1. Concepts 2. Solar System Origin 3. Planetary Processes 4. Earth Processes 5. Meteorites
6. Our Moon 7. Remote Sensing 8. Mercury 9. Mars 10. Venus, Our Twin
11. Jupiter & Jovian Moons 12. Saturn, Rings & Moons 13. Uranus 14. Neptune 15. Pluto, Charon & Comets

Planetary Geology for Teachers

Geol 422/522 -- Web Class

This is a web course taught in past years. It remains here for public use.

Course Description

Planetary Geology for Teachers is an upper level undergraduate or graduate level course for K-12 teachers and physical science majors who wish to continue their education in planetary science or to pursue a Master of Natural Science degree. We will use Earth analogues, remote sensing, and the latest results of human planetary exploration to better understand the origin and geology of the solar system. All planetary bodies, including planets, asteroids, moons, rings, comets and meteorites will be presented. Many topics will be covered, but the course will focus on planetary evolution and differentiation, exploration of the solar system, NASA planetary missions, volcanic activity, atmospheres, geology of our nearest neighbors (Moon, Mars and Venus), surficial processes, and plate tectonics.

The course comprises 15 modules of varying sizes and lengths which are designed to provide an internet classroom experience. Much of the course will involve readings from the text as in any typical classroom course; however, lectures will be replaced by internet tutorials and world wide web access to other geology, planetary and astronomy web sites. Map and image exercises, as well as exams, are included. A term paper or a series of lesson plans (teachers and M.N.S. students only) will be required to complete the course.


Introductory geology courses from other departments or institutions may be substituted,but students need to check with the instructor.


"The New Solar System" , fourth edition, by J. Kelly Beatty, Carolyn Collins Petersen, and Andrew Chaiken, (editors) 1999, Cambridge University Press,. (ISBN 0-521-64587-5 for soft cover, ISBN 0-521-64183-7, hard cover). 

Cambridge University Press

Sky and Telescope Magazine

The New Solar System is written by some of the best planetary scientists, and each chapter has a different author. The fourth edition of The New Solar System is illustrated by Don Davis (sample).

Here are some useful links to begin studying the solar system and planetary processes.
National Geographic's Virtual Solar System A great site with good images.
Welcome to the Planets More great pictures and a lot of facts about each planet.
Space.com This site features news on space exploration, exercises for kids, and lots of other stuff.

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