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Masters Degrees in Astronomy Theory

We have 14 Masters Degrees in Astronomy Theory

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The Masters in Astrophysics gives you an understanding of the principles and methods of modern astrophysics at a level appropriate for a professional physicist. Read more
The Masters in Astrophysics gives you an understanding of the principles and methods of modern astrophysics at a level appropriate for a professional physicist.

Why this programme

◾The School has a major role in the award winning NASA RHESSI X-ray mission studying solar flares and in several other forthcoming international space missions such as ESA’s Solar Orbiter.
◾The School plays a world-leading role in the design and operation of the worldwide network of laser interferometers leading the search for gravitational waves.
◾Physics and Astronomy at the University of Glasgow is ranked 3rd in Scotland (Complete University Guide 2017).
◾You will gain the theoretical, observational and computational skills necessary to analyse and solve advanced astrophysics problems, providing you with an excellent foundation for a career of scientific leadership in academia or industry.
◾You will develop transferable skills that will improve your career prospects, such as project management, team-working, advanced data analysis, problem-solving, critical evaluation of scientific literature, advanced laboratory and computing skills, and how to effectively communicate with different audiences.
◾You will benefit from direct contact with our group of international experts who will teach you cutting-edge physics and supervise your projects.
◾With a 93% overall student satisfaction in the National Student Survey 2016, Physics and Astronomy at Glasgow continues to meet student expectations combining both teaching excellence and a supportive learning environment.

[Modes of delivery of the MSc in Astrophysics include lectures, seminars and tutorials and allow students the opportunity to take part in lab, project and team work.

The programme draws upon a wide range of advanced Masters-level courses. You will have the flexibility to tailor your choice of optional courses and project work to a variety of specific research topics and their applications in the area of astrophysics.

Core courses include
◾Advanced data analysis
◾General relativity and gravitation (alternate years, starting 2018–19)
◾Gravitational wave detection
◾Plasma theory and diagnostics (alternate years, starting 2017–18)
◾Pulsars and supernovae (alternate years, starting 2018–19)
◾Research skills
◾Statistical astronomy (alternate years, starting 2017–18)
◾The Sun's Atmosphere
◾Extended project

Optional courses include

◾Advanced electromagnetic theory
◾Applied optics
◾Circumstellar matter (alternate years, starting 2017-18)
◾Cosmology (alternate years, starting 2018–19)
◾Dynamics, electrodynamics and relativity
◾Exploring planetary systems (alternate years, starting 2018-19)
◾Galaxies (alternate years, starting 2017-18)
◾Instruments for optical and radio astronomy (alternate years, starting 2018-19)
◾Statistical mechanics
◾Stellar astrophysics (alternate years, starting 2017–18)

For further information on the content of individual courses please see Honours and Masters level courses.

Industry links and employability

-◾The School of Physics and Astronomy is highly active in research and knowledge transfer projects with industry. Our Masters students have regular opportunities to engage with our industrial collaborators through informal visits, guest lectures and workshops.
◾You will also benefit from our membership of the Scottish Universities Physics Alliance. The alliance brings together internationally leading physics research across Scotland to form the largest physics grouping in the UK.
◾Our staff and students come from all around the world providing a truly global experience. The School of Physics and Astronomy is committed to providing an equitable environment for study and work, in line with the principles of Project Juno of the Institute of Physics. This was recognised in 2011 by the award of Juno Champion status. We also have a strong programme of talks and seminars given by experts from the UK and abroad, which will give you the chance of broadening your knowledge in many other areas of physics and astronomy.

For further information please visit:

Scottish Universities Physics Alliance
Project Juno of the Institute of Physics
The award of Juno Champion status

Career prospects

Career opportunities include academic research, based in universities, research institutes, observatories and laboratory facilities; industrial research in a wide range of fields including energy and the environmental sector, IT and semiconductors, optics and lasers, materials science, telecommunications, engineering; banking and commerce; higher education.

