First cycle
degree courses
Second cycle
degree courses
Single cycle
degree courses
School of Human and Social Sciences and Cultural Heritage
Course unit
LE01100546, A.A. 2019/20

Information concerning the students who enrolled in A.Y. 2017/18

Information on the course unit
Degree course First cycle degree in
LE0599, Degree course structure A.Y. 2008/09, A.Y. 2019/20
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Number of ECTS credits allocated 6.0
Type of assessment Mark
Course unit English denomination HISTORY OF ASTRONOMY
Department of reference Department of Philosophy, Sociology, Education and Applied Psychology
Mandatory attendance No
Language of instruction Italian
Single Course unit The Course unit can be attended under the option Single Course unit attendance
Optional Course unit The Course unit can be chosen as Optional Course unit

Teacher in charge GIULIO PERUZZI FIS/08

Course unit code Course unit name Teacher in charge Degree course code

ECTS: details
Type Scientific-Disciplinary Sector Credits allocated
Educational activities in elective or integrative disciplines FIS/05 Astronomy and Astrophysics 6.0

Course unit organization
Period First semester
Year 3rd Year
Teaching method frontal

Type of hours Credits Teaching
Hours of
Individual study
Lecture 6.0 42 108.0 No turn

Start of activities 30/09/2019
End of activities 18/01/2020
Show course schedule 2019/20 Reg.2008 course timetable

Examination board
Board From To Members of the board
6 Commissione Storia dell'Astronomia 2018-2019 01/10/2018 30/11/2019 PERUZZI GIULIO (Presidente)
ZANINI VALERIA (Membro Effettivo)

Prerequisites: The course is devoted to students of the Bachelor Degree in Astronomy and Master Degree in Philosophy. Basic knowledge of mathematics, physics, and astronomy are required.
Target skills and knowledge: The course aims at introducing the students to the main topics of the history of astronomy, focusing on the period from the 16th to the 20th century.
Examination methods: Written paper on one of the main topics discussed in the course. A list of possible topics will be made available to the students.
Assessment criteria: The main evaluation criteria are the attendance at the lectures, participation to the discussions, and bibliographic search ability.
Course unit contents: The course is divided into two modules:

A – Topics on the history of physics and astronomy from the Scientific Revolution to the 20th century. The main topics are: hints on the pre copernican astronomy; the works of Copernicus, Kepler, Tycho and Galileo; the Newtonian theory of gravitation; theories on the origin of the solar system from the 18th to the 20th century; the birth of astrophysics; Einstein general relativity and the Standard Model of the Universe.

B – Topics on the evolution of astronomy, focusing on the history of astronomical instruments and on the history of astronomical observatories. The main topics are: astronomical instruments before telescopes; the invention of the telescope and first discoveries; telescopes and observations in the 17th century; institutional astronomical observatories; developments of astronomical instruments from the 18th to the 19th century; astrophysics and astronomical photography; astronomers in Padua; astronomers measure of time.
Planned learning activities and teaching methods: Lectures and seminars, and in the second part of the course visits to the Museum “La Specola” of the Padua Astronomical Observatory. Lectures are given in Italian.
Additional notes about suggested reading: Slides of the lectures and bibliographic materials will be made available through the website of the course on the e-learning platform of the Department of Physics and Astronomy "G. Galilei" ( Suggested textbooks for selected topics.
Textbooks (and optional supplementary readings)
  • Longair, Malcolm S., The Cosmic Century. A History of Astrophysics and Cosmology. Cambridge UK: Cambridge University Press, 2006. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Tullio Regge, Giulio Peruzzi, Spazio, tempo e universo. Passato, presente e futuro della teoria della relatività. Torino: Bollati Boringhieri, 2005. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Kuhn, Thomas, La rivoluzione copernicana. L'astronomia planetaria nello sviluppo del pensiero occidentale. Torino: Einaudi, 2000. Cerca nel catalogo
  • Hoskin, Michael, Storia dell'Astronomia. Milano: BUR-Rizzoli, 2008. Cerca nel catalogo
  • King, Henry C., The history of the telescope. New York: Dover, 2003. Cerca nel catalogo

Innovative teaching methods: Teaching and learning strategies
  • Lecturing
  • Loading of files and pages (web pages, Moodle, ...)

Innovative teaching methods: Software or applications used
  • Moodle (files, quizzes, workshops, ...)