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University Bulletin

Undergraduate Degree Programs

Science, Eberly College

Planetary Science and Astronomy

University Park, Eberly College of Science (PASTR)

Professor Donald Schneider, Chair

Planetary Science and Astronomy majors will study the Earth system in the context of the Solar System and the universe as a whole.  Students will apply methods and knowledge from mathematics, geosciences, chemistry, biology, astronomy and physics, and through laboratory experiences and coursework they will both learn to explore the Earth and to use telescopes to obtain astronomical data.  They will study planetary systems around other stars and explore the possibility of their harboring life.   Communication of these topics, both oral and written, to the public and to their peers will be emphasized, as will logic and general problem-solving skills.  Upon graduation students will be prepared to enter a graduate program in education to obtain teaching certification, to work in an informal science venue or planetarium, or to enter a variety of industry, environmental, or defense professions.


In order to be eligible for entrance to the Planetary Science and Astronomy major, a student must have:  1)  Attained at least a 2.00 cumulative grade-point average; 2) Completed Math 140 with a grade of C or better; 3) Completed at least four of the following courses with a grade of C or better: ASTRO 120, ASTRO130, ASTRO 140, BIOL 110, CHEM 110, EARTH 002, GEOSC 001, GEOSC 020, or STAT 200.

A minimum of 122 credits is required to earn the degree.

Scheduling Recommendation by Semester Standing given like (Sem: 1-2)

GENERAL EDUCATION: 45 credits
(18 of these 45 credits are included in the REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR)
(See description of General Education in front of the Bulletin)

FIRST-YEAR SEMINAR:
(Included in General Education course selection)

UNITED STATES CULTURES AND INTERNATIONAL CULTURES:
(Included in General Education course selection)

WRITING ACROSS THE CURRICULUM:
(Included in General Education course selection or REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR)

REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR:  95-99 credits
(This includes 18 credits of General Education courses: 9 credits of GN courses; 6 credits of GQ courses; 3 credits of GWS courses)

PRESCRIBED COURSES: 37 credits
BIOL 110 GN(4)[1], CHEM 110 GN(3)[1], CHEM 111 GN(1), CHEM 112 GN(3)[1], CHEM 113 GN(1), ENGL 202C GWS(3), MATH 140 GQ(4)[1], MATH 141 GQ(4) (Sem:  1-4)
ASTRO 401(4)[1], ASTRO 402(3)[1], BIOL/GEOSCL 474(3)[1], STAT 200 GQ(4)[1] (Sem: 5-8)

ADDITIONAL COURSES: 38-39 credits
Select 3 credits from ASTRO 001 GN(3), ASTRO 005 GN(3), ASTRO 006 GN(3), ASTRO 291 GN(3) (Sem: 1-4)
Select 3-4 credits from CMPSC 101 GQ(3), CMPSC 121 GQ(3), CMPSC 201 GQ(3), CMPSC 202 GQ(3), CMPSC 203 GQ(4) (Sem: 1-6)
Select 9 credits from ASTRO 120 GN(3), ASTRO 130 GN(3), ASTRO 140 GN(3), ASTRO 292 GN(3) (Sem: 1-6)
Select 3 credits from EARTH 002 GN(3), GEOSC 001(3), GEOSC 020 GN(3) (Sem: 1-4)
PHYS 211 GN(4) or PHYS 250 GN(4) (Sem: 3-6)
PHYS 212 GN(4) or PHYS 251 GN(4) (Sem: 3-6)
Select 12 credits from EARTH 100 GN(3), EARTH 103 GN(3), EARTH 106 GN(3), EARTH 150 GN(3), EARTH 202(3), GEOG 160 GS(3), GEOSC 201(4), GEOSC 202(4), GEOSC 203(4), GEOSC 204(4), METEO 101 GN(3), METEO 201(3) (Sem: 3-8)

SUPPORTING COURSES AND RELATED AREAS: 20-23 credits
At least 6 credits from the below categories must be at the 400 level
Select 11 credits in consultation with adviser from department list (Sem: 1-8)
Select 9-12 credits from program list of advanced electives (Sem: 3-8)

[1] A student enrolled in this major must receive a grade of C or better, as specified in Senate Policy 82-44

Last Revised by the Department: Spring Semester 2013

Blue Sheet Item #: 41-05-146

Review Date: 02/19/2013