Exploring Stars and the Milky Way

AST80004 12.5 Credit Points Off-Campus


  • 1 Semester

Contact hours

  • Nil hours





Aims and objectives

This Unit aims to provide an introduction to the birth, life and death of stars and the structure of our Galaxy. The emphasis will be on conceptual astronomy rather than mathematical techniques.
Objectives (Unit Learning Outcomes)

Students who successfully complete this unit will be able to:

1. Identify the way stars are classified and recognise the approaches used to discover their properties

2. Explain and summarise the principles involved in the life cycle of stars, from protostar to stellar remnants

3. Appraise and state the basic principles and concepts about our Galaxy and its constituents (stars, protostars, stellar remnants, gas clouds, dark matter) in a non- technical way understandable to the wider public

4. Judge the limits of our understanding of our place in the Galaxy, and interpret the role of dark matter in modern astronomical theories

5. Use problem solving skills to explain and synthesise solutions to problems in stellar astronomy

6. Design and create an essay on an astronomy topic, assessing and critiquing current knowledge, using credible sources of astronomical information and research articles

Courses with unit

Master of Science (Astronomy)