Discover our Solar System

Ref: C3671093

Our Solar System is our home yet is an incredibly diverse place. This course will explore the major and minor bodies that make up our Solar System and will include topics such as our life-giving Sun, the inner planets of Mercury and Venus. Mars. The outer planets of Jupiter and Saturn. Uranus and Neptune. Moons of the planets. Asteroids and Comets. If a clear night presents itself then the course topics will be adjusted to accommodate an observing evening if considered appropriate.

Course aim

This course will explore the many aspects of our understanding of what makes up our solar system

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is for beginners
  • This course is for improvers
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Appreciate the diversity that makes up our Solar System
  • The difference between the inner and outer planets
  • Why even the smallest moons, asteroids and comets are important in understanding our Solar System
  • Why our nearest star is the Sun and how it provides for life on our planet
  • How to view the planets and when/how to spot them

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • If a clear night presents itself then the course topics will be adjusted to accommodate an observing evening if considered appropriate.

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning
  • You will be encouraged to consider other students work and give your opinions and suggestions

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • It would be helpful if you had access to the internet (Mobile phone, tablet or computer at home or through a library etc.)

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required
  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Encouragement to attend or join a local or national astronomical society or club. Explore the latest news on planetary exploration via the internet.

Download full course outline

Discover our Solar System Course Outline

Enrolment Conditions

You can enrol online if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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