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National College Credit Recommendation Service

Board of Regents  |  University of the State of New York | Evaluated Learning Experience

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Astronomy 101: Intro to Astronomy


Varies; self-paced. 

Various; distance learning format.

December 2012 – December 2022.

Instructional delivery format: 
Online/distance learning
Learner Outcomes: 

Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to: analyze contributions and major theories related to the study of astronomy in ancient and modern times; evaluate the basic features and motions of the night sky; assess and describe the theories related to the beginning, evolution and fate of the universe; explain how galaxies, including the Milky Way, are formed and distributed; distinguish types of galaxies and their properties; describe the formation and evolution of the solar system and its planets and bodies; identify and describe the major characteristics of the sun, planets, moons, and small bodies in the solar system, including meteoroids, asteroids, and comets; examine the formation, evolution, and death cycle of a variety of different star types; outline theories related to the origin of life and describe predictors of life on other planets; and analyze the physics of light and the electromagnetic spectrum and explain how telescopes can be used to detect and study both.


The course is self-paced and instruction is delivered through online video and text lessons. Students are assessed through quizzes and a proctored final exam. Topics include: the historical background of astronomy, the basics of astronomy, the physics of astronomy, understanding orbits in astronomy, the earth-moon system, the solar system, the inner solar system, gaseous planets in the solar system, comets, moons and asteroids, understanding the science of the sun, types of stars in the universe, formation and evolution of stars, stellar death and remnants, formation and structure of the milky way, properties and characteristics of galaxies, cosmology overview, relativity in space and time, overview of life in the universe, and tools and instruments for astronomy.

Credit recommendation: 

In the lower division baccalaureate / associate degree category, 3 semester hours in Earth Science; Environmental Science; or Cosmology (12/17).