Credits: 3

Schedule: 08.01.2019 - 09.04.2019

Contact information for the course (applies in this implementation): 


Anne Lähteenmäki, professor, D.Sc. (Tech.)
Aalto University Metsähovi Radio Observatory & Department of Electronics and Nanoengineering;

Joni Tammi, staff scientists, Ph.D. (Astronomy)
Aalto University Metsähovi Radio Observatory;

Course assistant

Niko Aarnio,

Teaching Period (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

III-IV 2018 - 2019 (spring)
III-IV 2019 - 2020 (spring)

Learning Outcomes (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

After the course the student can describe the physical background behind the basic celestial phenomena and knows how to take the movement of the Sun and the stars into account in engineering, design and architectural projects. The student recognises the astronomical nature of various historical and architecturally and otherwise significant constructions, ranging from the Stonehenge to sundials and modern observatories. She is able to describe the basics of the current scientific worldview and understands how it has been built over the millennia, and has basic knowledge of the interplay between astronomy and arts, as well as the influence on society and culture in general. 

Content (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

Basic astronomical concepts; influence of astronomy and space sciences to history, civil engineering, architecture and art, and to science and culture in general. For further studies the course ELEC-E4530 Radio astronomy is recommended.

Details on the course content (applies in this implementation): 

After the course the student should be able to:

  1. Characterise the
    major mileposts in the development of the modern
    astronomical world-view, both from the modern and the contemporary
  2. Relate celestial events (including the everyday phenomena) to their astronomical and physical origin, and have the basic vocabulary for seeking more information for further studies and applications.
  3. Recognise the
    astronomical background of various constructions (ranging from the
    Stonehenge to sundials and modern observatories), including non-physical
    constructs like the calendar.
  4. Illustrate the influence and interplay of astronomy and the society (culture, religion, arts, etc.) in the past as well as today.
  5. Put into cosmological perspective (a)
    our place in the universe, (b) the scientific and technological
    development and future challenges in the fields related to astronomy and
    space research, (c) and the development and limits of the modern
  6. Become aware of their strengths and weaknesses in learning, and gain
    in self- and peer assessment, and giving feedback.
material and assignments are structured for each week separately. In
particular, all assignments related to a specific week can be found
under that week's page. Weekly pages are made available one at a time,
with preliminary work (to be done before the lecture of that week)
coming available a week before the lecture, and after-the-lecture work
coming available after each lecture. Details can be found on the page How the course works.

Lecture timetable can be found at on the page Course timeline.

Assessment Methods and Criteria (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

Assessment methods: The course consists of lectures, homework, learning diaries, peer assessment, and excursion.

Elaboration of the evaluation criteria and methods, and acquainting students with the evaluation (applies in this implementation): See the page How the course works.

Workload (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

Lectures (30 h), assignments (32 h), and the learning diary (20 h).

Details on calculating the workload (applies in this implementation): 

See the page How the course works.

Study Material (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

Online material provided during the course.

Details on the course materials (applies in this implementation): 

See the page How the course works.

Course Homepage (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020):

Grading Scale (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 


Registration for Courses (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 


Further Information (valid 01.08.2018-31.07.2020): 

language class 3: English

Details on the schedule (applies in this implementation): 

Lecture timetable can be found at on the page Course timeline.

Final deadline for all course-related work is Tuesday 9.4.2019 at 14:15. The grades and credits are expected by 30.4.2019.


Registration and further information