Astrophysics

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Dec 27, 2023 12:46PM IST

About Astrophysics

Astrophysics is the study of physical theories about small to medium-sized objects and structures in the universe. Astronomy strategies the positions, luminosities, motions, and other properties of celestial objects. Cosmology is the study of the cosmos' largest structures as well as the universe as a whole.

Astrophysics, also referred to as Space science, uses physical science and chemical laws to explain the birth, life, and death of stars, planets, systems, nebulae, and other objects in the universe. Graduate, Postgraduate/Master, Certificate, and PhD programmes in astrophysics are available at some of India's best colleges and universities. Following their completion of the 12th, the candidate may continue with these Astrophysics courses. Online applications are accepted for the Astrophysics Certificate. Candidates can choose to study online astrophysics courses on learning platforms such as Coursera, edX, Alison, Udemy, and others.

The Astrophysics syllabus teaches students the knowledge about the various chemical and physical properties of different celestial bodies and are introduced to a wide range of Physics subjects, Math courses, Quantum Mechanics and university laboratory work. Students are taught in a combination of classroom teaching, practical sessions, tutorials, that introduce them to new discoveries and technologies and develop their problem-solving abilities. Candidates who are interested in pursuing a career in astrophysics must have advanced problem-solving abilities as well as the ability to think logically in complex situations. For a bright future in the field, candidates must also have a high level of mathematical ability, computer knowledge, and good communication skills.

Astrophysics course admissions are based on both merit and performance on entrance exams. BITSAT, IIT JEE, IUCAA NCRA, and other entrance exams are some of the popular and frequently taken astronomy courses. St. Xavier's College in Mumbai, St. Stephen's College in New Delhi, Loyola College in Chennai, and others are among the top universities that offer Astrophysics courses. Astrophysics course fees typically range between INR 20K and 1.5 LPA. The average salary after Astrophysics course ranges between INR 4 and 10 LPA.

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Astrophysics Course Highlights

Some of the major highlights of Astrophysics course are given below:

Name of the CourseAstrophysics
LevelCan be pursued at Certificate, Diploma, UG and PG level
Minimum EligibilityThe candidate must have passed class 12th in Science with 50%-60% minimum aggregate
Top Colleges
  • Osmania University
  • Punjabi University
  • Aligarh Muslim University
  • Indian Institute of Science
  • Mahatma Gandhi University
Admission Process

Merit-based: Some colleges take admission on the basis of merit obtained in the qualifying exam

Entrance based: Some colleges take admission on the basis of a national level, Institute level or a state level entrance exam

Course FeeINR 20K - 1.5 LPA (depends on institute)
Scholarship

Candidates belonging to reserved categories and economically weaker sections are eligible for state government scholarship schemes

Deemed or private universities offer merit scholarships  (based on marks in entrance exam or Class 12th)

InternshipThe scope for internships is less for students pursuing Astrophysics. However, he/ she can immediately get government jobs after graduation if they clear the recruitment exam. 
Average starting salaryINR 4 - 10 LPA
Career Options
  • Astrophysicists
  • Stellar Astronomers
  • Observational Astronomers
  • Solar Astronomers
  • Technicians
  • Research Assistants
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Why Choose an Astrophysics Course?

Astrophysicists are more interested in advanced mathematics and hypotheses than cosmologists, who are primarily concerned with the test side of science. With the application of factual research and polynomial algebra, one could achieve remarkable success in the field of astronomy. Therefore, a career in this area can lead to enormous recognition in Astrophysics and is both worthwhile and fulfilling.

Considering the small number of exploration astrophysicists, astronomy places a great deal of emphasis on both formal and informal science education. Aside from that, it gives everyone a fundamental sense of where we fit into an incredibly vast and stimulating universe. Candidates must choose Astrophysics for the following reasons:

  • Following degree completion, students may be able to find work as cosmologists, science teachers, space researchers, or instructors. The range of earnings for the students is INR 4 –10 LPA.
  • Upon finishing their undergraduate and graduate degrees, candidates may apply to PhD programmes, which allow them to deepen their understanding via research.
  • They are able to write proposal papers that can reveal their distinct field and aid in advancement.
  • Students from various streams can benefit from the declaration courses, which are available at any time and can help them advance their skills.
  • The competitors will also have the ability to become astrophysicists and work for top organisations such as ISRO, NASA, and SpaceEx.
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What is an Online Astrophysics Degree?

Students can study astrophysics online in addition to in traditional classroom settings. The majority of online astronomy courses are offered via different websites like Udemy, EdX, Coursera, etc. as certificate and diploma programmes.

The table below list all the Astrophysics Online Courses:

Coursera

CourseDurationAverage Fees (INR)
Effective Problem Solving5 HoursFree
Personal Leadership22 HoursFree
Archaeoastronomy6 MonthsINR 25,000
Geographic Information System Specialization7 MonthsINR 25,000

Note: The fees mentioned above are subject to change.

edX

CourseDurationAverage Fees
Astrophysics10 MonthsINR 13,287
Introduction to Astrophysics7 weeksFree
Astrophysics: Exploring Exoplanets9 weeksFree
Super Earths and Life15 WeeksINR 7445

Note: The fees mentioned above are subject to change.

