The Master's programme Astronomy is a two-year full time study consisting of 120 ECTS credits.
The programme has the following structure:
- Courses, 60 ECTS credits
- Master's thesis, 60 ECTS credits
You can choose between three specializations: Solar physics, Cosmology or Extragalactic astronomy.
Course of study
Your course of study depends on your choice of specialization, and is usually planned in cooperation with your supervisor. Below you can see an example:
|4. semester||Master's thesis|
|3. semester||Master's thesis||Master's thesis|
|2. semester||Master's thesis||Elective course||Elective course|
|1. semester||AST4310 – Radiative Processes in Astrophysics||AST4320 – Cosmology and Extragalactic Astronomy||FYS4150 – Computational Physics|
|10 ECTS credits||10 ECTS credits||10 ECTS credits|
If you plan to study a semester abroad, we recommend that you do so in the second semester.
During the first semester you must find a supervisor amongst the scientific staff at the Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics. The work with your thesis will be carried out under close supervision. In cooperation with your supervisor, you set up a study plan with all courses you will be taking during the programme, including a project description for your thesis.
Prior to the start of the studies, you must provide a temporary study plan of courses that you will be taking in the first semester. During the programme, you must take at least 20 ECTS credits of master level courses in Astronomy. Other courses of a total of 40 credits can be chosen from master level courses in astronomy, physics, mathematics, mechanics, statistics and informatics. At least 20 of these 40 ECTS credits must be courses in other fields than Astronomy. Up to 20 ECTS credits of other courses can be approved by a Master's programme Board at the department.
Recommended elective courses: Cosmology and Extragalactic astronomy
- AST5220 – Cosmology II
- FYS4130 – Statistical Mechanics
- FYS4160 – The General Theory of Relativity
- FYS4170 – Relativistic Quantum Field Theory
- FYS4560 – Elementary particle physics (discontinued)
- STK4900 – Statistical Methods and Applications
For those who are to write a thesis in Theoretical Cosmology, the course FYS4170 – Relativistic Quantum Field Theory can replace AST4310 – Radiative Processes in Astrophysics if recommended by the supervisor.
Recommended elective courses: Solar physics
- AST5210 – Stellar Atmospheres I (discontinued)
- FYS4130 – Statistical Mechanics
- MAT-INF4300 – Partial differential equations and Sobolev spaces I (continued)
- INF5620 – Numerical methods for partial differential equations (continued)
- INF5670 – Numeriske metoder for Navier-Stokes likninger (discontinued)
- INF3380 – Parallell programming for scientific problems (continued) (Bachelor's level course that will require admission to single courses).
Within the three possible specializations, Solar physics, Cosmology and Extragalactic astronomy, the thesis may have two main forms, or a combination of these two:
- Observational Astronomy: You will use observational data either obtained from an astronomical observatory abroad (e.g. Nordic Optic Telescope or Swedish Solar Telescope, both on La Palma, the Canary Islands) or from other sources (e.g. space observatories). You will handle and analyse data using computer-based tools.
- Theory/modeling: You will use your knowledge in physics to solve astrophysical problems. In most cases, the work will be done by using computers.
The completion of the Master's programme is a 30 minutes public presentation of your thesis, followed by an oral examination. The final grade will be determined shortly after the examination.
Recognition of Master's courses from former education
If you are admitted to the Master's programme and you have completed Master's courses outside the University of Oslo, you may apply to have these courses recognised as part of your degree. Please contact the Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics for more information.
Diploma and degree
This programme leads to the following degree: Master of Science in Astronomy
The diploma is issued when you have completed the courses that meet the requirements for a degree. Read more about diplomas.