Life in the Universe

Series
Pearson
Author
Jeffrey O. Bennett / Seth Shostak  
Publisher
Pearson
Cover
Softcover
Edition
4
Language
English
Total pages
560
Pub.-date
January 2016
ISBN13
9780134089089
ISBN
0134089081
Related Titles



Description

For intro-level, one-semester multidisciplinary science and astronomy courses.

 

Encourage students to explore answers to questions about life beyond Earth and our solar system.

 

Life in the Universe provides an ideal starting point for non-science majors intrigued by the latest discoveries about life in the solar system and beyond. Rigorously researched and accessible to students of all backgrounds, the text introduces concepts drawn from astronomy, biology, and geology to explain natural phenomena and to explore profound scientific questions about astrobiology. The Fourth Edition has been thoroughly revised and updated to include the latest scientific discoveries and advancements, including new information regarding extrasolar planets, artificial life, and early life on Earth.

 

Designed for courses in astrobiology, Life in the Universe arouses students’ natural curiosity by exploring fundamental questions such as: How did life begin on Earth? What are the most extreme forms of life currently known? What do we know about the possibility of life beyond Earth?

 

The text encourages non-science majors to develop an understanding of the process of science through its inherently compelling subject matter as well as its wealth of engaging features, including Learning Goals, Special Topics, and connections to popular culture. Sidebars provide optional mathematical material for courses that fulfill quantitative requirements.

 

Also available with MasteringAstronomy™

Available for the first time with Life in the Universe, MasteringAstronomy from Pearson is the leading online homework, tutorial, and assessment system, designed to improve results by engaging students before and after class with powerful content. Instructors ensure students arrive ready to learn by assigning educationally effective content before class. Students can further master concepts after class through traditional homework assignments that provide hints and answer-specific feedback. The Mastering gradebook records scores for all automatically graded assignments in one place, while diagnostic tools give instructors access to rich data to assess student understanding and misconceptions.

 

Mastering brings learning full circle by continuously adapting to each student and making learning more personal than ever—before and after class.

 

Students, if interested in purchasing this title with MasteringAstronomy, ask your instructor for the correct package ISBN and Course ID. Instructors, contact your Pearson representative for more information.

 

Features

About the Book   

  • NEW! New and updated content includes:
    • Heavily revised coverage of the dynamic, rapidly advancing science of extrasolar planets covered in a completely rewritten chapter.
    • The latest results from the Mars Curiosity rover and the expected results from MAVEN, the most recent Mars mission, are now included.
    • Significantly expanded coverage regarding new discoveries that shed light on the early evolution of Earth’s environment.
    • Substantial revisions of sections concerning evidence for early life on Earth that reflect major new discoveries.
    • A completely rewritten chapter regarding artificial life that takes into account the latest scientific advancements.
  • UPDATED! Movie Madness boxes have been updated for the latest examples of correct and incorrect science as portrayed in popular movies.
  • UPDATED! Special Topics boxes touch on the latest discoveries and include new relevant examples that help explain basic concepts.
  • NEW! Process of Science and Group Work Exercise questions in the end of chapter material.   
  • Cosmic Context two-page spreads explain key big picture ideas by combining brief explanations with annotated graphics.     
  • Balanced, interdisciplinary coverage engages and motivates non-science students to explore the nature of science itself.
  • Learning Goals are presented as key questions at the start of each chapter to help students focus on the most important concepts, including material that highlights the process of science. The Learning Goals are also featured as subheads throughout the text and are returned to again in the Summary of Key Concepts at the end of each chapter, providing a clear learning path for students to follow.  
  • The Process of Science in Action is a special section appearing at the end of each chapter that examine topics in greater depth as examples of how the process of science works, enabling students to get a deeper understanding of the differences between science and pseudoscience.  
  • Visual chapter summaries, called Summary of Key Concepts, include answers to the Learning Goal questions as well as illustrations and figures from the text that summarize and unify the most important topics.  
  • Think About It questions, strategically placed throughout the text, encourage students to stop and digest what they have just read and provide relevant topics for class debate.   
  • The Big Picture box closes each chapter with a list of ideas to contemplate, helping students to see how all the pieces fit together and setting the context for the next chapter.   
  • Cosmic Calculations are optional math boxes that present students with simple equations and teach basic quantitative analysis. Simple equations have also been selectively added to the text narrative in places where their presence aids student comprehension.   
  • Special Topics boxes provide more in-depth material that can be assigned according to the emphasis of your course.
  • Key Definition boxes provide a glossary of terms as they are introduced.

The text and the technology assets of MasteringAstronomy are designed to work in tandem, to create a seamless learning suite to support student learning before, during, and after class.

 

Also available with MasteringAstronomy

Available for the first time with Life in the Universe, MasteringAstronomy from Pearson is the leading online homework, tutorial, and assessment system, designed to improve results by engaging students before, during, and after class with powerful content. Instructors ensure students arrive ready to learn by assigning educationally effective content before class, and encourage critical thinking and retention with in-class resources. Students can further master concepts after class through homework assignments that provide hints and answer-specific feedback. The Mastering gradebook records scores for all automatically graded assignments in one place, while diagnostic tools give instructors access to rich data to assess student understanding and misconceptions.

 

Mastering brings learning full circle by continuously adapting to each student and making learning more personal than ever—before, and after class.

