I’m sure there’s at least a decent percentage of us who once dreamed of being an astronaut as a child. Maybe you still have those dreams? If that’s the case, this is the ideal MasterClass for you. If not, but you have a healthy interest in space, this is also the MasterClass for you.
As for me? I was more the type of child to have nightmares about being launched into space. But as someone who likes to write sci-fi, getting factual knowledge about space exploration can help season my stories with factual descriptions.
This is what I thought of the Chris Hadfield MasterClass on space exploration.
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Who Is Chris Hadfield
Chris Hadfield is a retired Canadian astronaut and is considered “the most famous astronaut since Neil Armstrong”. He has built a successful career that opens up the accessibility and wonder of space to the average person. He is an incredibly interesting and successful person with a personality that makes him very likable and intriguing to learn from.
He is the author of four books: The Apollo Murders, The Darkest Dark, An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth, and You Are Here.
What Chris Hadfield’s MasterClass Covers
Chris Hadfield’s MasterClass covers everything from the future of space exploration to the specifics of spacecraft design. He even explains a few of the formulas used during a launch.
Chris Hadfield’s MasterClass is 29 lessons long making it a hefty course from this company. It is a 7-hour and 48-minute investment and on the other side, you’ll come out knowing more about spaceships than you knew going in. You’ll want to spread this out over a few days as it is a rather long course and it’s unlikely you’ll be able to truly focus on the complex information covered for that long all at once.
The course is split up into a few major chunks including rockets, spacewalking, mars, and more. The lessons in this class include:
- Astronaut Training
- Rockets: How Rockets Work
- Rockets: What It Feels Like to Launch
- Rockets: Atmospheric Drag
- Rockets: Orbital Mechanics
- Rockets: Fuels and Propulsion
- Rockets: The Price of Exploration
- Spaceships: Capsule Design
- Spaceships: Shuttles and Beyond
- Spaceships: Navigation Systems and Human Variables
- Spaceships: Navigating to the International Space Station
- The ISS: Conception, Design, and Construction
- The ISS: Life Support Systems
- The ISS: Experiments
- Leadership: Commanding the ISS
- Training and Learning: One-Pagers
- Comms: Mission Control Evolution and Operations
- Spacewalking: Spacesuits
- Spacewalking: Spacewalks
- Spacewalking: Training
- Spacewalking: Space and Perspective
- Training and Learning: Simulations
- Mars: How to Get to Mars
- Mars: Living on Another Planet
- Mars: In-Situ Resource Utilization
- Mars: Exploring Mars, Geology, and Astrobiology
- Conclusion: The Future of Exploration
- Bonus Chapter: Chris’s Journey
You can’t buy Chris Hadfield’s MasterClass alone. However, the cost per class breakdown puts each course under $1. If you plan to do many courses, the deal isn’t bad at all.
The prices for memberships are currently as follows:
- Individual – $15/mo or $180
- Duo – $20/mo or $240
- Family – $23/mo or $276
This class comes with a 97-page guidebook. This is a very generous guide and to be frank, I’m not surprised. This course is in-depth, something I’ve noticed while going through MasterClass’s first handful of courses. If you are interested in this area professionally, I recommend reading the guidebook as it will go into more detail. If you just want to listen to Hadfield share his experiences, stick to the video and you’ll find yourself happier with the course overall.
What We Liked
There’s a lot to like about Chris Hadfield’s MasterClass on space exploration for space enthusiasts and casual watchers alike. Here are the things we most enjoyed about this class.
Descriptive & In-Depth
This MasterClass is long, emphasis on long. You get to learn about numerous areas of space exploration. Unlike other MasterClass, nothing is clumped together for brevity. This MasterClass dedicates entire lessons to atmospheric drag, orbital mechanics, capsule design, and more.
Hadfield’s Personality and Storytelling Abilities
Hadfield loves space exploration, that much is clear from the first lesson. I loved listening to him speak about his experiences. He’s a talker for sure and he gives so many details that other speakers may have left out. It makes what could be a dry MasterClass very engaging.
The resource guidebook that came alongside this video course was a whole whopping 97-pages. (That’s darn near a whole book. A small one, but still.) The resource was also not an exact replica of the course in text form which I appreciated.
What We Didn’t Like
It’s hard to narrow down a single thing I didn’t particularly like about this MasterClass. I enjoyed the course as a whole. I think the one problem I did notice is with the topic selection itself. It isn’t likely many of us will be astronauts and therefore it isn’t applicable to many lives. However, I don’t believe we need to pursue the topics of these MasterClasses as careers in order to get useful and entertaining information out of them.
How to Get the Most Out of This Class
You really should watch the entire video portion of the course and read to the guidebook to get the most out of it. However, I’ve highlighted the best and worst lessons below to guide those with less time to commit.
Best Lesson: Rockets: What It Feels Like to Launch
Hadfield is an engaging storyteller who walks you through the entire process of launch in great detail from first-hand experience. I also enjoyed ‘Spaceships: Capsule Design’ which detailed all the factors that go into designing a capsule that will keep astronauts alive.
Others liked the lessons on spacesuits, the future of exploration, orbital mechanics, and Chris’s journey the best.
Worst Lesson: None
I found all the lessons to be equally interesting and didn’t see a single sore point in particular.
Best for Everyone: Bonus Chapter: Chris’s Journey
If you watch nothing else from this MasterClass, watch the final lesson in the MasterClass. The Bonus Chapter: Chris’s Journey is such an inspiring look at Hadfield’s journey and he provides such a positive and healthy outlook on life and pursuing your dreams. Loved, loved, loved this class and specifically this lesson.
Who Is This MasterClass Best For?
Space-enthusiasts, documentary lovers, and astronaut-wannabes—this is the MasterClass for you.
I’d also like to recommend this MasterClass for writers. As writers, especially in the sci-fi genre, there are some things we will never experience. The likelihood of us launching ourselves into space for research is incredibly thin to probably none. However, the next best thing to first-hand experience is learning from somebody who has first-hand knowledge. That’s where this MasterClass will help you.
Who Is This MasterClass Not For?
If you’re not interested in space exploration or astronauts, it goes without saying that you won’t get much from this MasterClass. If you’re looking for MasterClasses where you can learn skills that you can then use in your life, this also isn’t the course for you. (Unless you happen to be an astronaut-in-training.)
Similar MasterClasses You Might Like
If you like Chris Hadfield’s MasterClass, you’ll likely enjoy the following:
- Bill Nye – Science and Problem-Solving
- Matthew Walker – The Science of Better Sleep
- Neil deGrasse Tyson – Scientific Thinking and Communication
- Terence Tao – Mathematical Thinking
- Dr. Jane Goodall – Conservation
Final Takeaway – 10/10
I thought this MasterClass was incredible. It was in-depth, Hadfield is an interesting and knowledgeable teacher, and the course structure was thoughtful. I highly recommend this MassterClass to all who have even a slight interest in space.