahead of time, you should email your TA at the address here or email . You should then arrange with the TA to make up for missed work.

If you have a valid excuse for missing a class and know well ahead of time, for example a university sponsored event where you are a participant, a health related appointment, etc, contact your TA a week (or more) in advance to make arrangements for making up work.

If you have a valid excuse and forget to email your TA in advance, do so as soon as possible after missing the class. If you delay more than a week in contacting your TA, we will need a valid excuse for the delay.

We will not let you make up work from "weeks ago" unless you have a valid excuse for your extended absence. Even in this case, we need to wonder why you did not email your TA during the absence to inform them of the situation. There are few real life scenarios in which you are physically unable to email for periods of weeks.

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