  • Before Class
    • NEW! eText 2.0
      • Now available on smartphones and tablets.
      • Seamlessly integrated videos and other rich media.
      • Accessible (screen-reader ready).
      • Configurable reading settings, including resizable type and night reading mode.
      • Instructor and student note-taking, highlighting, bookmarking, and search.
    • Pre-lecture Reading questions check students’ familiarity with key concepts, prompting them to do their assigned reading prior to coming to class. These quizzes keep students on track, keep them more engaged in lecture, and help you spot the concepts with which they are having the most difficulty. Open-ended essay questions help students to identify what they find most difficult about a concept, helping to better inform you and assisting with “Just-in-time” teaching.
  • After Class
    • NEW! Interactive figures available for mobile use.
    • Tutorials, featuring specific wrong-answer feedback, hints, and a wide variety of educationally effective content, guide your students through the toughest topics in astronomy. The hallmark Hints and Feedback offer instruction similar to what students would experience in an office hour, allowing them to learn from their mistakes without being given the answer.

 

New to this Edition

About the Book   

  • New and updated content includes:
    • Heavily revised coverage of the dynamic, rapidly advancing science of extrasolar planets covered in a completely rewritten chapter.
    • The latest results from the Mars Curiosity rover and the expected results from MAVEN, the most recent Mars mission, are now included.
    • Significantly expanded coverage regarding new discoveries that shed light on the early evolution of Earth’s environment.
    • Substantial revisions of sections concerning evidence for early life on Earth that reflect major new discoveries.
    • A completely rewritten chapter regarding artificial life that takes into account the latest scientific advancements.
  • UPDATED! Movie Madness boxes have been updated for the latest examples of correct and incorrect science as portrayed in popular movies.
  • UPDATED! Special Topics boxes touch on the latest discoveries and include new relevant examples that help explain basic concepts.
  • Process of Science and Group Work Exercise questions in the end of chapter material.   

Also available with MasteringAstronomy

Available for the first time with Life in the Universe, MasteringAstronomy from Pearson is the leading online homework, tutorial, and assessment system, designed to improve results by engaging students before, during, and after class with powerful content. Instructors ensure students arrive ready to learn by assigning educationally effective content before class, and encourage critical thinking and retention with in-class resources. Students can further master concepts after class through homework assignments that provide hints and answer-specific feedback. The Mastering gradebook records scores for all automatically graded assignments in one place, while diagnostic tools give instructors access to rich data to assess student understanding and misconceptions.

 

Mastering brings learning full circle by continuously adapting to each student and making learning more personal than ever–before, and after class.

 

    • MasteringAstronomy homework system available for the first time.

 

Before Class

  • eText 2.0
  • Now available on smartphones and tablets.
  • Seamlessly integrated videos and other rich media.
  • Accessible (screen-reader ready).
  • Configurable reading settings, including resizable type and night reading mode.
  • Instructor and student note-taking, highlighting, bookmarking, and search.

 

After Class

  • Interactive figures available for mobile use.

Table of Contents

1 A Universe of Life?

2 The Science of Life in the Universe

3 The Universal Context of Life

4 The Habitability of Earth

5 The Nature of Life on Earth

6 The Origin and Evolution of Life on Earth

7 Searching for Life in Our Solar System

8 Mars

9 Life on Jovian Moons

10 The Nature and Evolution of Habitability

11 Extrasolar Planets: Their Nature and Potential Habitability

12 The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence

13 Interstellar Travel and the Fermi Paradox

Epilogue: Contact – Implications for the Search and Discovery

 

Author

Jeffrey Bennett

Jeffrey Bennett, a recipient of the American Institute of Physics Science Communication Award, holds a B.A. in biophysics (UC San Diego), and an M.S. and Ph.D. in astrophysics (University of Colorado). He specializes in science and math education and has taught at every level from preschool through graduate school. Career highlights including serving 2 years as a visiting senior scientist at NASA headquarters, where he developed programs to build stronger links between research and education, and proposing and helping to develop the Voyage scale model solar system on the National Mall (Washington, DC). He is the lead author of textbooks in astronomy, astrobiology, mathematics, and statistics, and of critically acclaimed books for the public including Beyond UFOs (Princeton University Press, 2008/2011), Math for Life (Bid Kid Science, 2014), What Is Relativity? (Columbia University Press, 2014), and On Teaching Science (Big Kid Science, 2014). He is also the author of six science picture books for children, including Max Goes to the Moon, The Wizard Who Saved the World, and I, Humanity; all six have been launched to the International Space Station and read aloud by astronauts for NASA’s Story Time From Space program. Dr. Bennett lives in Boulder, CO with his wife, children, and dog. His personal website is www.jeffreybennett.com.

 

Seth Shostak

Seth Shostak earned his B.A. in physics from Princeton University (1965) and a Ph.D. in astronomy from the California Institute of Technology (1972). He is currently a senior astronomer and Director of the Center for SETI Research at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California, where he helps press the search for intelligent cosmic company. For much of his career, Seth conducted radio astronomy research on galaxies and investigated the fact that these massive objects contain large amounts of unseen mass. He has worked at the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Charlottesville, Virginia, as well as at the Kapteyn Astronomical Institute in Groningen, the Netherlands (where he learned to speak bad Dutch). Seth also founded and ran a company that produced computer animation for television. He has written more than four hundred popular articles on various topics in astronomy, technology, film, and television. A frequent fixture on the lecture circuit, Seth gives approximately 70 talks annually at both educational and corporate institutions, and he is also a frequent commentator on astronomical matters for radio and television. His book Confessions of an Alien Hunter: A Scientist’s Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (National Geographic, 2009) details the latest ideas, as well as the personal experience of his day job. When he’s not trying to track down aliens, Seth can often be found behind the microphone, as host of the SETI Institute’s weekly one-hour radio show about science, Big Picture Science.