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Explore astronomy and astrophysics at an advanced level, with an emphasis on theoretical astronomy. This course is for you if you have graduated from an applied mathematics- or physics-based degree and wish to learn how to apply your knowledge to astronomy. Read more
Explore astronomy and astrophysics at an advanced level, with an emphasis on theoretical astronomy. This course is for you if you have graduated from an applied mathematics- or physics-based degree and wish to learn how to apply your knowledge to astronomy. It’s one of only three full-time, broad-based astronomy MSc courses in the UK.

How will I study?
Teaching is by:
-Lectures
-Exercise classes
-Seminars
-Personal supervision

You’ll contribute to our weekly informal seminars, and are encouraged to attend research seminars.

Assessment for the taught modules is by coursework and unseen examination. Assessment for the project is by oral presentation and a dissertation of up to 20,000 words. A distinction is awarded on the basis of excellence in both the lecture modules and the project.

You can choose to study this course full time or part time.

Your time is split between taught modules and a research project. The project can take the form of a placement in industry, but usually our faculty supervises them. Supervisors and topics are allocated, in consultation with you, at the start of the autumn term. You work on the project throughout the year. Often the projects form the basis of research papers that are later published in journals. Most projects are theoretical but there is an opportunity for you to become involved in the reduction and analysis of data acquired by faculty members.

In the autumn and spring terms, you take core modules and choose options. You start work on your project and give an assessed talk on this towards the end of the spring term. In the summer term, you focus on examinations and project work.

In the part-time structure, you take the core modules in the autumn and spring terms of your first year. After the examinations in the summer term, you begin work on your project. Project work continues during the second year when you also take options. Distribution of modules between the two years is relatively flexible and agreed between you, your supervisor and the module conveners. Most of your project work naturally falls into the second year.

Scholarships
Our aim is to ensure that every student who wants to study with us is able to despite financial barriers, so that we continue to attract talented and unique individuals.

Chancellor's International Scholarship (2017)
-25 scholarships of a 50% tuition fee waiver
-Application deadline: 1 May 2017

HESPAL Scholarship (Higher Education Scholarships Scheme for the Palestinian Territories) (2017)
-Two full fee waivers in conjuction with maintenance support from the British Council
-Application deadline: 1 January 2017

USA Friends Scholarships (2017)
-A scholarship of an amount equivalent to $10,000 for nationals or residents of the USA on a one year taught Masters degree course.
-Application deadline: 3 April 2017

Faculty
Our research focuses on extragalactic astrophysics and cosmology.

Careers
The course has an excellent reputation, both nationally and internationally, and graduates from this MSc work and study all over the world.

Many of our graduates go on to take a research degree and often find a permanent job in astronomy. Others have become science journalists and writers.

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The postgraduate MSc Astrophysics programme at Queen Mary, University of London, provide a unique opportunity for graduates to pursue the subject in depth, either for personal interest or as a step towards a professional career in astronomy. Read more
The postgraduate MSc Astrophysics programme at Queen Mary, University of London, provide a unique opportunity for graduates to pursue the subject in depth, either for personal interest or as a step towards a professional career in astronomy. The MSc programme has been running since 1972 and more than 300 degrees have been awarded. About 50 graduates have subsequently taken a PhD and some now hold academic posts including Professorships at UK Universities including Cambridge.

The MSc in Astrophysics at Queen Mary is unique in the UK in the scope of material covered. It gives students a detailed overview of the fundamentals of the subject as well as an up-to-date account of recent developments in research. The wide range of topics covered by the course reflects the breadth of research interests pursued by the members of staff in our large and friendly research group. Lectures cover such diverse topics as the origin of the universe, dark matter, dark energy, galaxies, radiation mechanisms in astrophysics, the life and death of stars, black holes, extrasolar planets, the solar system, space and solar plasma astrophysics, and research methods. Students also write a dissertation on a project on an astrophysical topic of an theoretical, computational, or observational nature. The dissertation is submitted by 31 August in the final year.

