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Book Details

  • Paperback + Digital Product License Key Folder
  • Bookstore's Wholesale Price: $95.00
  • Forthcoming: November 2017
  • ISBN: 978-0-393-63171-5
  • 576 pages
  • Territory Rights: Worldwide
Please Note: Any item that is specified as being a folder is not available for immediate download. You must wait for the registration key folder to be delivered to you.

Related Books

Understanding Our Universe

Third Edition

Paperback + Digital Product License Key Folder

with Ebook and Smartwork5

See all options and formats starting at

Stacy Palen (Author, Weber State University), Laura Kay (Author, Barnard College), George Blumenthal (Author, University of California, Santa Cruz)


Students learn best by doing

Research shows that active learning supports deeper, long-term understanding. The Third Edition text and media package gives students more opportunities to interact with astronomy—both in real life and online. The new edition provides all the resources you need to make it easy to incorporate active learning into the classroom.


We’ve made it easier to facilitate active learning.

The Third Edition provides more ways than ever for students to “do” astronomy—and for you to teach a more active class. NEW Active Learning figures get students doing astronomy in the text, and they’re also incorporated into Smartwork5. For instructors, a NEW Interactive Instructor’s Guide and a teaching blog from Stacy Palen provide everything needed to bring active learning into the classroom. Plus, Smartwork5 allows you to efficiently track student progress and assess their understanding. 

Intuitive online homework supports “learning by doing” outside of class.

Smartwork5 allows you to easily assess students using interactive, visual content on both tablets and computers. Smartwork5 offers students answer-specific feedback for every problem in the course. You can easily set your course up with a range of pre-made assignments based on pedagogy from the book. Smartwork5 also integrates directly into your campus LMS for single sign-on and grades automatically transfer to the LMS gradebook. 

A first-of-its-kind video game for introductory astronomy.

Our At Play in the Cosmos video game is the ultimate learning by doing tool. It’s the product of close collaboration among experts in three fields: game-based learning, video game design, and teaching introductory astronomy. Designed to span the entire course, this educational game offers students challenging-yet-fun ways to apply their knowledge by completing missions and competing for achievements.  

Make your classroom more interactive with our workbook.

Learning Astronomy by Doing Astronomy activity workbook allows you to make your lecture more interactive. Students can work in groups on the activities, which based on astronomy education research. The workbook can be packaged for free with any Norton astronomy text, making it an excellent value for students. 

    Part I 

    Chapter 1: Our Place in the Universe 

    Chapter 2: Patterns in the Sky—Motions of Earth and the Moon

    Chapter 3: Laws of Motion 

    Chapter 4: Light and Telescopes 

    Part II 

    Chapter 5: The Formation of Stars and Planets 

    Chapter 6: Terrestrial Worlds in the Inner Solar System 

    Chapter 7: Atmospheres of Venus, Earth, and Mars 

    Chapter 8: The Giant Planets 

    Chapter 9: Small Bodies of the Solar System 

    Part III 

    Chapter 10: Measuring the Stars 

    Chapter 11: Our Star: The Sun 

    Chapter 12: Evolution of Low-Mass Stars 

    Chapter 13: Evolution of High-Mass Stars 

    Part IV 

    Chapter 14: Measuring Galaxies
    Chapter 15: The Milky Way and Dark Matter
    Chapter 16: The Evolution of the Universe
    Chapter 17: Formation of Structure
    Chapter 18: Life in the Universe