Form NC: New Course Proposal





Natural Science

Form CE/NC #:



6 Sep 02



I. Give complete UMM catalog entry (see instructions).

NSci 2051. CE: Archaeoastronomy of Native Americans. (Sci; 4 cr)

Study of the archaeoastronomical observations of several Native American groups. Includes travel to archaeoastronomical sites in Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois, New Mexico, Colorado, and Utah. Solar, lunar, planetary, and stellar astronomical backgrounds of the site architecture and alignments. Modern scientific understanding of the celestial observations, along with the cultural significance to the Native American observers.


II. Rationale (see instructions):

This course will provide students with the opportunity to visit and study the archaeoastronomical sites of various Native American groups. The scientific background of the observations will be provided along with the interpretation and importance of the observations by Native American cultures.


III. Other Course Information

First semester to be offered:

May 2003

Principal Faculty Sponsor(s):

Gordon McIntosh

Is course repeatable? (if yes, give max cr)


To what quarter course(s) does this correspond?


Should course be listed in day school catalog?


Course Type (choose one from instruction sheet):

Field Work


Course requires:(check all that apply):


Laboratory sections


Recitation/discussion sections

IV. Assessment Information

Please state clearly and briefly the GOALS of this course.


The goals of this course are to provide the students with knowledge of the motion of the sun, moon, planets, and stars through the celestial sphere. The observations and interpretations of Native Americans of these phenomena will then be studied. Various Native American archaeoastronomical sites will be visited and the techniques and architecture used to make celestial observations will be considered. The natural history of the regions visited will also be discussed.

How will you ASSESS the success of this course in achieving the GOALS described above?


The course will include astronomical observations, field work activities, a research paper, a travel journal, and tests to measure the success of the students in comprehending the material.