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Do you want to contribute to an area of cutting-edge research in an awe-inspiring subject? Do you want to delve deeper into advanced topics in physics or… Read more
Do you want to contribute to an area of cutting-edge research in an awe-inspiring subject? Do you want to delve deeper into advanced topics in physics or astronomy? Develop valuable new knowledge and skills? Prepare for a research career, or embark on a completely new path? Whatever your motivation, a postgraduate degree from the School of Physics and Astronomy can help you achieve your ambitions.

The MSc Physics is available in three different pathways: Particle Physic, Theoretical Physics and Condensed Matter Physics. The School of Physics and Astronomy also offers an MSc in Astrophysics and a PGCert in Astronomy and Astrophysics.

Programme outcomes

The aim of the programme is to deepen your understanding of contemporary theoretical physics, covering advanced concepts and techniques, leaving you well prepared for further doctoral level study and research. The programme will also enable you to develop skills transferable to a wide range of other careers.

This programme will:

Teach you the fundamental laws and physical principles, along with their applications, in your chosen area of physics.
Introduce you to research methodology, and how to manage your own research, making use of journal articles and other primary sources.
Allow you to communicate complex scientific ideas, concisely, accurately and informatively.
Instruct you how to use mathematical analysis to model physical behaviour and interpret the mathematical descriptions of physical phenomena.

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What is the Master of Astronomy and Astrophysics all about?. The Master of Science in Astronomy and Astrophysics programme offers a wide range of courses on the subfields of astronomy and on research methodology. Read more

What is the Master of Astronomy and Astrophysics all about?

The Master of Science in Astronomy and Astrophysics programme offers a wide range of courses on the subfields of astronomy and on research methodology. Special attention will be devoted to the analysis and astrophysical interpretation of data, as well as totechnological aspects of international astronomical research.

Upon successful completion of this programme, students will have acquired:

  • thorough insight into various aspects of astronomy;
  • insight into the sciences contributing to astronomy;
  • a critical research attitude developed through gradual training;
  • the ability to define and formulate strategies to study complex questions;
  • the ability to integrate technological developments in basic researcht;
  • the ability to construct simple numeric and physical-mathematical models to study data within a theoretical framework.

This is an initial Master's programme and can be followed on a full-time or part-time basis.

Structure

The Master of Science in Astronomy and Astrophysics programme consists of 120 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System - ECTS), divided over two years. In the first year, theoretical courses provide a solid foundation for further study, while students develop their research skills by undertaking a research project. The second year includes the Master’s thesis, i.e. an extensive written report of research conducted in one of the department’s astronomy research groups. 

Institute

The Institute of Astronomy conducts research on stellar astrophysics. The research performed at the institute is situated in the domain of stellar astrophysics and stellar evolution in a very broad context. Specific research themes of the institute include asteroseismology, stellar evolution and exoplanets.

A particular area of expertise is asteroseismology, the field that studies the internal structure of stars (massive stars, red giants, blue subdwarfs) through the observation and theoretical interpretation of their oscillation spectra. Early and late evolutionary phases of single and binary low-mass stars are investigated, with a particular focus on the interaction of stars with their circumstellar environments. The institute is involved in the development and exploitation of both ground-based and space-based instrumentation

Department

The mission of the Department of Physics and Astronomy is exploring, understanding and modelling physical realities using mathematical, computational, experimental and observational techniques. Fifteen teams perform research at an international level. Publication of research results in leading journals and attracting top-level scientists are priorities for the department.

New physics and innovation in the development of new techniques are important aspects of our mission. The interaction with industry (consulting, patents...) and society (science popularisation) are additional points of interest. Furthermore, the department is responsible for teaching basic physics courses in several study programmes.

Objectives

This Master's programme is strongly connected to research in astronomy and astrophysics and aims to prepare the students for research in this area.

At the end of this study the student will have acquired:

  • thorough insight into several aspects of astronomy;
  • insight into the sciences that contribute to astronomy;
  • a good research attitude through gradual training;
  • the ability to define and formulate a strategy to study a complex question;
  • the ability to integrate technological developments in fundamental research;
  • the ability to make simple numeric and physical-mathematical models to study data within a theoretical framework.

