Topics: Universe, General relativity, Dark matter Pages: 4 (664 words) Published: September 24, 2014
Astronomy/Origins 2B03
“The Big Questions”

“Big Questions”
-The past and future of the universe

Lectures: Mon, Wed, Thurs@ 5:30
+ your Tutorial section

-The nature of space and time
-The formation of the elements
- Life in the universe

The theme:
Ultimate questions in modern science

There is a new enthusiasm in science for
tackling the major frontier questions:
Science magazine special issue (July 2005):
- What is most of the universe made of (dark energy)?
- Can the laws of physics be unified to one concept?
- Are we alone in the universe?
- How and where did life on Earth arise?
- What’s beneath quantum uncertainty? anything?
- Is ours the only universe?
- What is the nature of black holes?
- What is gravity? What is time?

Where did we come from and how?
How does the process of scientific discovery work?


No textbook (none exists !!!), and no Coursepack.
I-Clicker! - make sure you have one for next week!
Our Avenue2Learn site for the course is your key
resource. Learn how to log on to it immediately and
look around to see what’s there.

Participation is a key element of this course.
-Small tutorial groups for individual discussions each
week (“Questions of the Week”)
-Projects: short presentation in your discussion group

Welcome to Astronomy/Origins 2B03
“The Big Questions”
Your instructor:
Dr. Christine Wilson – astrophysics, relativity, cosmology

- Keep an individual journal on the Avenue to learn site
-Respond with your thoughts and questions (through the
Avenue site) to the weekly topics

Jeremy Webb (Head TA)
Special guest lecturers & a team of excellent TAs!

Your tutorial group meetings start Sept. 10th!

A bit about me …
- Professionally I am an “observational astronomer”.
My main interests are gas and star formation in galaxies.
I work primarily with radio and far-infrared data.

A bit about the course

- I’ve been a professor at McMaster for 22 years.

- Focus...
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