Exploring Stars and the Milky Way is an online unit provided by Swinburne University of Technology and Open Universities Australia that aims to introduce you to the birth, life and death of stars, and the galaxy’s structure, using conceptual astronomy rather than mathematical techniques.
The unit is designed to teach astronomy concepts in an accessible and easy-to-understand manner, making it the ideal unit of study for star-gazing enthusiasts and newcomers to this scientific field. You will learn to understand the classification of stars, the methods used to identify their properties, and the various life cycles of a star from protostars to stellar remnants.
Finally, you will recognise the limits in our understanding of our place in the galaxy, and develop your awareness of the role of dark matter in modern astronomical theories.
In order to enrol in this unit, you cannot have completed it, or an academic equivalent before, and you must be accepted into one of the following courses:
Graduate Certificate of Science (Astronomy)
Graduate Diploma of Science (Astronomy)
Master of Science (Astronomy)
Areas of study
In the Exploring Stars and the Milky Way unit, the topics you will study include:
The bulk properties and structure of the Sun
Distance, magnitudes, colours and luminosity of stars
Spectral lines and spectral types of the stars
The interstellar medium and the birth of stars
The Hertzsprung-Russell diagram and the ZAMS
Life on the main sequence, lifetime and mass-luminosity relations
Evolution of a solar mass star: red giants, planetary nebulae and white dwarfs
Supernovae, supernovae remnants and creation of the elements
End products: neutron stars, pulsars, black holes
Gamma ray bursts: observations and theory
Binary star systems, open clusters and globular clusters
The structure of the Milky Way, the galactic centre, dark matter
This unit is a core requirement in the following courses:
Graduate Certificate of Science (Astronomy), Swinburne University
Graduate Diploma of Science (Astronomy), Swinburne University
Master of Science (Astronomy), Swinburne University
Content may also be relevant to other courses, and could qualify you for Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for a course offered by another institution.
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Want more information about this unit? Fill out the enquiry form to the right and a study consultant will contact you with the details you need.
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Exploring Stars and the Milky Way provides an essential introduction to astronomy, laying the foundation for further academic study into this scientific field of inquiry. It offers a comprehensive overview of the life cycle of stars and the structure of the galaxy, and does so in an accessible and easy-to-understand manner – allowing you to consider how complex scientific concepts can be communicated to the general public.
How else will I benefit from this unit?
Upon successful completion of this unit you will receive credit for competencies in Exploring Stars and the Milky Way from Swinburne University.
Studying online means you can study where you want, at your own pace.
Gain industry-relevant skills and transferrable knowledge.
Government financial support through FEE-HELP may be available.
Studying single units allows you the flexibility to work towards a qualification at your own pace.
Receive Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for this unit across a number of OUA’s full degree programs.
Get more information
Want more information about the career benefits of this unit? Fill out the enquiry form to the right and a study consultant will contact you with the details you need.
If you are an Australian citizen, you may be eligible to receive a government FEE-HELP loan, meaning you can defer payment of your fees.
Get more information
Want more information about financial and student support? Fill out the enquiry form to the right and a study consultant will contact you with the details you need.
You may be eligible to receive FEE-HELP for this course!
This course can be paid for through the FEE-HELP government loan scheme. If you are an Australian citizen or hold a permanent humanitarian visa, this means you don’t need to pay upfront.
Instead, the Australian government will pay your course fees on your behalf. You’ll begin repaying your loan through the tax system once you start earning more than the minimum threshold of $54,869 (2016-17 income year).
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