Career perspectives

A research-oriented Master's programme in astronomy and astrophysics is essential to ensuring high-quality astronomy research. Graduates will have a competitive advantage when applying for a PhD, either locally or abroad, and the skills they acquire will also prepare them for research careers in a broad range of professional environments.



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Are you interested in theoretical and/or experimental research of elementary particles, stars and the universe? Do you want to attend lectures by Nobel… Read more

Something for you?

Are you interested in theoretical and/or experimental research of elementary particles, stars and the universe? Do you want to attend lectures by Nobel Prize laureates and other internationally renowned researchers during your education? Do you want to participate actively in the latest, innovative experiments at CERN or on Antarctica? Or do you aspire to have a career in academia, industry, banking, in the medical sector or education? In that case this Master programme is what you are looking for!

About the programme

This MSc programme combines the expertise in research of both the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and Ghent University (UGent). This allows you to tailor your study programme according to your interests. The programme consists of several components: basic competences, electives, Master’s thesis and, specifically for the minor Research, mobility / internship. Mobility means taking courses at another university, usually in Belgium, while the internship can be either in Belgium or abroad.

Content

Elementary particles
The structure of this Master’s programme ensures a broad formation as a physicist and offers you the opportunity to partake in top-level research in our very own research groups. This programme focuses on the physics of elementary particles, where both experimental and theoretical research topics are discussed, as well as astro-particle physics.

Experimental physicist
As an aspiring experimental physicist you can focus on the experimental study of high-energy interactions and cosmic radiation, and you can work with the most innovative detectors in the biggest particle accelerators.

Theoretical physicist
As a future theorist you will be confronted with gauge theories, strings and branes, gravitation and cosmology. This theoretical part has links with theoretical research in astrophysics, since that discipline studies the evolution of massive double stars, the evolution of star birth galaxies and the chemical evolution of galaxies.

Astronomer
As an aspiring astronomer you can choose to do observational research on topics such as astroseismology and the development of photometric techniques.

Quantum physics
Finally, you can also decide to specialise in the most fundamental aspects of quantum physics and its recent applications in the field of quantum information.

Curriculum

The curriculum consists of four components:

1. Mandatory courses
2. Electives
3. Internship
4. Master thesis
This structure ensures that you will have a solid formation as a physicist, while offering you the possibility to participate in high-level research in our research groups.

Room for interaction and discussion

Physics students at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel attend lectures, exercises, lab sessions and excursions in small groups. There is room for interaction and discussion, and a low threshold for students to actively participate. This programme pays special attention to critical analysis.

The different research groups at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel are in close contact with leading universities and research institutes around the world, which allows you to do part of your studies and/or the research for your Master’s thesis abroad. Our research groups work for example at the particle accelerator at CERN.

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The IoA offers an exciting opportunity for suitably qualified students who have completed a Bachelors degree (or equivalent) in astronomy/physics/mathematics to study for a one year Masters level qualification in astro- physics working alongside 4th-year (Part III) students taking the final year of the integrated Masters undergraduate MSci Astrophysics Tripos. Read more
The IoA offers an exciting opportunity for suitably qualified students who have completed a Bachelors degree (or equivalent) in astronomy/physics/mathematics to study for a one year Masters level qualification in astro- physics working alongside 4th-year (Part III) students taking the final year of the integrated Masters undergraduate MSci Astrophysics Tripos.

The course consists of an extended project (either observational or theoretical, worth about a third of the total credit) and a choice of a range of high level specialist courses, most of which are examined in June. The course aims to provide an intellectually stimulating environment in which students have the opportunity to develop their skills and enthusiasms to the best of their potential. Owing to the demanding level of the course and the competition for a limited number of places, applicants should have achieved (or expect to achieve) a very good performance in their undergraduate degree. Although some bursary funding may be available, applicants should expect to arrange their own funding.