Udemy

CourseDurationAverage Fees
Team Leadership3 HoursINR 500
Astronomy1 HourINR 2,880
The Einstein Revolution24 HoursFree

Note: The fees mentioned above are subject to change.

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Astrophysics Eligibility Criteria

Candidates must meet the following eligibility criteria in order to pursue the Astrophysics course:

  • The candidate must have passed class 12th or equivalent from a recognized board
  • The candidate must have studied Mathematics and Physics as the main subjects in class 12th
  • The candidate must have acquired a minimum aggregate of 50%-60% in the qualifying examination

Eligibility Criteria of BSc Astrophysics

  • Candidates must be qualified for the class 12 exam from a recognized board
  • Minimum 50%-60% score in aggregate need to be acquired for admission to the undergraduate level Astrophysics course
  • Mathematics and Physics should be studied as the compulsory subject in class 12

Eligibility Criteria of MSc Astrophysics

  • Candidates must be a graduate of the Science stream
  • Having 50% in aggregate marks of the previous qualifying examination is essential
  • In the entrance exam, candidates need to score high to secure their admission
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Astrophysics Skills Required

The potential of the candidates is assessed by the skills they possess. Candidates interested to pursue the Astrophysics course are expected to have the following skill sets:

  • Excellent skills in handling the mathematical concepts
  • Ability to use software for mathematical calculation
  • Expertise in problem-solving
  • Ability to perform critical analysis
  • In-depth research ability
  • Skills of data scanning and interpretation
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Astrophysics Specialisations

Astrophysics courses have some specialisation at various levels such as Undergraduate courses, Postgraduate courses, Doctorate courses, and so on, which are listed below for your convenience.

  • Electromagnetism
  • Thermodynamics
  • Waves
  • Newtonian Dynamics
  • Optics Modern Physics
  • Quantum Physics
  • Relativity
  • Fluid Mechanics
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Astrophysics Admission Process

The admission to Astrophysics course is done in two ways: 

Entrance-Based Astrophysics Admission Process

The entrance-based admission to the course is done on the basis of scores obtained by the candidate at a national level, state level or college level entrance exams. The admission is done through the counselling process. The following points must be considered for the entrance-based admission process:

  • The college/university releases the Astrophysics application form on its official website
  • Often the dates of the entrance exams are announced along with the application form
  • Candidates are asked to fill up the application form within the deadline
  • The candidates whose applications are successfully received are allowed to seat on the entrance test
  • After the declaration of the results, the college prepares a merit list, and candidates are selected based on their performance in the exam
  • Apart from the entrance exam scores, the other eligibility criteria are also taken under consideration

Merit-Based Astrophysics Admission Process

  • In this type of admission process, candidates’ marks in the previous qualifying examination are given utmost importance
  • A merit list is also prepared here where the names of the selected candidates are displayed
  • The colleges/institutes intake students according to the merit list and the admission rules
  • For Astrophysics, chances of getting direct admission is not possible, as the entrance exam is mandatory
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Astrophysics Syllabus

Astrophysics syllabus and subjects cover a variety of topics such as Oscillation and Waves, Properties of Matter, Special Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, and so on. The table below discusses all of the topics covered in Astrophysics Courses.

PhysicsProperties of MatterAstrophysics
MathematicsLaboratory WorkStars & Planets, Galaxies & Universe
Special RelativityOscillations and WavesPractical Laboratory
Quantum MechanicsThermal PhysicsCosmology
Electromagnetism Optics and Quantum Mechanics High Energy Astrophysics 
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Astrophysics Courses and Colleges

Astrophysics courses are available at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels. At both levels, there are a variety of course options. The objective of the undergraduate Astrophysics course is to discover the composition of the universe and to invent new technologies for a better understanding of the solar system. The postgraduate level, on the other hand, focuses on the study of the innate science of Astronomy.

Following are the course options available for the Astrophysics  Courses:

Astrophysics Courses Astrophysics Colleges
Undergraduate Astrophysics Courses
BSc in AstrophysicsOsmania University
Andhra University
BTech in Space TechnologyIIT Kanpur
IIT Madras
IIT Kharagpur
Postgraduate Astrophysics Courses
MTech in Astronomical InstructionIIA Bangalore
MTech in AstrophysicsIIA Bangalore
MSc in AstrophysicsOsmania University, Andhra University, NIT Rourkela
MSc in Astronomy and AstrophysicsIIST

Astrophysics Certificate Courses

Those who want to learn about modern physics frequently enrol in certification programmes. Some of the most popular online certifications of Astrophysics courses are listed below:

Name of CourseDuration
Astrophysics10 months
Introduction to Astrophysics7 weeks
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Astrophysics Career Options and Job Prospects

Some of the most popular job roles for recent graduates are listed below: 

