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NovaeSci

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Nebula (2/19)

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  1. I'm basically looking for some Pop-Sci books in Astro and Cosmology. Sometimes your brain can get fried constantly learning the maths, then applying it the Astrophysical models. So, I'm just looking for some things to read on my work commutes that don't require me to get out a pencil and paper, or have to refer to other parts. Something that reads fluidly. I already own all of Brian Greene, Michio Kaku and Brian Cox's books, along with Origins by Neil DeGrasse Tyson (need to get his other books) but looking for more Astro based, compared to straight Physics. Any recommendations? Something that's a fascinating read of course. Kind of like the series How the Universe Works, but in book format
  2. I never even noticed this response. I only noticed because I came back to re-read things, ha! Regarding the maths at Level 3, how is the maths introduced for these modules, or did that require extra learning outside of the course? Just unsure if it's included in the modules, or you get pointed towards additional reading. Unless you're just assumed to know regardless, so could be quite the shock for students? I'm looking forward to the Investigations in Astronomy and due to wanting to end up with a career of academia, I want to get as many opportunities to research as I can. Do you think this module is a good way to take away what you've learnt and apply it to your own topics of research you can study at home and publish on your own blog? I mean in the way that it gives you the tools on how to organise your research in to topics that may interest you and guide you to writing up an article about it. obviously nothing ground breaking, but always additional ammo to fill out your blog with academic material that you can point to at a later date when applying to grad school to show you are active. Obviously by the time you reach grad school, you will have a much more extensive knowledge base and research skills. But no harm in honing skills along the way. With Liverpool, do you think it's just that at Master's level, they usually expect you to be more independent? Or do you think something just didn't sit right? I potentially want to progress on to a MSc by Research. That's another reason I chose this course over a Physics course: I know it Astro I want to aim for and I'd rather avoid hardly studying Astro for the next 6 years, then trying to cram it all in a year. I want to leave the BSc with extensive knowledge of Astrophysics and reasearch skills to be able to study the MSc by Research, as apposed to cramming a lot in to a taught masters. Plus, they cost like half the price, ha.
  3. Thanks again for your insight and advice. It's been very helpful All the best with your future studies.
  4. Regarding the mathematics in The Milky Way, did you get taught the maths need prior to, or along with, the course? Or do they expect you to teach yourself the suitable maths before you start studying? If so, is there any direction for this, or does it just come as a surprise? Regarding Energy, Matter and the Universe, does this course have all the physics and maths in the course notes, or did you find you had to look on the online library quite a lot? Regarding grades, I believe in the UK, your final grade with the degree is only calculated from the Level 2 and Level 3 courses. What would you say has been your favourite course as of yet? I'm excited to study Introduction to Cosmology.
  5. I've always enjoyed maths and been quite a natural at it. I nearly went for the Mathematics and Physics degree at The Open Uni. I just chose this degree as I didn't fancy spending the next 6 years studying no Astro related modules. There is maths involved in the course, but I own KA Stroud's Engineering Mathematics, which I'm working through - I believe it takes you to the end of the second year in an Engineering degree. But I also own both the Mathematical Methods books by Boas and Riley, which I intend to go on to after Stroud's textbook. So I'm positive my maths will be up to par. I'm currently about to start learning Calculus. I'll most likely buy the Open University books on eBay as well. I intend to use the 4 month summer breaks (mid-May to mid-Sept) to learn new branches of maths. I kind of want to graduate this degree with a high level of mathematical competency. I'd like to do my dissertation on Black Holes or Dark Matter; however, this may change as I study more branches of Astrophysics. I'm lucky as I actually do have the time alongside my job. But I guess only time will tell. It's a joy for me studying Astronomy, so never feels like work.
  6. In 'Energy, Matter and the Universe', how much physics and maths do you end up learning? Is it mainly A-Level level, or does it go in to University level? I also hear it feels more like a 30 credit course, rather than 20 credits, if there is any truth in that? I have the recommended books 'Engineering Mathematics' and 'Principles of Physics', and I wondered how much does the course refer you to these books, along with how much of the books do they cover? Is it just selective parts, or does the module cover a great deal of info from the book? One I'm interested in is 'Investigations in Astronomy'. Would you say this provides the student with a good foundation in scientific writing and research skills? What did you get a choice of doing as well? I plan on doing 3 modules each year and possibly maybe studying the Dissertation in a year by itself. But that's a bit of a way off yet. Thanks again for the response
  7. There is a Physics/Mathematics modules in the first year, and the last year is very heavily mathematics based, covering things like Advanced Astrophysics, Relativity and Cosmology. I'm already half way through K.A. Stroud's Engineering Mathematics and I have a selection of books from Boas, Riley, etc. on more advanced mathematics anyway. The KA Stroud mathematics book is what is used in the first year, alongside Principles of Physics. I already did my research and many students have gone on in to PG Masters such as Physics, Astrophysics and even Theoretical Physics - even courses at Oxford and Cambridge. There are a fair few who have actually gone straight in to PhDs in the same fields, including Theoretical Physics. I will be filling in any maths, anyway. The courses I posted are just the basic ones. It's a pretty full on degree. The good thing is is that it is very focussed on scientific writing/essays, and provides around half a dozen modules that is based on research, so plenty of opportunities to learn how to research effectively to prepare you for PG study/research. I've actually read a few dissertations from past students and one was actually on the theory of General Relativity. From what I've spoken to past students about, the course would be better named an Astrophysics degree, due to Astronomy giving the impression it's just basic observational stuff. It's quite heavily grounded in theory. Astronomy and Astrophysics seems to pretty much be used interchangeably, these days. I would actually like to go on to a MSc by Research after the degree, which Glasgow University do. But there are many opportunities around the UK. Cardiff, especially, seems to have a great Astrophysics/Cosmology department which are doing a lot of research in the areas I'd like to. I guess I'll definitely learn a lot from this forum over the coming years I'm actually starting a blog on my study journey, so hopefully may help future students to have a good idea of the course.