See the website http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/directory/pcasasast

Learning Outcomes

Students completing the year should have:

1. had experience of a number of areas of astrophysics from a choice of options taken to an advanced level, at which current research can be appreciated in some depth;

2. carried out a substantial research project amounting to about 1/3 of the work in the course;

3. enhanced their communications skills;

4. become well prepared for a career in academic research or one where independent research skills are required.

Format

Students experience a number of areas of astrophysics from a choice of options taken to an advanced level, at which current research can be appreciated in some depth. Two thirds of the student's assessment is via examinations and one-third is via the research project.

For the lecture courses there are large-group example classes organised by the course lecturers. The projects are specific to each student. i.e. every student is doing something different from the other students. Project supervisors meet their students individually. Supervisions for the project are one-on-one with at least 8 hours contact time.

Students can attend any of the numerous seminars given in the IoA, DAMTP and Physics. However these are not formally part of the course work.

Assessment

- Supervised research project with thesis of not more than 8000 words.

- Candidates normally offer papers for 12 units or 4 lecture courses of 24 lectures each.

- Examined oral presentation for the project.

- One journal club per week

- A literature review is a component of every project.

How to apply: http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/applying

Funding Opportunities

There are no specific funding opportunities advertised for this course. For information on more general funding opportunities, please follow the link below.

General Funding Opportunities http://www.graduate.study.cam.ac.uk/finance/funding

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The MSc in Astrophysics is a 12 month taught MSc that includes a 3 and a half month research project. Read more
The MSc in Astrophysics is a 12 month taught MSc that includes a 3 and a half month research project. Covering both theoretical and observational astrophysics, the course modules include one compulsory module, “Research skills in Astrophysics”, with a variety of different optional modules that range from “Stars and Nebula I” to “Gravitational Dynamics and Accretion Physics”.
The course is ideal for students who would like to build on their previous background in Physics or Mathematics and would like to gain a fuller understanding of astrophysics, while acquiring the skills to carry out research in astrophysics. Throughout the programme students will not only gain a full working knowledge of the fundamental aspects of Astrophysics but will also develop their transferable skills such as programming, data analysis, problem solving, scientific writing, presentation and science outreach skills, enhancing employability in and out of academia.
The course is broken down into 3 different semesters which includes 2 different research projects, a shorter introductory project as part as the compulsory module in semester 1 and a longer, full research project in semester 3. These 2 different research projects help students to acquire research skills and experience, allowing them to assess if they would like to continue to pursue a career in scientific research. The University Observatory and the 0.94 metre James Gregory Telescope, the largest working optical telescope in the UK, enable students to receive a hands on experience to develop their Observational expertise, which can then be followed into their research projects with the option to use either our local facilities or remote observing facilities around the world.
The course uses a combination of lecture-based, tutorial-based and project-based material and includes both exam and continuous assessment methods, where appropriate.

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The Department of Physics and Astronomy offers the master of science (MS) degrees in physics, with the option of specialization in astronomy. Read more
The Department of Physics and Astronomy offers the master of science (MS) degrees in physics, with the option of specialization in astronomy. Although we offer a course-only MS, our graduate program is mostly oriented toward current physics research.

RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES

Research toward a degree may be conducted in either experimental or theoretical areas. Experimental programs include magnetic materials, high-energy physics, materials science, observational extragalactic astronomy, and particle astrophysics. Theoretical programs include condensed matter, elementary particles, atomic and molecular physics, extragalactic astronomy, astrophysics and particle astrophysics.

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The master's programme Astronomy covers observations using the world’s most powerful ground- and space-based telescopes, theoretical astrophysical and astrochemical modeling, large scale simulations, and laboratory experiments that mimic conditions in space. Read more

The master's programme Astronomy covers observations using the world’s most powerful ground- and space-based telescopes, theoretical astrophysical and astrochemical modeling, large scale simulations, and laboratory experiments that mimic conditions in space.

What does this master’s programme entail?

