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Hi all , I am looking at participating in taking a OU course S282, I was hoping those who have taken up this course can help me in finding the right books to read and which would be the best modules and so on. Thanks guys

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Never done any OU but a friend did and the one thing that became apparent was get the books they refer to.

A good percentage of the questions expected the answer/conclusion as given in their book to be the answer that you gave, come to or arrive at.

Believe me if the book said the best way to observe was with your belly button painted blue, then you were expected to answer that the best way to observe was with a blue belly button :grin: :grin: :grin: . Check if the book referred to a particular shade :eek: :eek: :eek: .

S282 is a/the module so not sure about the bit- "and which would be the best modules and so on."

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I've done a number of OU courses in the past including the predecessor to S282, which was S281 Astronomy and Planetary Science. Usually the OU provides you with all the study materials you need and will tell you of any recommended books. The course you are considering is a level 2 module so you will need to have sound knowledge of physics and maths at the OU level 1 equivalent (you can test if you're ready for S282 here http://www.open.ac.uk/science/main/sites/www.open.ac.uk.science.main/files/files/ecms/science-pa/web-content/S282-06.pdf).Not quite sure what you mean by best modules as S282 is a module on it's own. Good luck with your studies and I'm sure you'll find the course as interesting and as stimulating as I did with S281. I was also lucky enough to have Professor Ian Morison from Jodrell Bank as my OU tutor during my S281 course. Cheers, Bob

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Thanks guys, sorry about the mistake, its S10 which I will be taking and S282 is in fact one of the modules, I have been interested in astronomy from being a young boy, now i am 47 I just want to broaden my knowledge more, I have taken a number of free on line courses and I think I am ready to push even further my doing an OU course. thanks again

Ronnie 

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Hi Ronnie,

I too am going to be doing the S10 course. Planning to enrole early next year (I believe the next enrolment date is February) I've been looking around and came across this book from Amazon. I'm not sure if it's anything to actually do with the OU Astronomy and Planetary Science course, but it may be a good pre-study guide. I'm thinking of buying it soon.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/052161855X/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?qid=1436797206&sr=8-1π=AC_SY200_QL40&keywords=planetary+science&dpPl=1&dpID=51hwFwjSS7L&ref=plSrch

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Hi Ronnie67

I've just finished S10.

The material you need all provided, each module is two text books and a DVD, you also access some info on-line.

Ronin hit the nail on the head, you either do it their way or fail. That is not a problem, it is probably the only way distance learning can work.

I did S282 first then S283. S282 is probably more of interest to star gazing but the latter one is all relevant.

It was the first time with OU for me, I thought as I'd registered for S10, that would be it, didn't click you have to register for each module on the pathway separately and so had a gap. I did S104 in between. (exploring science) as I'm now thinking of doing a full degree.

There is a seller on ebay selling the S282 course material. 

When I realised I'd have to wait a year to do S283, I bought some of the  old course books, which I only flicked through, they are a previous edition, you are welcome to them if you cover the postage.

I intend to keep the actual course books for reference, plus I use a highlighter on them as it saves making copious notes, it works for me.

I'd second bob1957's point about completing the OU online checker, "Ready for S282 ?" 

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Hi Avo thanks for all that, I am looking at enrolling in 10th October is the closing time for the course. So Jay T if you want to start the course we me you have until October to enroll, unless you are doing it next year . Avo I would very much appreciate those text books if you are sure you do not need them, I can then have a good read before starting. How do I cover the postage.

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I would like to've enrolled this year but I'm currently doing an NVQ level 2 and I don't think I'll have finished in time to start the Astronomy course. On top of a full time job, I think doing an NVQ and an OU course will probably be pushing it haha. I'll wait until February next year to sign up ;)

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Ronnie67

I'll package them up and see what it'll be.

PM me your postal address if that's no bother.