  8. Well the Astronomy degree I'm mainly doing as a foundation for further study in Astrophysics. But I do definitely intend, after getting to know the night-sky pretty well, to upgrade to a telescope and start trying some Astro-Photography. I've already messaged Ayrshire and Glasgow Astronomical Societies regarding joining; however, with still being in this lockdown, nothing has really materialised yet. I will be spending many years studying and devoting all my time and effort in to it, so I know down the line I'm going to be spending in to the thousands of pounds on equipment. But, I guess that's a knowledge base I'll develop over the coming years. The binoculars you mentioned seem to be pretty well priced. I was originally looking at Celestron TrailSeeker 8x42 Binoculars, which are around £150, but has great reviews and meant to have a good field of vision.
  9. The module which goes in to UV, Optical and IR Astronomy is below. "In this module you will develop your understanding of techniques and processess that underlie astronomical observations. You will learn about the effects of the Earth’s atmosphere on observations, telescopes, the uses of photometry, and how detectors including CCD work. You will also develop your skills in practical observing and simple data reduction, using your own equipment or commonly available resources from the Internet. Here you will carry out practical aspects of photometry and CCD imaging which will be written up as an assessed experimental report." https://studyastronomy.com/dlastro/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/AA2053_2017.pdf So the degree definitely provides a good grounding in the topic of observation. You also get multiple opportunities to make use of the telescope at Alston Observatory.
  10. Hi all, Thanks for your advice. The first module is just an Introduction to Astronomy. One of the topics covered half way through the module is in fact Telescopes; however, the first module is just a way to ease you in by giving you a basic overview of topics, in which will eventually go into much deeper detail over the course of the degree. There actually is a full module dedicated to UV, Optical and IR Astronomy. To quote a passage for the first exercise at the beginning of the module: "The aim of this exercise is to introduce you to observing the night sky. First you will locate and recognise the prominent constellations using the naked eye. This will lead on to targets suitable for observing with binoculars or telescope, if you have them available." So you don't actually need either at first. I'm just thinking binoculars will be a good addition to expand my knowledge of naked eye viewing. I'd eventually get a telescope, of course. The course is UCLAN's BSc (Hons) in Astronomy. The description of the first module says: "In this module you will study both observational and theoretical aspects of astronomy, including the night sky, telescopes, stars, stellar lifetimes and energy sources, galaxies and cosmology. You do not need to have your own telescope or binoculars to complete this module. This is the module we use to introduce students to the central ideas of astronomy at first year university level. It takes a quantitative scientific approach and you will need to use maths to solve problems from the outset." https://studyastronomy.com/dlastro/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/AA1051_2017.pdf I will definitely give Binocularsky a good read
  11. Hi Beka, What courses have you completed/enrolled on, up to now? Just trying to get as much info; but, there doesn't seem to be many people to talk to about the course. All the best, Michael
  12. Hi all, I'm currently embarking on my Astronomy journey by studying a BSc in Astronomy. I've read in the course notes, that binoculars, are best for a beginner; so, I think before investing in a telescope, I'm considering binoculars - I feel they will be more practical to get to know the night sky, in more detail, to ease me in. Plus, all I need is binoculars, at most, for my first module. What are a good set of all-around binoculars, for a beginner? I'm happy to spend up to £150 - maybe more depending. I'm not really all too familiar on prices; so, I'm hoping around that amount, can get me a good set? Thanks in advance for your advice Michael EDIT: I forgot to add that I did some research and it seems 10x50 are the best for beginners; however, I've seen a review recommend the Celestron TrailSeeker 8x42 Binocular, as number one, for beginners, due to sharper and brighter images. Also, it's meant to provide a wider field of view. If anyone can chip in? (link below) https://www.space.com/26021-best-binoculars.html
  13. Hey all, I've been on here for about a month, but only posted one topic. I thought would be good to introduce myself. My name is Michael, I'm age 31; originally from Manchester, now living in Scotland. I'm currently embarking on a BSc in Astronomy. The hope is to finish it, then move on to a MSc, then a PhD - hopefully followed by Post-Grad Research. I may be able to bypass the MSc, but one step at a time, ha! I've been interested in the Universe since school, but I'm sorry to say I don't have much practical experience in Astronomy; I have more theory knowledge. I am, however, willing to learn as much as I can, about the practical side. Anyways all my best, Michael
  14. Hi Michael, That would be great to hear some feedback Thank you
  15. Hi all, Apologies for the late response. Thank you to all for your messages, it's greatly appreciated! Von - you said you had done the BSc in Astronomy? Another reason which swayed me from the Open Uni is that most of it is textbook and exams, with not a lot of chances to practice academic writing and research skills as much as I'd like. How would you rate the BSc Astronomy in terms of the coursework they set and the research opportunity potential, etc? Did you get to pick your own Dissertation? Also, regarding the Maths and Physics content, how much would you say there is compared to a Physics/Astrophysics degree? I hear that even though it's called a BSc in Astronomy, it would be more aptly named BSc in Astrophysics. What did you find you was lacking between the transition from BSc to MSc as well? I'm sorry to hear about your experience with your MSc. I've been highly considering doing a MSc by Research in Astrophysics. That's why I'm hoping I can finish this degree with some good research skills under my belt. Thanks again Von and to everyone else :) Michael
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