My Classes at UCLA


Ge 70: Evolution of the Cosmos and Life

This is a three-term "cluster" class that allows mostly non-science students to satisfy numerous UCLA science and other requirements. The first term is about astrophysics related topics, the second more biological and the third self-directed into a sub-area. The class is co-taught.

Class size: 2020=230, 2021=233, 2022=236, 2023F=250

Sample Syllabus |  2020F Evaluations  |  2020W Evaluations  |  2021F Evaluations  |  2022F Evaluations  |  2023W Evaluations  |  2024F Evaluations  |  2024F Survey  |  2024W Evaluations  | 


EPSS 9: Solar System

This is an undergraduate class covering the science of the Solar system. Avoiding the usual narrow focus on individual objects, we discuss broad classes of objects and the processes behind them. The class includes a laboratory component. Enrollment is huge!

Class size: 2010=60, 2012S=120, 2012F=140, 2013F=220, 2016W=388, 2021W=437, 2023W=432

Sample Syllabus |  2011W Evaluations  |  2012S Evaluations  |  2012F Evaluations  |  2013F Evaluations  |  2016W Evaluations  |  2021W Evaluations  |  2023W Evaluations


EPSS 15: Introduction to Oceanography

Undergraduate class on the physics, chemistry and biology of the oceans. Topics covered include the properties and distribution of the oceans, their relation to geology and geophysics of the Earth, origins, source and sinks of water, thermal and salinity-driven circulation, ocean-atmosphere, climate change, carbonate-silicate cycle, oceans of other worlds, life in the ocean, benthic & pelagic life, food systems, phytoplankton, origin of life, commercial and military uses of the oceans. The class includes a laboratory component. The aim of the class is to show the true excitement of oceanography, interpreted in its broadest sense.

Enrollment is huge!

Class size: 2013S=360, 2015S=419, 2016S=416, 2018S=443, 2020S=460, 2020W=430, 2022W=432. Mondays and Wednesdays 1:00pm - 2:15pm in Moore 100

Sample Syllabus  |  2013S Evaluations  |  2015S Evaluations  |  2016S Evaluations  |  2018S Evaluations  |  2020S Evaluations  |  Next offered ...unknown  | 


EPSS 19: Fiat Lux

Special, 10-hour class for 10 < n < 20 undergraduates, consisting of two 1 hour meetings in class and an 8 hour field trip to the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Class size: 2016S=20

>  |  2016S Evaluations  | 


EPSS 200E: Planetary Origins

Graduate class emphasizing physics of planetary science. All blackboard derivations.

Class size: 2013F=5, Next offered ... TBD

Sample Syllabus  |  2013W Evaluations  | 


EPSS 286A: Planetary Lunch

Weekly discussion of topical planetary science subjects by invited speakers. Typical attendance is 20 people.

2009 and 2010.

Next offered....?


iPLEX Lunch

Because Planetary Lunch is not enough. iPLEX lunch aims to be less formal, more interactive, and comes with pizza. Attendance is 20 to 30 people, often not the same ones as Planetary Lunch.


EPSS 264: Orders of Magnitude

Graduate, highly interactive class to encourage clear thinking about physical problems. The class is described here.

I limit the class size to about 7 to keep it interactive (except for one occasion in which I broke my own rule (to 19) and reminded myself that this was a bad idea).

"It is the nature of all greatness not to be exact." -Edmund Burke

Next offered...?

Description  |  2009A Evaluations  |  2009B Evaluations  |  2012A Evaluations  |  2012B Evaluations  |  2013W Evaluations  |  2014S Evaluations  |  2015W Evaluations  |  2017S Evaluations  |  2018W Evaluations  |  2019S Evaluations  |  2024W Evaluations  | 


EPSS 298: Hot Topics in Planetary Science

(Fall 2016): Graduate reading class covering hot topics in planetary science.

Description  |  2016W Evaluations  |  2019S Evaluations


My older class page.

David Jewitt

Comet Jewitt Kuiper