History Of Astronomy

20 Questions | Total Attempts: 495

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History Of Astronomy

This is an open materials online quiz but keep in mind you will have 45 minutes to take the test. You will be allowed to take the test twice if you are dissatisfied with your first score. The higher of the two scores will be recorded. Good luck!


Questions and Answers
  • 1. 
    Examine the diagram of the solar system below. Which of the following astronomers held and promoted this view of the solar system? Check all that apply.
    • A. 

      Aristarchus

    • B. 

      Ptolemy

    • C. 

      Copernicus

    • D. 

      Tycho Brahe

    • E. 

      Johannes Kepler

  • 2. 
    What approach did early astronomers like Eratosthenes take to discover the size and shape of the earth? (Choose all that apply)
    • A. 

      The logic that the shape of the earth's shadow on the moon during eclipses provided clues to earth's shape

    • B. 

      Observations that certain stars could only be visible from certain locations

    • C. 

      Using geometry and distances between two locations where sun beams were relatively parallel allowed astronomers to calculate roughly the circumference of the earth

    • D. 

      Early astronomers relied only upon observations with the naked eye

    • E. 

      Early astronomers relied on observations and geometry only to explain relative shapes and sizes of the earth

  • 3. 
    What is the following diagram developed by Ptolemy attempting to explain?
    • A. 

      Geocentric model with stellar parallax

    • B. 

      Heliocentric model

    • C. 

      Geocentric model with the retrograde motion of Mars

    • D. 

      How the relative distance of the earth can be determined

  • 4. 
    Examine the picture of stellar parallax. How was this concept used to reject Aristarchus' early notion that the Sun was the center of the solar system?
    • A. 

      There was too little distance between Earth and the stars to make any conclusions

    • B. 

      The stars' movement compared to the more distant stars was not observable. Therefore, stellar parallax must not exist.

    • C. 

      Stellar parallax does not exist because early astronomers could observe the movement of the more near star and it would not move.

    • D. 

      The distance between the Sun and earth was too large to make any observations of stars' movements

  • 5. 
    What problems did early astronomers face when trying to justify a geocentric model?
    • A. 

      Bodies in the night sky moved from horizon to horizon making people think the Sun was the center

    • B. 

      No observations of bodies in the night sky were observable to make any logical conclusions about celestial orbits

    • C. 

      Retrograde motion of planets farther out than the Earth

    • D. 

      The lack of evidence for stellar parallax

  • 6. 
    The observation that everything moved across the night sky from east to west caused early astronomers to believe... ( choose one )
    • A. 

      The earth was the center of the solar system

    • B. 

      The sun was the center of the solar system

    • C. 

      Stellar parallax did not exist

    • D. 

      Retrograde motion did not exist

  • 7. 
    The early astronomer __________________________ attempted to show that Mars moved in circles as it orbited the Earth.
  • 8. 
    What evidence would support that the Sun was the center of the solar system? ( check all that apply)
    • A. 

      The moon and sun both move across the night sky from east to west

    • B. 

      Stellar parallax

    • C. 

      Retrograde motion

    • D. 

      Spherical shadows on the moon's surface

  • 9. 
    Read the following excerpt taken from the Explorations book, "Tycho designed and had built instruments of far greater accuracy than any yet devised in Europe. Tycho then used these devices to make precise measurements of planetary positions. His meticulous observations turned out to be crucial not only for distinguishing the superiority of the heliocentric over the geocentric system but also for revealing the true shape of planetary orbits." What conclusion(s) can you make about the nature of scientific endeavor? (choose all that apply)
    • A. 

      Scientists rely on observations and measurements to support their claims

    • B. 

      Scientists' observations and measurements could lead to future, new discoveries

    • C. 

      Scientific knowledge changes with the development of new technology

    • D. 

      Scientists use others' work to help their own investigations

    • E. 

      Scientists do not rely on logically explaining patterns found in their measurements

  • 10. 
    Kepler was the first astronomer to fit planetary orbits to? ( choose one)
    • A. 

