This course will introduce students to the field of astrobiology -- the scientific search for life in the Universe. This interdisciplinary course will include aspects of the fields of astronomy, biology, physics, geology and chemistry, as well as history and social interest in the human condition. Topics will include (although not be limited to) the origin of life in the Universe; the evolution of life on Earth; current science missions on searching for life; the search for extraterrestrial intelligence; and human exploration beyond our planet. All topics will stem from a scientific basis, integrating relevant historical and contemporary social and cultural issues. Lectures will be a mix of slides and video, discussion, and student-led presentation of astrobiology in the news. Credit for AST 1001 or AST 1002 recommended but not required.
Spring 2019, Spring 2018, Spring 2017, Spring 2016