Online reading assignment question: confusing Midterm 2 astronomy topics

Astronomy 210 Reading Assignment 12, fall semester 2011
Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo, CA

Originally uploaded by Waifer X

Wordle.net tag cloud for confusing topics covered in Midterm 2, generated by responses from Astronomy 210 students at Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo, CA (http://www.wordle.net/show/wrdl/4480693/Untitled).

Students have a weekly online reading assignment (hosted by SurveyMonkey.com), where they answer questions based on reading their textbook, material covered in previous lectures, opinion questions, and/or asking (anonymous) questions or making (anonymous) comments. Full credit is given for completing the online reading assignment before next week's lecture, regardless if whether their answers are correct/incorrect. Selected results/questions/comments are addressed by the instructor at the start of the following lecture.

List at least three words describing confusing subjects covered in class (up through this midterm). (Graded for completion.)

[Responses have been edited to consolidate related common subjects.]

Student responses
Sections 70158, 70160
redshifts, antimatter, matter
spiralarms, supernovae, darkmatter
stars evolution, blackholes, neutron stars
halolusters, bigbang, darkmatter
greenhouseeffect, platetectonics, quantummechanics
reionization, gaps, pairproduction
Sun photosphere chromosphere corona, spectra, stars evolution
Sun, atoms
bigbang, milkyway spiralarms
space, stars, darkmatter
fusion, nebulae, blackholes
spiralarms, antimatter, darkmatter
Jovian, parsecs, arcseconds
stars evolution, giants, mainsequence stars
lookbacktime, lighttravel
Wienslaw, StefanBoltzmann, darkmatter
fusion, density, nucleosynthesis
bigbang, spectrum, luminosity
supernovae, planets, platetectonics
planets formation atmospheres gases, stars formation, bigbang
darkmatter, blackholes, galaxies
Mercury Moon
bigbang universe, everything dontknow photons
stars evolution, darkmatter, lookbacktime
StefanBoltzmann redshift greenhouseeffect
fusion, parsecs, stars
parsecs, haloclusters, disk halo stars
spiralarms, galaxies, spiralarms
bigbang, stars, space
darkmatter, fusion, mainsequence stars
annihilation, recombination, reionization, nucleosynthesis, pairproduction
lightspeed, housepartymodel, mainsequence stars
haloclusters, spiralarms, terrestrial planets
stars evolution
galaxies, spiralarms, stars, stuff
stuff, giants, stuff

Describe your most confusing subject, and briefly explain why this subject confused you. (Graded for completion.)

The following are all of the student responses to this question, verbatim and unedited.
"The timeline of how the universe is believed to have been formed is confusing with all of the details that must be remembered"

"spiral arms are most confusing because i never fully understood how some parts of a galaxy are formed."

"massive star death, had trouble remembering each one"

"Globular clusters, I am unclear as to what they are and will have to read up about them before the midterm."

"I still don't understand how electrons jump up or emit."

"The things that I mentioned above this question are the main topics that are confusing to me. I just don't get it :/"

"the sun's layers, because they all are so close together and I had never thought of the sun as three separate things before."

"There was a lot to cover about the sun and how generally functions"

"The most confusing subject would be the Big Bang because it is hard to grasp how the universe began."

"Dark matter because we know it's there but don't know what it is."

"i get the all the concepts nothing pops out at me"

"I will be honest, the whole thing is confusing"

"big bang theory and the expansion of space"

"Spiral arm are confusing because I missed that day in class."

"There isn't anything that's super confusing."

"medium mass stars"

"It was kind of hard understanding and calculating the age of star and figuring out its lookback time."

"I just missed the lecture on supernova"

"I would say Wien's law and Stefan's law. I always seem to get stuck on mixing these two laws up and forgeting what the difference is between them."

"The origins of the universe is a bit confusing with having to indicate what created what with the photons indicating the mass of the universe."

"luminosity, temp, and size"


"Dont own the book."

"big bang, insane trying to imagine it"

"blackholes, it doesn't make sense that so much mass can be condensed into the same amount of space."

"I just need to learn more about them I'll study well"

"^ I always think I'm prepared for it, but the questions you ask always seem se=o detailed and i don't have all the answers. I'm trying to hard."

"the birth life and death of stars for some reason just confuses me."

"I dont think anything will be that confusing"

"I had to make sure to memorize the equation for the Stephan-Boltzmann Law. It's not always easy to remember off-hand."

"To me a confusing subject was at what time what part of our galaxy we will be able to see"

"The essay questions"

"The disc and halo stars is the most confusing to me because of the different terms for both of them in the book."

"It's hard to explain why the galaxy is flat and wide. The milky way is also a tough subject to describe."

"how far things are..."

"fusion just gets confusing with the protons and how they work"

"remebering all the steps in each pase of each stars life and the big bang"

"my most confusing subject black radiation. i didn't get much out of the book about it."

"The light speed threw me off guard with the years and detail of the telescopes."

"How the spiral arms in galaxies form. I just don't get it"

"I couldn't touch any of it.. i'm a hands on learner"

"vague questions posed on exams."

"I'm confused about some of the galaxy swirls and arms and how to tell if the shape based on those."

"progression of stars sooo much memorization"

1 comment:

Patrick M. Len said...

Astronomy 210 Reading Assignment 12, fall semester 2011
Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo, CA

Student responses (raw, unedited, unconsolidated)
Sections 70158, 70160

Redshift, antimatter, matter
spiral arms, supernova, dark matter
massive star death, black hole, neutron start,
Globular Clusters, Big Bang Theory, Dark Matter
Greenhouse effect, plate tectonics, and how electronics jump up.
Reionization, Gaps, and Pair production.
sun layers, spectra, and star age
I would say The sun and sun atoms
Big Bang, Milky Way Spiral Arms
Space, stars, darkmatter
not to sure
fusion, nebula, black hole
SpiralArms, AntiMatter, DarkMatter
Jovan, Parsec, Arc Second
lefetimes.giant.main sequence
lookback time, light travel
supernova type one and two
Wien's law, Stefan's law, Dark matter
Fusion, density, nucleosynthesis.
bigbang, spectrum, luminosity
stuff I missed while skipping class.
formation of atmospheric gases, timing of formation, big bang
darkmatter, blackholes, galaxy
mercury and moon
Beginning of the Universe, what are we supposed to know?! All the photons to whatevers?!
stars life spans, dark matter, look back time
I dont think anything will be that confusing
Stefan-Boltzmann redshift greenhouse-effect
Making research questions and seeing how detailed they are
parsecs, globular clusters, disc vs halo stars
Spiral, galaxy, arms....
big bang, stars, space
dark matter, fusion, different mass stars
the terms and phases of the big bang
i, don't, know
light speed, house party, massive stars
Globular clusters, spiral arms, terrestrial planets
determining older vs. newer stars
nothin at all.
Galaxies, swirls, some star stuff
stuff, yellowgiants, other stuff