FACULTY OF FINE ARTS AND DESIGN

Department of Architecture

GENS 212 | Course Introduction and Application Information

Course Name
History and Philosophy of Astronomy
Code
Semester
Theory
(hour/week)
Application/Lab
(hour/week)
Local Credits
ECTS
GENS 212
Fall/Spring
3
0
3
5

Prerequisites
None
Course Language
English
Course Type
Service Course
Course Level
First Cycle
Mode of Delivery -
Teaching Methods and Techniques of the Course -
Course Coordinator
Course Lecturer(s)
Assistant(s) -
Course Objectives This course will examine the history and philosophy of astronomy in a way accessible to students of all majors and levels. Commencing from prehistory, emphasis will be placed both on lessons learned from past scientific developments and on open issues to stress the dynamics of discovery, including dark matter and cosmological questions about the Big Bang and the “multiverse.” Analysis of the impact of astronomical research will consider industrial benefits, mention of the novel phenomenon of commercial space and societal change from the artistic, literary, and philosophical standpoints, including also science straying into metaphysics. The contribution given by women throughout history will be explicitly showcased to provide a balanced view. Finally we shall consider the colonization of Mars, the dream of interstellar exploration, and the history and philosophical implications of the possible discovery of alien life in the universe, including intelligent civilizations.
Learning Outcomes The students who succeeded in this course;
  • Will be able to analyze historical astronomy issues at the elementary quantitative level (arithmetic and basic geometry);
  • Will be able to draw conclusions about the challenges of scientific discovery and astronomy in particular by using basic knowledge;
  • Will be able to discuss critically the interaction of economic, social and cultural factors determining scientific progress;
  • Will be able to perform a literature review on historical astronomy.
  • Will be able to define the general characteristics of unfolding scientific developments.
Course Description

 



Course Category

Core Courses
Major Area Courses
Supportive Courses
Media and Management Skills Courses
Transferable Skill Courses

 

WEEKLY SUBJECTS AND RELATED PREPARATION STUDIES

Week Subjects Related Preparation
1 Introduction, the Solar System, our Universe No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: NASAS: Planets, Moons, Asteroids, Comets and Meteors. BSF: Part I; BSFWB: Ch. 1; PINLN
2 Prehistory, archeoastronomy, ancient Egypt No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: RMPI: pp 3-47; TESA: Ch. 4 PINLN
3 Basic naked-eye astronomy, observing the sky No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: PINLN
4 Babylonian mathematics and astronomy No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: TESA: Ch. 1-3, 5 PINLN
5 Greek philosophy and astronomy I No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: TESA: Ch. 6 HWP: Part I–The Presocratics PSC: Prologue PINLN
6 Greek philosophy and astronomy II No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: HWP: Part II–Socrates, Plato, Aristotle GINPTO PINLN
7 Midterm Review PINLN
8 The Middle Ages and Astronomy in Islam No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: PSC: Ch. 2 (Historical Perspectives) PINLN
9 The Copernican Revolution, Tycho, and Kepler No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: HWP: Bk 3, Pt. VI–The Rise of Science PINLN
10 Galileo, the telescope, Newton, and mechanics No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: PINGT; PSC: Ch. 3, 5 (gravitation) PINLN
11 Triumphs and failures. Einstein and relativity No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: PSC: Ch. 8, 9, 26 SGT: Part II PINLN
12 Current challenges, dark matter, cosmology, quantum gravity No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: SOSR: Ch. 9; LOSD: Ch. 1; FEYDS; PINEFBA; PINLN
13 Space exploration. The race to the Moon No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: NASARS: 1-26; BSFWB: Ch. 4; BSF: Ch. 9 PINLN
14 Exploring Mars. Interstellar space. Alien life No-advanced-math based concept summary and essential concepts from: BSFWB: Ch. 9; BSF: Ch. 13; NASAINS; ESAEXB: II.3; PINLN
15 Review PINLN
16 Final exam

 

Course Notes/Textbooks

NASA Science, Our Solar System, https://solarsystem.nasa.gov/solar-system/our-solar-system/overview/  : NASAS.

