The University of Edinburgh seems to be leading the online teaching of space topics, with the Astrobiology class I’ve taken in the past, and now this: AstroTech: The Science and Technology behind Astronomical Discovery offered for free on Coursera. The design of the course is interesting. Each week for 6 weeks, a new topic from astronomy is explained, and then they talk about the technology that is used to do the experiments: telescopes, CCD’s, spectrographs, and the like. It also touches on the math of those measurements, although the course simplifies it for us. And then a discussion of the future technology advances in each area.
It’s a well-structured format. It’s nice to have consistency from week-to-week. The videos are short and to the point, and the quizzes also reflect this approach by only having 5 questions each week. This is a nice little course for anyone interested in space, and is easily manageable in an hour or so per week.
The videos were well done – nothing fancy. Just the professors talking about and demonstrating the technology. I can’t find fault with anything they did here.
Let me know in the comments if you have taken this course, and what you thought.