In this two-year master’s programme in Astronomy you get access to cutting edge research in modern astronomy. Main focus areas include galaxies and the structures in which they are embedded, exoplanets, and star and planet formation. With seven challenging specialisations to choose from, you will be prepared for a wide variety of careers within academia, industry and the public sector.

Read more about the Astronomy master's programme.

Why study Astronomy at Leiden University?

  • We offer you a tailor-made master’s programme with many opportunities to match your study path with your interests and ambitions.
  • You have access to a cutting edge research infrastructure with strong international partners and top facilities.
  • Leiden University offers a welcoming environment and an open international community with highly approachable renowned staff, a buddy system and individual student support.

Find out more reasons to choose Leiden University.

Astronomy: the right master’s programme for you?

Are you are interested in astronomy research within or outside academia? Do you want to add value to society through scientific and technological progress? Are you keen on solving complex matters and are you up for a challenge? Then our Leiden University Astronomy master’s programme is designed for you.

Read more about the entry requirements for Astronomy.

Specialisations



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This MSc in Astrophysics is delivered by world-leading researchers at Liverpool John Moores University and is designed to facilitate further postgraduate and PhD study. Read more
This MSc in Astrophysics is delivered by world-leading researchers at Liverpool John Moores University and is designed to facilitate further postgraduate and PhD study.

-Access to the two metre research-class robotic Liverpool telescope - designed and built by LJMU experts
-Course available to study full time (1 year) and part time (2 years) via distance learning
-Delivered by academics who are world-leading researchers
-Opportunity to carry out original research in a wide range of areas
-High-quality, innovative teaching delivered via distance learning
-Qualification designed to facilitate continued study at PhD level

Astrophysics is enjoying an unprecedented burst of new discoveries about the Universe we live in. As a result of revolutionary techniques, new opportunities are emerging to explore planets, stars, galaxies and the entire Universe.
LJMU's Astrophysics Research Institute has played a leading role in many of these advances, including the development of the world famous robotic Liverpool Telescope. The Institute has developed a suite of taught postgraduate courses to enable students throughout the world to share in these new discoveries.

This MSc course will give you the foundations from which to carry out further research through a PhD or equivalent. It is delivered via distance learning for maximum flexibility.

A major component of the MSc programmes is the project module, which will give you the opportunity to work on a high-level original research topic, with guidance from an experienced supervisor from the research staff of the Institute.

All learning materials are delivered by Blackboard, LJMU's Virtual Learning Environment. You will have access to all the major astrophysical research journals and a carefully selected range of e-books to support your studies and extend your reading.

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.
Level 7
Astrophysical Concepts
Astrophysical Observations
Cosmology
Computational Astrophysics
Time-domain Astrophysics
Research Project

Further guidance on modules

The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

Academic Framework reviews are conducted by LJMU from time to time to ensure that academic standards continue to be maintained. A review is currently in progress and will be operational for the academic year 2016/2017. Final details of this programme’s designated core and option modules will be made available on LJMU’s website as soon as possible and prior to formal enrolment for the academic year 2016/2017.

Please email if you require further guidance or clarification.

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This innovative MSc in Observational Physics is delivered by world leading academics at Liverpool John Moores University. The Masters degree includes access to LJMU's research class robotic Liverpool Telescope and is designed as a route to PhD study. Read more
This innovative MSc in Observational Physics is delivered by world leading academics at Liverpool John Moores University. The Masters degree includes access to LJMU's research class robotic Liverpool Telescope and is designed as a route to PhD study.

-Course available to study full time (1 year) and part time (2 years) via distance learning
-High-quality, innovative teaching
-Access to the two metre research-class robotic Liverpool Telescope
-Qualification designed to facilitate continued study at PhD level

Astrophysics is enjoying an unprecedented burst of new discoveries about the universe we live in, as a result of revolutionary techniques that are opening new windows for the exploration of planets, stars, galaxies and the entire universe.
LJMU's Astrophysics Research Institute has played a leading role in many of these advances, including the development of the world famous robotic Liverpool Telescope.