A. B. Chace, The Rhind Mathematical Papyrus (Vol. I) (Mathematical Association of America, Oberlin, Ohio, 1927): RMPI.

O. Neugebauer, The Exact Sciences in Antiquity (Dover Publications, New York, 1969): TESA.

B. Russel, History of Western Philosophy (George Allen and Unwin Ltd., Great Britain, 1947): HWP.

T. S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (The University of Chicago, Chicago, 1970): SOSR.

K. Popper, The Logic of Scientific Discovery (Routledge, London, 2005): LOSD.

P. Feyerabend, “How to defend society against science,” in Scientific Revolutions, Ian Hacking, Ed. (Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1981): FEYDS.

O. Gingerich, “Was Ptolemy a fraud?” Q. Jl. R. astr. Soc., 21, 253-266 (1980): GINPTO.

F. Pinto, “Giants’ Talk,” The Griffith Observer, 2-18, 9, 1992: PINGT.

A. Einstein, Relativity: The special and general theory (Methuen & Co Ltd, 1920): SGT.

G. W. Mason, Physical Science Concepts (BYU Univ. Press, 1997): PSC.

NASA, Adventures in Rocket Science (NASA, 2008): NASARS.

D. Doody and G. Stephan, Basics of Spaceflight: Learners’ Workbook  (JPL, 1995): BSFWB.

D. Doody, Basics of Spaceflight (JPL, 2011): BSF.

NASA, Mars InSight Launch Press Kit (2018): NASAINS.

F. Pinto, “Engines powered by the forces between atoms,” Am. Sci., 102, 280-289 (2014): PINEFBA.   

ESA, Exobiology in the Solar System & The Search for Life on Mars (1999): ESAEXB.

F. Pinto, Lecture Notes: PINLN.

Suggested Readings/Materials

-

 

EVALUATION SYSTEM

Semester Activities Number Weigthing
Participation
Laboratory / Application
Field Work
Quizzes / Studio Critiques
Portfolio
Homework / Assignments
Presentation / Jury
Project
2
40
Seminar / Workshop
Oral Exams
Midterm
1
20
Final Exam
1
40
Total

Weighting of Semester Activities on the Final Grade
3
60
Weighting of End-of-Semester Activities on the Final Grade
1
40
Total

ECTS / WORKLOAD TABLE

Semester Activities Number Duration (Hours) Workload
Theoretical Course Hours
(Including exam week: 16 x total hours)
16
3
48
Laboratory / Application Hours
(Including exam week: '.16.' x total hours)
16
0
Study Hours Out of Class
16
4
64
Field Work
0
Quizzes / Studio Critiques
0
Portfolio
0
Homework / Assignments
0
Presentation / Jury
0
Project
2
14
28
Seminar / Workshop
0
Oral Exam
0
Midterms
1
5
5
Final Exam
1
5
5
    Total
150

 

COURSE LEARNING OUTCOMES AND PROGRAM QUALIFICATIONS RELATIONSHIP

#
Program Competencies/Outcomes
* Contribution Level
1
2
3
4
5
1

To be able to offer a professional level of architectural services.

2

To be able to take on responsibility as an individual and as a team member to solve complex problems in the practice of design and construction.

3

To be able to understand methods to collaborate and coordinate with other disciplines in providing project delivery services.

 

4

To be able to understand, interpret, and evaluate methods, concepts, and theories in architecture emerging from both research and practice.

5

To be able to develop environmentally and socially responsible architectural strategies at multiple scales. 

6

To be able to develop a critical understanding of historical traditions, global culture and diversity in the production of the built environment.

7

To be able to apply theoretical and technical knowledge in construction materials, products, components, and assemblies based on their performance within building systems.

8

To be able to present architectural ideas and proposals in visual, written, and oral form through using contemporary computer-based information and communication technologies and media.

9

To be able to demonstrate a critical evaluation of acquired knowledge and skills to diagnose individual educational needs and direct self-education skills for developing solutions to architectural problems and design execution.

10

To be able to take the initiative for continuous knowledge update and education as well as demonstrate a lifelong learning approach in the field of Architecture.

11

To be able to collect data in the areas of Architecture and communicate with colleagues in a foreign language ("European Language Portfolio Global Scale", Level B1)

12

To be able to speak a second foreign language at a medium level of fluency efficiently.

13

To be able to relate the knowledge accumulated throughout the human history to their field of expertise. 

*1 Lowest, 2 Low, 3 Average, 4 High, 5 Highest

 


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