      Circles

    • B. 

      Epicycles

    • C. 

      Heliocentric models

    • D. 

      Ellipses

    • E. 

      Rotations

  • 11. 
    Using the diagram below, Kepler helped explain...
    • A. 

      Why planets travel faster when farther away from the sun during its orbit

    • B. 

      Why retrograde motion occurs

    • C. 

      Why planets travel faster closer to the sun during its orbit

    • D. 

      Why the sun is the center of planets' circular orbits

  • 12. 
    What important discovery did Galileo make that clearly disproved the geocentric model?
    • A. 

      The interior planet of Venus also had phases when observed from the earth.

    • B. 

      The moon has phases showing not all celestial bodies orbit the sun

    • C. 

      Saturn had rings

    • D. 

      Retrograde motion

  • 13. 
    Which of the following choices accurately compares the discovery of the phases of the planet Venus and the retrograde motion of Mars? ( choose one )
    • A. 

      Venus and Mars are both interior planets relative to the Earth

    • B. 

      Both support that Venus, Earth and Mars are all orbiting the Sun

    • C. 

      Both support the geocentric model of the solar system

    • D. 

      Both created difficulty to support the heliocentric model

  • 14. 
    Examine the diagram of retrograde motion. What is the relationship between Earth and Mars?
    • A. 

      Earth and Mars travel at the same speeds around the Sun

    • B. 

      Earth and Mars have the same orbit

    • C. 

      Retrograde motion supports the geocentric model

    • D. 

      Earth has a faster orbit than Mars

  • 15. 
    Which of the following words shows the similarity between Aristarchus and Copernicus?
    • A. 

      Geocentric

    • B. 

      Heliocentric

    • C. 

      Retrograde

    • D. 

      Epicycle

    • E. 

      Ellipses

  • 16. 
    Choose which word best completes the analogy: Ptolemy is to epicycles as Kepler is to _________________________
    • A. 

      Ellipses

    • B. 

      Parallax

    • C. 

      Circles

    • D. 

      Phases

  • 17. 
    Read the following excerpt from Explorations to answer the following question, "Galileo looked at Jupiter and saw four smaller objects orbiting it, which he concluded were moons of the planet." Which of the following conclusions can you make from this statement?"
    • A. 

      At least some of the bodies in heaven did not orbit the Earth.

    • B. 

      The geocentric model CANNOT work at all as a result of this discovery.

    • C. 

      All bodies in the heaven orbit the Earth

    • D. 

      Not enough information to make any accurate conclusions

  • 18. 
    Which of the following accurately summarizes the changes in scientific thought concerning the motion of planetary bodies in our solar system? 
    • A. 

      The development of the heliocentric model including elliptical orbits was developed through primarily naked eye observations.

    • B. 

      The role of technology such as Galileo's telescope was crucial in providing convincing evidence to support one view over another.

    • C. 

      Scientists work alone and do not use or build off each other's work, observations or measurements.

    • D. 

      Mathematical logic plays a small role in calculating planetary motion

  • 19. 
    If you were an early astronomer, how could you prove if our planet orbited the Sun rather than the Sun orbit us? ( Check all that apply )
    • A. 

      Show how interior planets (between the Sun and the Earth) show phases when observed from the Earth.

    • B. 

      Explain how exterior planets "appear" to move backwards in the night sky because the Earth "catches and passes" these exterior planets due to our interior, shorter orbit.

    • C. 

      Show how the east to west movement of everything in the night sky supports heliocentrism.

    • D. 

      Show how the discovery of Jupiter's moons prove that not everything orbits the Earth.

  • 20. 
    If we were on the former planet Pluto, which would you use to show there was another planet orbiting the Sun farther away from Pluto?
    • A. 

      The movement of this planet from east to west across the night sky of Pluto

    • B. 

      The "apparent" backwards motion of this planet in Pluto's night sky

    • C. 

      The observation that this new planet had a faster orbit than Pluto

    • D. 

      This planet possibly has orbiting moons

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