  • Astrophysicists
  • Stellar Astronomers
  • Observational Astronomers
  • Solar Astronomers
  • Technicians
  • Research Assistants

Here is a list of the most sought-after jobs after completing an Astrophysics course:

Job Profiles Details 
AstrophysicistAn Astrophysicist’s aim is to develop theories and experiments on them to gain a better insight into the universe. He observes, analyses, and performs research on the celestial bodies for the same.
Steller AstronomersThe job responsibility of steller astronomers is to study the stellar phenomena like supernovas, blackholes etc. Besides that, they also study the life series of stars.
Observational AstronomersCreating research propositions, analyzing crucial information and developing logical papers in order to bring forth new discoveries are the key job role of an Observational Astronomer.
Solar AstronomersSolar astronomers study the system and characteristics of the Sun and its related aspects like a magnetic field, atmosphere etc.
TechniciansTechnicians perform mechanical as well as analytical experiments. They possess the expertise to work in a complicated situation.
Research AssistantA research assistant provides support to the project researcher by maintaining files and performing data management.

Astrophysics Salary

An Astrophysicist's starting salary ranges from INR 4 to INR 10 LPA, depending on the type of organisation and relevant work experience. The Naval Research Laboratory, National Aeronautics and Space Administration NASA, Space Telescope Science Institute, and others are among the international employers of astrophysics graduates.

ProfilesAverage Salary
AstrophysicistsINR 9 LPA
Science TeacherINR 5 LPA
LecturerINR 7 LPA
Observational astronomerINR 5 LPA
TechniciansINR 4 LPA
Space ScientistINR 6 LPA

Note: The figures mentioned above are subject to change.

Astrophysics Employment Area 

Many students continue their education by pursuing MSc, PhD, and astrophysics research projects. PhD holders can work on projects directed by seasoned physicists or launch their own initiatives. The following companies provide attractive employment opportunities for aspirants:

Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, PuneAstrophysics India Private Limited, PasayCatapult Learning Solutions Pvt. Ltd., Bengaluru
Nainital Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA)Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, PuneAryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES)
Bangalore Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO)TIFR, PuneNational Centre for Radio Astrophysics
Human Capital Solution, HyderabadGITAM University, MedakSONAI Science Academy, Assam
IISER, PuneInternational Institute of Information Technology, HyderabadBroward College, New Delhi
Space Physics LaboratoriesThe Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, VSSCSpace Applications Centres
Association of Bangalore Amateur Astronomers, ABBA--
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Scope of Astrophysics

The increasing number of spacecraft missions has resulted in significant advancements in the field of astrophysics. As a result, employment opportunities are expanding. A candidate with an Astrophysics degree is frequently appointed to a research team to supplement existing projects.

There are opportunities to work with large organisations in India, such as ISRO and the Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre. One can also join any non-profit organisation, such as the Association of Bangalore Amateur Astronomers.

Astrophysics job opportunities are not limited to India. There are also opportunities to work with organisations based in other countries. Organisations such as the Naval Research Laboratory, NASA, and the Space Telescope Science Institute provide excellent opportunities for talented professionals in this field.

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FAQs about Astrophysics

What is Astrophysics?

Astrophysics is the branch of astronomy that involves the study of physics and chemistry to understand the object of the universe like planets, stars and other celestial bodies.It is the combined study of physics,math, quantum mechanics and university laboratory work.

What are some of the Astrophysics courses offered in India?

A candidate can pursue M.Sc, B.Tech. + M.S, PhD or M.Sc. + Ph.D.in Astrophysics

Which colleges in India offer Astrophysics courses?

A candidate in India can pursue Astrophysics from IIT Indore, Indian Institute Of Space Science & Technology (IIST), BHU, AMU, MGU etc.

What is the admission procedure for Astrophysics?

Admission in Astrophysics degree programme is considered on the basis of national level or institute level entrance exam.

What is the fee of the Astrophysics course?

Fee depends on the level of programme and the institute. The average fee ranges between Rs. 30,000 to 50,000 per year.

What are the job roles of a candidate with a degree in Astrophysics?

Astrophysicists, Stellar Astronomers, Solar Astronomers, Observational Astronomers are some of the job roles of a candidate with a degree in Astrophysics.

What is the eligibility criteria to take admission in an Astrophysics course?

The candidate must have studied Physics and Mathematics in the qualifying exam(12th or graduation) for admission in Astrophysics course.

What is the scope of an Astrophysics course?

A candidate with a degree in Astrophysics can apply at ISRO, Space Physics Laboratories, The Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, Space Applications Centres, Association of Bangalore Amateur Astronomers. They can even get an opportunity to work at NASA, Naval Research Laboratory,Space Telescope Science Institute, etc.

What is the salary offered to Astrophysics graduates in India?

Depending upon the type of organization, the entry-level salary of an astrophysicist in India is Rs. 4 lakh to Rs. 10 lakh,

Is there any scholarship available for students enrolled in an Astrophysics course?

Reserved category candidates or candidates under EWS section are eligible for state government scholarship schemes. In private and deemed universities, merit based scholarship is scholarship.
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