The books are The Solar system (part 2) and Astrobiology, these being 75% of the books for S283. They are a previous edition as the current books comprise 2 volumes to complete the course.

The material hasn't changed much, merely reflecting results from more recent space missions. It'll give you chance to see what the course is about.

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Good look on achieving your goal on a full degree, are you hoping to explore your knowledge or are you looking to change yr career, being 48 I think for me it's more of knowledge for me, expanding the brain cells, always been fascinating in space, however the only space I have exploded is the space between my ears lol.

On a serious note I would like to teach a small group, more of a club, where we can all sit and exchange our ideas and so on, so doing this course will be a great start, do you know coursera do loads of free astronomy courses, I have completed About three all together, you also get a certificate at the end of the course, but, they are not credited courses, but great fun, check it out

Ronnie

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I started S10 purely out of interest in astronomy and a personal challenge.

I've finished three modules now, there are highs and lows, the latter particularly around TMA (Assessment) submission time, however, I find after an exam I have a yearning to learn more.

I'm now 53 and work on a Ferry, this study is purely to keep the grey matter ticking over and once into the habit, the time found for study is not a problem. I read the books during free time at work, travelling etc. I have the books and in PDF format on a tablet. The trick is little and often.

I'm looking to enrol on Q64 pathway; BSc in Natural Science, I'll take the astro options.

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Excellent I might take your path after this one, I too have a great interest in astronomy, especially the cosmology side of things, I have been personally studying the black hole for a number of years and it's soooo fascinating

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I started out with the S281 module and enjoyed it so much I ended up doing a full Hons BSc in the OU. Go for it and see how you like it. Do not worry too much about text books. The materials supplied are excellent and you will be advised of any supplementary books that are required.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'll echo laudropb...

I started with S282/3 and ended up doing the full degree - just make sure your maths is up to scratch by looking at "Are you Ready for.." materials.

There's also a free Astrophysics prep 'module' that covers the main topics of S282/3!.  

Loved every minute and it opened up the whole Astronomy, Astrophysics and Cosmology universe.

It provided marvellous background and context to the subject and changed it into something far deeper.  Completely hooked, and engaged in several pro-am projects.

As for 'do it their way', yes - but having studied at three uni's they're all like that in my experience and it's such a big subject it's easy to get sidetracked.  You just don't have time for that.

Regards

Tony

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  • 3 weeks later...

I completed S282 in June. And am taking Planetary Science (S283?) in October. When you say you did the 'full degree', do you just mean enough points to get a 'OU degree'? I didn't think these modules were part of a specific degree and did wonder once you had enough points for the degree, what you would say your degree was in. For example, people have maths, physics degrees etc. But with these you can pick random modules right so wouldn't have a specific degree.

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mrjaffa

S282 and S283 are two of the second level modules as part of a Natural Science degree with astronomy.

The OU also offer them as the stand alone S10; Certificate in Astronomy and Planetary science. This can be transferred to a different pathway for the full degree.

See Q64 of the OU syllabus. 

Most modules are equal to 30 points, you need 360 for a full honours degree.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Ronnie, couldn't get through to reply to your email but.... cut and pasted from my emaii...

A. The sun's luminosity is 3.83 x 10^26 W. (Not sure what course you're doing
    but erg/s is unusual in modern physics courses and usually reserved for radio
    and cosmology). Begin by estimating the flux per square metre on Earth and
    then then take 10%. Assume the sun is a point source. Use the small angle
    approximation.

B. Use the small angle approximation for a target of 0.003m
    and angle of 0.5 arcsecs. Unless the course you're doing includes atmospheric
    aberration then ignore it!

C. Find out the limit of the Keck and then use
    the small angle approx again. (Dependent upon wavelength of course but assume
    500nm wavelength as being the middle of the visible spectrum and it'll work
    out around 1.22 x 500 nm all divided by the Keck's mirror diameter in centimetres).
    that gives you the separation to use the small angle formula. Hope this helps

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