Siding Spring Observatory from the air

Master of Science in Astronomy & Astrophysics(Advanced option available)

Degree overview

Discover everything there is to know about extra-terrestrial planets, solar systems, galaxies, the universe and beyond at some the world’s most advanced space facilities.

With the advent of the Australian Space Agency, there has never been a better time to master astronomy and astrophysics. At Australia's national university, you can develop your skills and knowledge through hands-on activities at world-class facilities including telescopes at Siding Spring Observatory and Mount Stromlo’s Advanced Instrumentation and Technology Centre.

You will learn from world-leading academics at the ANU Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, like our Vice-Chancellor, Professor Brian Schmidt who won a Nobel prize for his research in astronomy and astrophysics. Your teachers also collaborate with industry to develop new space technology like nano-satellites and powerful lasers that can move space junk.

What you'll learn

Master of Science in Astronomy and Astrophysics

Coursework that you complete will cover a broad range of areas including astrophysical techniques and computing, planetary science, stellar astrophysics, galaxies and cosmology. Some of these courses will provide opportunities to contribute to research by analysing telescope data, developing theoretical models, or testing of new astronomical instrumentation.

You will also gain industry-ready skills such as project management, computer programming, science communication and problem solving through the completion of courses from a range of related disciplines.

Advanced program

The Master of Science (Advanced) in Astronomy & Astrophysics program provides you with the opportunity to extend your practical and coursework experience with the development and implementation of a research project supervised by an academic. This is particularly relevant to those who wish to benefit from the research strengths of ANU and pursue a career in research.

Student experience

Mount Stromlo Observatory

Work in a world-respected community of researchers who have made major contributions to astronomy. Map the structure and formation of the Milky Way, discover planets orbiting other stars, and study dark matter in nearby galaxies.

Meet Astronomy and Astrophysics student Karlie Noon

“I get to look at galaxies, learn about how stars are formed and look at amazing images of pretty space stuff. It's also incredibly challenging which is fun.”

Stars are born at ANU

Masters student Donghee shares his experiences of researching star formation.

 Virtual tour

Explore ANU science places, classrooms, laboratories and more through our interactive virtual tour.

Meet some of your teachers

Dr Christian Wolf

Dr Christian Wolf

Christian's research areas are in wide-field sky surveys, object classification and photometric redshift estimation, galaxy evolution through cosmic epochs and via environmental influence, supernovae and GRBs.

Associate Professor Christoph Federrath

Christoph's research focuses on understanding the formation of stars in the Universe by developing theoretical models and supercomputer simulations of molecular clouds, the birthplaces of stars. This involves the physics of turbulence, gravity, magnetic fields, radiation, stellar feedback and chemical evolution. 


Studying at the best university in Australia for astronomy and astrophysics (QS 2020), provides you with the opportunity to not only diversify your career options but also make international connections. Many of our graduates go on to do research in astronomy and astrophysics at some of the best institutions in Australia and overseas:

  • Harvard
  • Princeton
  • UC Berkeley
  • Cal-Tech
  • MIT
  • Cambridge
  • Oxford
  • Max Planck Institute for Astronomy
  • Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics
  • The Australian National University.

This program also prepares you for a career as a data scientist. These jobs are in high demand from tech companies like Google, Apple, and Netflix, to airlines or banking. You can also find positions with space and defence companies like Lockheed Martin, Northrup Grumman, Boeing, and national space agencies.

The Australian National University has been ranked as the top university for graduate employability in Australia in the Global University Employability Ranking 2020. As a student at ANU, you gain access to the ANU CareerHub – an online career development and employability tool that includes a jobs board and careers resources. You also have access to drop-in chats with a career consultant and to attend our career fairs to meet potential employers.


Fees & Scholarships

Tuition fees: Tuition fees

Visit the handbook to see indicative fees.

Featured scholarships: Featured scholarships

ANU offers many scholarships both to overcome disadvantage and to recognise academic merit.

By clicking this button, you submit your information to the webinar organizer, who will use it to communicate with you regarding this event and their other services

How to apply

Understand the entry requirements

  1. Check domestic admission dates on the ANU Study website.
  2. Check admission requirements and deadlines for this degree on the Handbook website. Read the requirements carefully to make sure you understand them.
  3. You must also meet the University's English language admission requirements.

Gather supporting documents

If you graduated from an Australian university, UAC will be able to access your results in most cases. However, you may be asked to provide transcripts or other documentation, so it is a good idea to prepare your records just in case.

You can still apply before you complete your bachelor degree if you are in your final year, and you must advise UAC in your application. You may need to provide a copy of your academic transcript directly to UAC as soon as you complete your degree. UAC will provide instructions during the application process.

Submit an application

Start your application on the Universities Admissions Centre website.

Receive an offer

All offers are made through UAC and are released on a rolling basis. You can access your offers and correspondence by logging into your UAC account.

Accept your offer

Once you receive an offer it is very important that you accept it to ensure your place at ANU is reserved.

Understand the entry requirements

  1. Check international admission dates on the ANU Study website.
  2. Check admission requirements and deadlines for this degree on the Handbook website. Read the requirements carefully to make sure you understand them.
  3. You must also meet the University's English language admission requirements.

Prepare entry requirements & support documents

When you apply to ANU, you must be prepared to provide specific documents that we need to assess your application.

Submit your application

Start your application on the ANU Admissions website.

Receive an offer

You can apply at any time throughout the year. Most applications submitted before the 15th day of each month will be considered for an offer on the 1st day of the following month.

You can change your degree preference between the 9th and 15th day of each month. You will have two months to accept your offer from ANU.

View the application dates on the ANU Admissions website.

Accept your offer

Accept the offer and enrol at ANU!


Need more information?

Send us an enquiry and we'll get back to you within 48 hours