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Saturn from Cassini Astronomy 161:
An Introduction to Solar System Astronomy
Prof. Richard Pogge, MTWThF 9:30

Homework Assignments

There will be 5 homework assignments, as follows:
Homework Worksheet Handed Out Due Date Extras
1 Homework 1 [60kb PDF] Friday, Sept 22 Friday, Sept 29  
2 Homework 2 [27kb PDF] Monday, Oct 9 Monday, Oct 16 Solution set [60kb PDF]
3 Homework 3 [15kb PDF] Tuesday, Oct 24 Tuesday, Oct 31 Solution set [47kb PDF]
4 Homework 4 [29kb PDF] Monday, Nov 6 Monday, Nov 13 Solution set [94kb PDF]
5 Homework 5 [22kb PDF] Monday, Nov 20 Wednesday, Nov 29  

Each homework assignment consists of a short set of five (5) multiple-choice questions. The questions are open-book, open-notes, open-discussion. The answers must be returned on the bubble sheets provided in class on the due date.

Collectively the homework will count for 15% of the final grade, the equivalent of one in-class quiz, so doing well on the homework will help pull your grade up.

These are not practice exams, instead they are an opportunity for me to ask more challenging or involved questions than I can reasonably ask during a quiz or the final exam. These questions are designed to get you thinking about and discussing the course topics in an active way. I strongly encourage you to form study groups to discuss the questions among yourselves, but in the end you must decide on the final answers yourself (beware the perils of group-think, which can lead down the wrong path as often as not!).

We have your homework assignments graded and ready to hand back in class on the Wednesday following the due date. The exception is the last homework assignment, for which we hope to have them back to you by Thursday, Nov 30, 1 so you can use them to study for the Final Examl on Wednesday, December 6.

No Late Homework will be accepted.

"Late" means after the end of class (10:30am) on the due date. Exceptions will only be made for legitimate, documented emergencies.

Homework Grades

Unlike the exams, the 5 homework assignments are graded cumulatively: I add together the scores for the 5 assignments and then create a grade curve for the homework. This worked out to be roughly every 5 questions, or almost a straight percentage cut (sometimes a curve works that way).
Statistics [Raw Score]:
Mean: 16.78
Median: 18
Spread: 5.73

Grade Cutoffs [Raw Score]
A: 21-25
B: 16-20
C: 11-15
D: 6-10
E: 0-5

Grade Curve Plot (47k)
The red arrow indicates the median score and the green arrow indicates the arithmetic mean.

Legal Statement

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) prohibits me from posting any individual's results to the web. Instead, you will need to pick up your homework results in-person after class during the week following the due date up until the next in-class exam, and then thereafter they will only be available from the TA during his regularly scheduled office hours. FERPA rules prohibit us from allowing others to pick up results for you.


Return to: Astronomy 161 Homepage
Updated: 2006 December 4
Copyright Richard W. Pogge, All Rights Reserved.