Over the last decade, this has become one of the most flexible and powerful observatories for the study of rapidly varying sources such as Gamma-Ray Bursts, novae and supernovae. This Masters course has been developed to enable students, throughout the world, to share in these new discoveries and graduates to pursue further research through a PhD or equivalent.

The programme emphasises independent student learning and each module provides you with the opportunity to explore current literature, with support from experienced tutors, all of whom are engaged in cutting-edge astrophysical research.

All sessions on this Masters degree are delivered via distance learning to provide maximum flexibility.

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.
Level 7
Astrophysical Concepts
Astrophysical Observations
Time-domain Astrophysics
Cosmology
Computational Astrophysics
Observational Research Project

Further guidance on modules

The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

Academic Framework reviews are conducted by LJMU from time to time to ensure that academic standards continue to be maintained. A review is currently in progress and will be operational for the academic year 2016/2017. Final details of this programme’s designated core and option modules will be made available on LJMU’s website as soon as possible and prior to formal enrolment for the academic year 2016/2017.

Please email if you require further guidance or clarification.

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This programme will offer home astronomers, who may have graduated in subjects other than physics, the opportunity to gain a formal postgraduate qualification in Astronomy and Astrophysics, and is designed to give students a robust and up-to-date background in these areas. Read more
This programme will offer home astronomers, who may have graduated in subjects other than physics, the opportunity to gain a formal postgraduate qualification in Astronomy and Astrophysics, and is designed to give students a robust and up-to-date background in these areas. Over the course of two years, we will explore the solar system, stellar physics, infra-red, radio and high energy astronomy, as well as discussing the foundations of cosmology.

By its very nature, astronomy is a mathematical subject - students will therefore need a background in this area, although fully-supported maths master classes will be a permanent feature on the programme for those who need to refresh their skills in this area.

The programme starts in late September/early October each academic year, as well as a second start date in January each year – places are limited to ensure a constructive atmosphere for discussions.

This is a part-time, postgraduate-level programme delivered wholly online in a fully-supported learning environment. Students can exit with a Postgraduate Certificate after successful completion of the first year if their circumstances change.

Overview

Through this programme, students will:
-Gain a comprehensive knowledge of the development of astronomy, astronomy in the visible region of the electromagnetic spectrum, the solar system and stellar physics.
-Learn that physics is a quantitative subject and appreciate the use and power of mathematics for modelling the physical world and solving problems.
-Develop skills in research and planning and their ability to assess critically the link between theoretical results and experimental observation.
-Develop the ability to solve advanced problems in physics using appropriate mathematical tools.
-Be able to identify the relevant physical principles, to translate problems into mathematical statements and apply their knowledge to obtain order-of-magnitude or more precise solutions as appropriate.
-Develop the ability to plan and execute under supervision an experiment or investigation, analyse critically the results and draw valid conclusions.
-Be able to evaluate the level of uncertainty in their results, understand the significance of error analysis and be able to compare these results with expected outcomes, theoretical predictions or with published data.
-Possess a more complete working knowledge of a variety of experimental, mathematical and computational techniques applicable to current research within physics.

Structure

This part-time two-year programme will comprise six 20-credit modules:
Year One
-Introduction to Astronomy
-Stellar Physics
-The Solar System

Year Two
-Infrared and Radio Astronomy
-High Energy Astronomy
-The Foundations of Cosmology

Students will be required to complete all these modules in the first instance, though additional modules may be added in the future to accommodate future programme growth and offer a broader learning experience.

It is anticpated that assessments will comprise a balance of short and long critical essays, conference style posters and maths-based open book problems.

Online Study

Our approach to e-learning is distinctive and may be different from your general perceptions about online study:
-Flexible, fully supported, modular delivery
-Taught exclusively online
-Two stages: Certificate and Diploma. Each stage typically takes 12 months
-Comprises six distinct modules
-Part-time study (approximately 15 hours per week) allows participants to structure their learning around the other life circumstances

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