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A Googol of Atoms?

What is a googol?  Invented by Edward Kasner, an American mathematician who popularized the number in his 1940 book, Mathematics and the I ...


A Rose By Any Other Name

This dilemma case, developed for a general astronomy course, provides an introduction to our solar system by highlighting the peculiarities of Plut ...


Farming in Space

If you were limited to choosing only three crops to sustainably farm in an arid, inhospitable environment, what would they be and how would you dec ...


Is a Mars Sample Return Mission Too Risky?

Following a public hearing format, this case study allows students to explore the scientific and public policy issues surrounding the advisability ...


Mask of the Black God

One Navajo legend attributes the creation of the primary stars and constellations to "Black God." Today, a famous star cluster, the Pleiades, often ...


The Moon

The overall goal of this interrupted case study is for students to practice confirmation/disconfirmation reasoning while learning the basics of sol ...


The Moon Landings

This discussion-based, modular case study provides students an opportunity to examine historical, political, and social issues that impact scientis ...


The Spark of Life

In biology classes, students are typically taught that spontaneous generation does not take place. And yet, at the origin of life, life had to aris ...


The Zarkah Stone

On the night of March 26, 2003, a brilliant fireball exploded and fragmented over south suburban Chicago, hammering houses and sidewalks with meteo ...


Vikings on Mars

Three experiments carried out by the Mars Viking landers in 1976 remain, to this day, our only attempt to detect life on another planet. All other ...