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University of Leeds

Atmospheric Chemistry: Planets and Life Beyond Earth

University of Leeds via FutureLearn


Discover the extraordinary world of atmospheric chemistry.

On this course you will learn about planetary atmospheres across our solar system and beyond. You will discover what an atmosphere is, how it’s formed, and how data collected from space missions is used to determine a planet’s atmosphere.

You’ll also look into the factors needed to support life, explore the possibility of life beyond Earth and start the search for habitable planets. You’ll understand how atmospheric chemistry is communicated in the media and get a flavour of one of the most fascinating subjects explored during an undergraduate degree in Chemistry.

The course is for anyone with a general interest in atmospheric chemistry but it will be particularly useful for students at schools and colleges who want to study chemistry at university. The course is part of the Going to University collection and completing it can help improve your university application by broadening your chemistry knowledge and developing your independent learning skills. The course can also be used as a teachers’ classroom enrichment resource.

Taught by

Julia Lehman

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4.7 rating, based on 46 reviews

Start your review of Atmospheric Chemistry: Planets and Life Beyond Earth

  • Anonymous
    I found this course excellent especially so for those who intend to take degrees in this or similar subjects. I was interested in the course only and found it fascinating and really stretched the mind. I have a new understanding of researching well known scientific sites and questioning everything I read, confirming with other sites.

    Thank you Future Learn - I have been doing your courses for years now and cannot wait to start the next one. Thanks to all the educators and staff. A wonderful place of teaching and learning.
  • Anonymous
    This was a well presented course, but in common with many courses, lacks live input from an academic team. This is not a criticism, but a statement of fact; FL is constrained by responses to the effects of restrictions due to the COVID19 pandemic on the one hand, and increased interest from Learners on the other. I think it meets its targets on all fronts - interesting to the curious mind, and a good preparation for those about to start out on their academic adventure.
  • Profile image for Robbie
    A clear, informative and well-structured course which makes chemistry and space exploration accessible even to people who have no prior knowledge at all - just like me. Thank you so much for developing this course and giving everyone access to it.

    It is one of the most inspiring and insightful courses I've ever taken on Future Learn, so much I created a CC profile just to give it 5 stars.

    Keep it up (please)!
  • Anonymous
    I absolutely loved this course.

    I feel like it has given me a much better basic understanding about the search for life on other planets and moons, and it has sparked my interest to know even more.

    Really taking time to do the tasks and sharing feedback in the Comments section helped me immensely in working things out.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Although I have taken courses with future lear in the past, I have recently retired and will be looking to take more courses in the future. I found this course really interesting and engaging throughout.
    One area of the course that could be improved is feedback from the course tutors.
    Having submitted my comment, it would be advantages to have feedback to help and support our development.
  • Anonymous
    I'm sorry. I learned very little in this course. Maybe we just don't know any more yet. There were a lot of adverts for Leeds. I was bored.
  • Anonymous
    Excellent course with well presented atmospheric and astronomic information, supported by the scientific research and observations.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I very much enjoyed this class, it introduced to me a field of study and concepts not part of my college degree courses. It was fascinating in that I could grasp the concepts and very much enjoyed the graphics and visuals. I especially enjoyed the interactive map of the observatories, and the opportunity to do research projects and share them with other participants and learn from the posted projects of others. I understand from viewing other student reviews and comments this class was enjoyed by students of many levels of expertise. Thank you for this opportunity to learn.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    The course was so helpful and informative- there were so many activities to do over a whole range of things- from researching the science behind atmospheres to finding out how we observe them using space probes and telescopes.
    Challenging but definitely worth it, thank you so much!
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    The course introduces and uses vocabulary that one needs to explore the chemistry of space. It share beautiful photos and lists many websites for further study. The exercises give a glimpse of the kind that might be expected at university.
  • Marian De Keijzer completed this course, spending 3 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.

    very interesting course. Helps to understand the atmospheric chemistry and the conditions for life as we know it. The explanation is clear and helped me a lot to understand how life started on our own planet.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I enjoyed the course and learnt a lot from it . It is taken in a manner that at no point we loose our interest . Our regular participation is also encouraged and constant support is also provided.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Un curso muy interesante e importante en el aspecto de la química atmosférica de diversos planetas. Aprendí varios temas nuevos del curso.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Excellent, complete course, very detailed and easy to read. I am very curious, because the scientific subject is similar to my work.
  • Anonymous
    Excellent information and nice didactic!! Where one can learn with the quizes and the excercises. I am learning objective and clear information in the past when I saw news about a

    Astronomy, got very general information now I can understand since the scientific point of view!! Thank you very much for provide the information to all the public!!
    This is a amazing course, I would like to recomend for everybody that's enjoy chemestry, astronomy and others. If you can do it, do it now. You won't be regret. And I want to thank you all again for the things that I have learned in here. It's very exciting to be part of this group, at list for one time in our lives, thak you all!
  • Anonymous
    So far it is extremely interesting so I am looking forward to the rest of the course. It took me to a level of thinking that I usually am not in so it presents me with a healthy challenge.

    Thumbs up to the facilitators on a job well done !
  • Anonymous
    I learned alot. My favorite lessons were the learning planets and telescopes and satellites and spectrometer and finding where to look up science news. Other students helped in learning too. I want to learn more!
  • Mashreafa Meahrun Mishu

    Mashreafa Meahrun Mishu completed this course.

    This course was amazing. It's helped me to knew many things of our atmosphere, our planet's, and our galaxy.
    So, you can take this course to know about that. Thanks.
  • Anonymous
    The course provided a concise and easy to understand overview of extraterrestrial chemistry. I am looking forward to courses that elaborate on this subject.

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