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Master of Science Specialisation Astrophysics (MSCN)

Study Mode
  • External

  • Semester 1 (February)
  • Semester 2 (July)

Number of Units
  • 16 units

  • 2 years or part-time equivalent

  • -

View USQ Handbook
Program Information Set

Join a world-class Astronomy research team

Let USQ’s Master of Science (Astrophysics) give you the professional knowledge and skills in the science of astronomy.

This degree combines coursework and research giving you the opportunity to further develop your skills with 4-units of research. Designed for those already in an educational or science communication career, you will undertake a professional development component in science, as well as gain a specialist foundation relevant for further research.

If you already have a bachelor degree or equivalent experience and are looking to expand your knowledge into the area of astronomy, the Master of Science (Astrophysics) is the degree for you.

You will have access to USQ’s remote-access facilities, including the Mt Kent Observatory, a facility for astronomical research and education operated by USQ, in partnership with the University of Louisville in Kentucky, USA, and Automated Patrol Telescopes Australia Pty Ltd.

Astronomy at USQ is a significant part of a physical sciences research cluster that has consistently rated as world class in Excellence in Research in Australia (ERA) assessments.

Students enrolled in the Master of Science (Astrophysics) can apply to exit their studies early with a Graduate Certificate of Science after completion of four units of study.

Astrophysicists/Astronomers are employed by universities and research organisations in Australia and overseas. Astrophysics is an international science, with major observatories and space agencies worldwide employing people from different nations, including Australia. Within Australia, most astrophysicists are employed as academics at universities or government agencies, and astronomy outreach work may be available at a science centre, museum or planetarium. Astrophysics also typically includes skills development for use in scientific and technical careers outside of astronomy.

Courses to be studied Units
14 x core courses 14
2 x elective courses1 2
Total 16

Refer to the USQ Handbook for courses to be studied and recommended enrolment patterns.

1 These electives are for students to take complementary studies in physics, mathematics, statistics or computing. Choice of the elective should be done in consultation with, and be approved by the Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences. 

How much will it cost?

Approximate annual costs1 for your first year of study (8 units) in this program are:

Study Mode Cost
Commonwealth supported AUD 9352
Domestic full fee paying AUD 23675

Loan to help you pay your fees

You may not have to pay your course (subject) fees upfront. HECS-HELP and FEE-HELP allows you to defer your fees until your income reaches a certain level.

You may also be eligible to receive financial support from Centrelink.

Scholarships and financial assistance

You may be able to apply for scholarships to help with your study costs.

1 These are indicative annual fees for 2018 and costs will vary depending on the actual courses selected during your study. Fees may also vary from year to year as they are reviewed annually.

Entry Requirements

  • 3-year bachelor degree or equivalent qualification from a recognised university

English Language Requirements

You are required to satisfy the applicable English language requirements. This program requires a minimum of IELTS 6.5 or equivalent.

If you do not meet the English language requirements you may apply to study a University-approved English language program.

How to apply

To apply for this degree:

Note: The Master of Science Astronomy major is only available via external study. It is not offered on-campus.



Closing dates

Applying directly to USQ:

  • Semester 1, 2018 - applications close Monday 19 February, with semester 1 commencing on Monday 26 February 2018.
  • Semester 2, 2018 - applications close Monday 2 July, with semester 2 commencing on Monday 16 July 2018. 

Credit for previous study or work experience

You may be eligible for credit if you have previously studied or have relevant work experience. This will help to reduce the number of courses that you need to study to finish your program.